6.0

Star Wars Racer Revenge review
Star Wars Racer Revenge

The good:

It's a tighter, faster more polished version of the N64 and Dreamcast version. Easily the best sci-fi racer I've ever played!!

The bad:

I was up all night playing the game.

Summary:

Often seen as an overzealous Star Wars fan I shocked a few people by not being very interested in this one. I loved the podrace in Ep.1 and I thought the N64 game was ok but nowhere close to perfect...guess I had a been there, done that, give me "Attack of the clones" attitude. Lucky for me yesterday was Valentines day and I have a swell fella who knows that the way to my heart is Star Wars and my PS2.
So, I fired the game up and by the end of the first lap I realized that this game was not some rehash or afterthought. This game is faster, tighter, crisper and much more polished than the first Racer. The graphics are smooth and lush. (I have yet to experience any slowdown even with all the racers on screen at once.) The courses are simple enough at the beginning, allowing the player to become comfortable with the controls while still having a chance of taking first place. The courses are also intricate enough that it's possible to best your winning time by searching out the numerous shortcuts. Races gradually increase in difficulty and intensity forcing you to hone your racing skills and upgrade your vehicle in Watto's shop. (a task much more streamlined this time).
Impressive as the graphics and layout is, what won me over was the ruthless competition from the other racers. A major part of the game play involves eliminating competitors by ramming them into walls or other racers. Unlike the past podracer games in "Racer Revenge" when someone's pod blows up, it stays blown up and the total # of racers drops...thusly adding a bloodlust to the race that was seen in the movie but absent in the first podracer game. It's this feature that injects the races with a jolt of energy and unpredictability that I have never experienced in a racing game.
I played until the sun came up and the only problem I can find with the game is that the commentators banter gets kinda old after a while. A small price to pay for a game with sharp visuals, great level design, intuitive controls, killer sound effects and a true sense of speed. All in all a standout racer for fans of the genre and a must have for any Star Wars gamer.

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