GRID Review: Arcade driving is back

Codemasters brings us a reboot of its most successful arcade driving saga. We get comfortable in our Akeron chair and adjust the Byakko V2 steering wheel holder to launch us on the asphalt at full speed. If you're a fan of arcade driving games, don't miss our GRID review.

Betting on a classic

Currently driving games that bet on a more arcade style are very limited, reduced to 3 or 4 really good options with Forza Horizon at the head. In 2014 we got the last installment of GRID by Codemasters who have now decided to give a new reboot to their saga combining in a very clever way arcade and driving simulation components.

This balance, although it tends more to the arcade, we can enjoy it both with the steering wheel and the gamepad, did someone say Newskill Arkadia? In addition, we will have at our disposal a lot of options and help that we can configure depending on our level to have more assistance or less in the races. From assistance in braking and cornering to the typical flashback function to go back a few seconds and retake well that curve that has made us lose positions.

With this the driving will be more realistic but without reaching the level of demand of the games more focused on simulation. GRID is committed to the arcade, in all its aspects, and this is noticeable in the sensations that the steering wheel transmits to us, with each race being very satisfying. This has been achieved thanks to the small differences between the cars that we can buy, when it comes to driving them.

We can buy cars, classic cars, muscle cars, single-seaters... that we can drive on a variety of circuits (more than eighty) that are framed in 12 locations combining real tracks with other invented ones that run through the most famous cities in the world. In addition, we will have the possibility of playing them all in the morning, afternoon or evening and with sunny or rainy weather. The weather and time zone that we select will be the one we will have during the whole race since there is no dynamic time.

Unlocking events

The main game mode, what we would call the "story mode" consists of overcoming a series of events, each time we overcome one of them new ones will be unlocked. In these events we can find several types of tests, such as time trials or variations in the number of tests that we must overcome to complete the event. Of course the type of vehicle we will need will also change, going through all the options available in the game.

What we felt was not very well exploited is the way of presenting these events, as it is simply a list of objectives to complete. Very similar to playing races individually. On the other hand where it stands out and is one of the things we want to highlight in our analysis of GRID is the behavior of rivals.

The situations we have seen and experienced in the races have caught our attention. The rivals behave in a very unpredictable way, they know at what moments to press, how to close the way when we try to overtake them and not only with us, among the same rivals also act in this way, taking advantage of the slipstream of another car and attacking each other. Of course, they can also make mistakes and go off the track or cause accidents.

One aspect of this artificial intelligence that we found very funny and interesting is the nemesis system, when we play more aggressively trying to get rivals off the track and crashing them, they activate the nemesis mode and go after us without mercy with the sole purpose of getting us out of the game.

A testimonial online mode

The online component is also an aspect that has been little deepened and is limited to games of up to 16 cars, being able to create private rooms or joining in quick games. There is nothing to motivate players to delve into this mode, no online leaderboards or anything like that. The upside is that it runs very smoothly, quite fluidly and with hardly any lag at all.

Attention to detail

Now it's the turn in our GRID review of the graphics and sound. At first glance it is not a game that will revolutionize the driving genre but the care with which the vehicles are recreated and the attention they have put reflecting the interior of each of them is to recognize.

As for the sound section is really sublime, you can appreciate the differences in sound of each of the models that we can drive, with their engines roaring and perceiving it differently depending on which camera we are using. We will not hear it the same if we use the interior camera than if we put the view from outside the vehicle.

To conclude

As a conclusion of our analysis of GRID is that it is a quite remarkable game, that what it offers does very well, there are details that can always be improved but once the traffic light turns green and we launched towards victory all those things are in the background.

Positive points

  • The sensations driving any of the cars are very good
  • Intelligence of rivals far superior to what we have seen in this type of games
  • It works at 60fps nailed
  • Many hours of fun

Points to improve

  • Catalog of vehicles somewhat scarce
  • Very basic online mode

We have been able to perform this analysis thanks to a copy provided by Koch Media for PS4

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