If you ever played Sega Rally for the Sega Saturn you will know a little of what to expect from Sega Rally Revo for the Playstation 3. The game gives new life to Sega’s fast paced arcade racing tradition by updating features while still paying respect to the forefathers of the franchise. The graphics are now in pretty high definition and the physics engine is tweaked for today’s powerful consoles. Sega Rally Revo is fast and a lot of fun, but the limited number of tracks and short single player mode could disappoint the value minded gamer.
It is worth noting that Sega Rally Revo hit store shelves at a compromising time. The Playstation 3 already has two AAA off road racing games on the platform and a third seems to crowd the market a bit. Since Sega Rally Revo is the latest of these titles, it may be hard for it to garner the same amount of press and critical acclaim as the games before it. In a way, Sega Rally Revo shouldn’t have to compete with the other off road racing titles on the Playstation 3. It is the only classic arcade racer of the bunch and the game has a quirky sense of style and personality all its own. Fans of arcade racers will appreciate the classic game play and fresh new presentation of Sega Rally Revo.
In terms of options, at the title screen you have your standard Championship mode, time attack, quick race, and multiplayer selections. Championship mode is the standard single player affair and has players racing around the world to unlock different cars and courses. The Championship mode has five race locations with a few different tracks in each location. It won’t take too long to get through all the races, but the increasing difficulty means that if you want to win every single race, you will spend a lot of time restarting and replaying.
The game play in Sega Rally Revo is very fast and a little hard to pick up at first. Even though this is an arcade racer, there is a slight learning curve to master the keys to victory. The steering is extremely tight and responsive, but the cars lack any feeling of weight. Sliding around corners is more about the perfect line and less about your speed and breaking technique. Most of the races in the Championship mode are challenging and since cars cannot be tuned in Sega Rally Revo, you must race smart if you want to win.
One feature of the game that has been hyped from day one is GeoDeformation. As you slip and slide around the different courses you will notice that the track actually changes appearance from lap to lap. Cars dig out tire tracks in the mud and even displace water as they crash through puddles. The GeoDeformation is a cool feature and is technologically impressive, but it didn’t affect the overall game play too much. I can also chalk that up to the fact that the Playstation 3 controller doesn’t have rumble, so it was hard to feel the car being kicked around a lot. Another slight issue with the GeoDeformation is that sometimes you can see the terrain changing just before you reach a given section of track. It can give a slight pop up effect that was a little annoying at times. This was not a huge problem, but it was noticeable during some races.
The graphics in Sega Rally Revo are overall very good. The cars look amazing and for the most part the tracks look great too. Some of the vegetation and surroundings didn’t look too impressive, but you won’t have much time to look around at shrubbery anyway. Cars collect mud and dirt as they spin around the tracks and these effects look great. The mud in particular has a shiny wet look that is very cool. It may not be 100% realistic, but it is some nice eye candy. The lighting and rich colors are a welcome change from the usual dark, gritty graphics of most now-gen titles.
The multiplayer modes in Sega Rally Revo offer some of this title’s most entertaining moments. Racing against five other people online is a great time even though things get dirty right out of the gates. Every race I entered had players crashing into each other from the very start. Luck seemed to be the key to victory, but I never found myself overly frustrated. Sega Rally Revo also has an offline split screen mode for those without a high-speed connection. The split screen mode works just as well as its online counterpart and is a great deal of fun.
Sega Rally Revo seems to know exactly what type of game it is. The game emphasizes the arcade racing feel, but it does comes at a small price. The cars do not show any sort of damage and invisible walls line the racetracks. Without the invisible walls the games difficulty would sky rocket, but you would also have some pretty spectacular crashes. If you want semi-realistic car damage and fantastic wrecks then you will have to look elsewhere.
All in all Sega Rally Revo is a good arcade racer. The learning curve was a little steep and the single player mode was not as robust as I would have liked, but the fast arcade action kept me coming back for more. The game really shines in the multiplayer modes and is pretty easy on the eyes too. I suggest this game to any hardcore arcade racing junkie and fans of the old school Sega racing games. Other gamers might just want to rent this one and splash around in the mud for the weekend.
More On:Sega Rally Revo
A solid arcade racer with a bit of a learning curve
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