Project Gotham Racing 4
Graphics 9
Sound 9
Gameplay 9

If you are looking for a fast paced racing game featuring some exotic cars (and bikes) then look no further than PGR4. The visuals are outstanding and there is enough content here to keep you playing for a long time. With a career mode as well as some arcade modes this is one racing game you won’t soon tire of.

Gameplay: Pure action packed racing done right.

Graphics: The rain is a visual standout, but the overall graphics are very good.

Sound: Very good sound effects and a soundtrack that should satisfy all tastes

Summary 9.0 Outstanding
Graphics 0
Sound 0
Gameplay 0
Summary rating from user's marks. You can set own marks for this article - just click on stars above and press "Accept".
Summary 0.0 Terrible

Project Gotham Racing 4

Developer: Bizarre Creations | Publisher: Microsoft Game Studios | Release Date: 2007 | Genre: Racing | Website: N/A | Purchase: Amazon

Project Gotham Racing 4 basically gives you a bunch of exotic (and not so exotic) vehicles and a series of racing tracks to try them out on.  There’s no story elements of fancy gimmicks, just pure arcade racing fun.  In single player Arcade mode you can work your way through a series of challenges, earning medals and kudos along the way.  The medals range from steel to platinum, but you’ll make progress no matter which medals you go for, which means players of all skill levels will have fun.  Kudos is earned by driving with style (or like a maniac) and performing moves like drifting, drafting and other stunts.  These points can then be spent in the shop to purchase new vehicle packs, tracks and other goodies.  Each challenge in Arcade mode throws something new at you to keep things fresh.  You might be performing street races, hot laps, eliminator events, break through challenges, overtaking goals and even a few  cone based events.

The career mode takes up the bulk of the single player game and has you participating in events on three different continents.  The events are spaced out on a racing calendar and once an event is over there’s no going back, so you’ll have to wait until the next calendar year to try again.  Along the way you’ll move up a rankings ladder with the ultimate goal being to reach number one on the leader board.  You’ll get a few new vehicles along the way by completing “invitationals” and the rest by buying them with kudos points, but even with the vehicles available straight away you stand a fair chance of winning.

The game really has a nice diverse mix of vehicles and for the first time motorbike fans will have their chance to shine in a PGR game.  Performing stunts, with the bikes for extra kudos is fun and on curves they are unbeatable, but can be easily be overtaken on straights and run the risk of getting knocked over by competitors with cars.  In total there are more than 130 different vehicles and while you can’t really customize them beyond a simple paint job this is still an impressive figure.  Even more so when you discover that each vehicle has an interior view as well.  While it’s not our favorite viewpoint to drive with, we can appreciate the effort.

The tracks are all recreated from real world locations and features cities like Tokyo, New York, London, Las Vegas and more.  The level of detail is really impressive and the neon lit, night time races are a definite stand out.

Another new feature to the series is the dynamic weather effects which ranks as some of the best we have seen in a racing game.  Driving through rain, snow and mist not only looks visually spectacular, but adds an extra layer of challenge to the tracks.  Water puddles and ice forms on the tracks and some careful breaking is required to get through them unscathed.  This is important as smacking into walls cost you time and momentum not to mention messes with you kudos combos.  To show off all this visual splendor you can access the “photo mode” at any time and take shots of the action.  Various effects can then be applied before saving the photo or uploading it to PGR Nations.

The audio took us by surprise as the first song that came through our speakers sounded like it came from a Bollywood film.  We soon discovered the other “stations” all of which have been separated into genres like metal, rock, dance and pop.  There isn’t a lot of songs in each category, but there should be something to satisfy everyone’s taste.  The sound effects are great and all the cars have their own unique engine noises.  There’s no annoying announcers to put a damper on things either.

PGR 4 packs a nice set of achievements to aim for, some of which actually show some originality.  The ‘puzzle’ achievements in particular are head scratchers provided you don’t resort to guides.  The majority of achievements can be gained offline which is always a nice touch.  DLC wise you are looking at a free challenge pack, which adds some new vehicles and achievements plus a premium challenge pack.  The Premium Pack is going for dirt cheap at this stage and has enough content to make it worthwhile.  Geometry Wars fans will be pleased to know that a new arcade machine with “Geometry Wars: Waves” can be found in your garage to try out.  It doesn’t give you anything for playing, but it’s pure fun and a nice extra.

Project Goham Racing 4 is the last title that Bizarre Creations delivered under the Microsoft label and as far as swan songs go it’s quite spectacular.  We thought that we would get bored with the game, but was hooked for over 40 hours on the single player modes alone.  If you are looking for a game that isn’t as realistic as Forza, but not as arcade like as Burnout then PGR 4 is a good choice.  We would have liked to see some vehicle damage beyond a busted window or two, but there’s not much else we can find fault with.  Even with all the other racing titles on the market PGR 4 is a standout title.

*Review originally published in 2008.

Related posts

Castlevania: Legacy Of Darkness

Castlevania: Legacy Of Darkness

While the game is entertaining and offers value for money, I'm still not sold on the third dimension. It just adds annoying problems and the drab color palette doesn't help either. Still, there is plenty of content with four playable characters, although the game feels more like an upgrade than a sequel to the original Castlevania 64. Gameplay: Lots of platform jumping & some minor puzzle solving. Graphics: Not too bad but definately needed more color. Sound: Again not too bad but certainly not the best in the series.

Pokémon Sword

Pokémon Sword

While Pokemon Sword doesn't quite live up to the expectations of Pokemon fans, it is still a very enjoyable title. It does lack half of the Pokemon in the National Pokedex but features plenty of new ones as well as some interesting features, such as Dynamaxing. The story is a little weak, but the Pokemon battles are as enjoyable as always and the gym battles are some of the best in the series. As long as you don't mind the fact that not all the Pokemon are present in this outing and that the game is maybe a little too easy you will have fun with this title. Gameplay: It is still a lot of fun as a Pokemon title, but doesn't quite live up to its high expectations. Graphics: The game looks great but not as great as some of the other Nintendo Switch titles. Sound: The lack of voice acting is disappointing, but the music and sound effects are good.

Uncharted: Drake’s Fortune

Uncharted: Drake's Fortune

Uncharted may not have the most original plot, but the lead characters are likeable and the locations exotic. While you will spend more time exercising your trigger finger than exploring, the game has plenty of action and a ton of a extras. While it could have been a bit longer the treasure hunting will keep you coming back for more. Gameplay: Great but maybe too much emphasis on gunfights. Graphics: Detailed and vibrant. Sound: Good voice acting and atmospheric music.

Leave a comment

twenty + nineteen =