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Sega GT 2002 - Do these guys even know how to make a bad racing game? Tim 
Posted by: Tim at 12:10 AM EST on 1/17/2003
File Under: Games -> Xbox -> Quickview

Now that my super-cheap copy of the Sega GT 2002 + Jet Set Radio Future disc is here, my life outside of Sega GT 2002 has pretty much come to a halt. In the less than 36 hours since I received the game in the mail, I've already managed to log almost eight hours into it, and I am absolutely nowhere near slowing down! Hell, the best car in the game (Ford GT Concept) has just become available in the shop, and I have to save $150,000 to buy it. I've probably got another hour of gametime before I'll be able to buy that, then I'm going to have to trick it out with the best suspension, brakes, tires, turbine, intercooler, and, well... You get the idea. Then when I've got the car of my dreams, I'm still going to have to go through and complete the SS driving license test and a second season of races. Oh, and then there's the Quick Battle and Chronicle modes, too. Yeah, this game is pretty big...

Whereas Project Gotham Racing never really hooked me in with its ultra-short, overly technical courses and fairly difficult to acquire cars, Sega GT 2002 has totally made me its bitch with its lovely long, fast courses and over 100 vehicles. Hell, you can even buy Fiats! Why you would want to is beyond me, but hey, the option is there for you masochistic types. I guess that's a good thing.

On the graphical side, the game is a bit of a mixed bag. The car models are absolutely stunning and the frame rate has never dipped on me a single time, but on the other hand, the track surroundings are uninspired and those damn cardboard-cutout crowds look downright awful.

One thing in this game is consistantly beautiful, though: the handling. The original Sega GT on the Dreamcast suffered from the constant, horrible feeling that you were sliding around on ice. That has been totally fixed up in this version, and now every car handles like a dream come true - as long as you've tuned it correctly, that is. Afterall, a Viper with maxxed out horsepower is going to be hell-on-wheels if you don't have the right suspension and tires picked out.

Speaking of tuning, that's one area where this game falls short. All you can really do is select parts to put on your car and adjust a few things like the stiffness of your suspension, tire camber, and boost pressure. Where did the option to individually tune your gear-ratios from the original Sega GT go? I'm hardly a gearhead, so this doesn't bother me much, but I'm sure there are plenty of people out there who want to get into the nitty gritty with every little detail on their cars, but they just won't be able to.

Outside of customization, the only other major complaint I have about the game is a lack of tracks. There are really only a few that get recycled over and over again. I need more variety! Anyway, more on all this, along with a final recommendation, in my full review. I should get around to that in, oh, I don't know... Let's just say "eventually."

Initial Vibe: This game is flat-out fun. There may not be as many cars and tracks as Gran Turismo 3, but it has still managed to suck me right in. It has some flaws so far, but I'm still enjoying it.

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