GRIP: Combat Racing is one of those games more than welcome in a videogame generation where the number of arcade courses is dramatically decreased.
The title developed by Caged Element proposes to take up the dictates of Rollcage, one of the most iconic driving games of the generation 32 bit, and propose them in a modern way.
Was the operation successful? Let's find out together!
Everything revolves around me ...
The concept behind GRIP: Combat Racing takes up what we saw in Rollcage: the cars compete with each other in circuits where it will be possible run on walls, roofs and unconventional surfaces thanks to the possibility, for vehicles, to mount wheels which will allow to continue to compete even in the event of overturning.
The present modalities do not differ too much from canons like that, we will in fact have the classic mode available Career, the ability to play a single event via custom match, the Cartour and local and online multiplayer.
The Career is made up of a series of tournaments of increasing difficulty in which we will have to test ourselves with various types of events. In addition to the classic race where our aim will be arrive first we will be able to try our hand at a variant in which the position will not count but it will be necessary to reach a certain number of points to get the better of it.
Points can be earned damaging enemy vehicles, causing them to explode, or absorbing damage. For this purpose we will have available a good number of weapons ranging from homing missiles to the more classic submachine gun, there is also a shield to absorb enemy damage and an electronic noise to slow down the other cars on the track.
Such an arsenal will also be necessary for survival in the Arene, as you can imagine it is an all against all in limited maps in which to resort to every possible means to rack up more kills of the other players.
As we progress in the Career we will earn experience points useful to unlock a good number of customizations for our vehicle.
Complete the picture mode Cartour in which we will have a series of paths to complete before time runs out.
The aforementioned competitive modes can also be played in multiplayer, the best news is definitely the ability to play in splitscreen with three other humans; for many it may seem like a small thing but they are increasingly rare games that offer this possibility.
In the version PlayStation 4 tested the network code plays with wealth his job, in the test period I didn't find many opponents but I managed to play a few games anyway without encountering problems linked to lag or glitches of various kinds.
So if there is one area where the game stands out, it is certainly longevity, between single and multiplayer the user will always have available a good choice.
At the speed of light ... or not?
From a content point of view it is difficult to criticize at the work of Caged Elements, problems start to crop up once you hit the track.
The most obvious problem is the fluctuating quality of the tracks.
On the one hand we have routes designed for make the most of the peculiarities of the gameplay in which often and willingly land incorrectly or use the turbo carelessly punishes the player with the loss of valuable positions, are the circuits in which the sense of challenge and fulfillment they are perfectly represented.
On the other hand there are more extensive circuits with less presence of tunnels, curves and obstacles of various kinds where it is it is more difficult to "read" the situation is much less the continually feeling on the razor's edge, at times it almost feels like playing in two different titles.
Another problem I have noticed is the lack of feedback trying to do a turbo start or passing over the speed pads, in these cases the car's speed increase or acceleration they are almost imperceptible e they do not return at all the desired sensation of speed.
The physics of GRIP: Combat Racing is very accurate and in the right situations the gameplay is exactly what you would expect from a new generation Rollcage, it's a shame that certain naivety of game design go to affect the whole.
Letters from the future
As you can easily imagine the game's settings feature a distinctly futuristic cut without disdain natural views like deserts or snowy valleys, it is missing however personality.
The scenarios chosen are very generic and they do not remain impressed as they should, you will never have a landmark that immediately refers to a given setting or style.
L’Unreal Engine 4 manages properly what happens on the screen, the fluidity is fundamental in a racing title and the graphics engine does not show practically never drops.
Rather subdued the soundtrack, the choice of songs draws heavily from Drum’n Bass but almost all of the traces will fall into oblivion after the first few hours of play.
More can be given
Despite GRIP: Combat Racing you continually alternate excellent things with trademark errors the final result is discreet, it is tangible the passion of the developers in wanting to revive the sensations experienced with Rollcage ma the work as a whole lacks coherence and personality.
In today's arcade scene such a game definitely worth a look but, unless you are nostalgic for its direct inspiration, i 39,99 Euros questions certainly appear too many.