WRC 3 REVIEW
Will WRC3 finally break into the big-time with this latest attempt to crack the simulation genre?
Posted by PlayDevil.com Staff on Oct 25, 2012 14:03 (Oct 25, 2012 14:03)
Written by: Ian
Will "WRC 3" finally break into the big-time with this latest attempt to crack the simulation genre? After a great playing but awful looking debut, and a mediocre update last year, will this be the start of a new life or slow death for the rally franchise?
WRC 3 has one of the better story modes of any racing game in recent memory in the ‘Road to WRC’ mode, which gives you a number of challenges against a set of rivals. You move across different countries and disciplines, and winning will eventually see you rewarded with a WRC contract and a shot at the big time.
The mode is pretty good, but the slightly cheesy comic-book style art, and a dumbing down of some technical parts of the game do remove some of the sense of realism. There’s also no tutorial (rally school) this year, and not having to collect sponsors or team- members in the same way means that for every step forwards, there is a step backwards or sideways as well.
The gameplay has always been the star of the WRC games, and this year is no exception. There’s even more cars than ever before, with a roster than goes right back to the dawn of competitive rallying in the late 60’s and early 70’s. Having said that, there is a slightly more arcade feel to some of the handling characteristics than was present in the very much hardcore games of the last two years, so there’s less of a defined difference between the cars, and the surfaces which you drive on.
Whilst the game still presents a frightening challenge (especially on higher difficulty levels or with all the driver aids off), some of the tension and excitement is gone as a result of these subtle handling changes.
The game still represents terrific value though, with the Road to WRC mode being a 10 or so hour tutorial of sorts in lower-powered machinery, before you even reach the WRC. Thankfully WRC single stages, rallies and championships are all available from the off to compete in, and all of the drivers and cars from the 2012 season are there too. There’s all of the official rallies as well, which all have 6 different stages to compete in, from the tight super special stages to wide open gravel tracks and dusty desert courses. There’s plenty of variety and it could easily take upwards of 30 hours to see everything the game has to offer in single player, and the game has a number of achievements that try to get you to spend time across the different modes.
Annoyingly though, in WRC mode, I found the game very prone to crashing (about every 3rd stage), which made it almost possible to progress. Hopefully such awful instability can be patched out in the near future.