Anyone who has already fallen in love with Project CARS should definitely order the sequel directly. With Project CARS 2, the Slightly Mad Studios development team has taken an extremely good racing simulator to a new level. So good that after a successful sim career you are as good as ready to start real motorsport on real racetracks. A first test report.
Physics close to reality
All fans of Need for Speed or similar arcade games must first hit the driving school bench again. Full throttle into a curve and then hoping to get out without any problems, that doesn’t work in Project CARS 2. This simulation turns the couch potato into a real racing professional. Physics is the supreme law and therefore “slow in, fast out” applies in this game. Which simply sounds better in English “slow in, fast out”.
It can be seen that a steering wheel should be purchased with the purchase of the game. The developers have done a lot of tweaking on the gamepad control and sensitivity, but it still doesn’t come close to a real steering wheel. Complex stretches in particular with unintelligible bends over knolls are easier to master with the steering wheel and accelerator than with the gamepad.
Project CARS 2 seamlessly builds on its predecessor
The starting position for the first part of the simulation wasn’t bad. If not one of the best motorsport games in years. However, the developers have made small adjustments. The graphics were made even more real, which is always nice to see on old Formula 1 vehicles, for example, how the suspension works on the track. Or the reality screw, which has been turned up even further. Completely sealed off from the outside world, the borders disappear. Not least because of the improved sound of the vehicles or the atmosphere, you can immerse yourself deeply in motorsport.
Especially if you have a powerful computer at your disposal, you can get support from Oculus Rift or HTC Vive devices. By diving into VR, you can quickly forget that you don’t actually have an official racing license. In addition to the tangible, the mobile has also been expanded. Instead of the manageable number of vehicles, there are now 189 vehicles to choose from on 63 routes (previously 30) with a total of 146 layouts. So that could take until you have played through every experience and you get bored. As in the first offshoot, all racing cars, with the exception of a handful in career mode, are available from the start. This time, however, a few rallycross and icy tracks are new to the line-up.
Revised online area for more balance
Another new feature is a kind of “reputation” in the online area. The driving style for online opponents becomes clearer through reviews. Anyone who travels without considering losses is given a low rating and is categorically excluded from special events. However, you are no longer lumped together, but packed into a race with drivers of the same driving ability.
Even with Gran Turismo Sport on the horizon, Project CARS 2 remains – once again – the undisputed candidate in the simulation sky. It is another milestone that can most likely only be replaced by Project CARS 3.
Photos: Bandai Namco Entertainment