Monday, February 23, 2009

NASCAR Kart Racing

Developer: EA Sports Freestyle
Publisher: EA
Release Date: Feb. 10, 2009
System: Wii
ESRB Rating: E

In a nutshell: No, it doesn't make any more sense after you play it.
0:00 The fact that a game as unlikely and self-contradictory as NASCAR Kart Racing even exists is reason enough to give it an hour-long test drive, as far as I'm concerned.

0:01 A bit of loading, then no fuss, no muss; we're already at the title screen. There are two helmeted racers sticking out of what look like roofless, miniature versions of NASCAR cars. Their heads stick out above the top of the windshield. The most generic rock music I've ever heard plays in the background. Oh man, this is going to be exquisitely painful.

0:02 "Welcome! I'm your guide, Flagman Fred," says a crazed-looking man who speaks in an odd pidgin. "There are three things you need to know before getting started!" Is one of them "abandon all hope?" Apparently not. They are: 1) Stick close to your teammates to earn boost; 2) Run in to "Pit Lollipops" (no, I don't know what that means) for random power-ups; and 3) Powerslide. "You're all set! Start your engine and have fun!" I'll do at least one of those!

0:04 Twelve manga-fied versions NASCAR drivers are selectable, with 12 more to unlock. Each has different rankings in Slide, Zone, Grind (what is this, Tony Hawk?) and Boost. I go with Kyle Busch because half of his name is totally awesome. I also get to pick a teammate, whose stats will be added to mine. Dale Ernhardt, Jr. is Kyle's perfect complement. Hooray for balance!

0:06 Four courses out of 12 are selectable in the Quick Race: Talladega, Cactus Pass, Beltway Battle and Junkyard. Boy, after Talladega they really started ignoring that NASCAR license quickly, huh?

Read the full review at Crispy Gamer

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