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This week in racing game news:
We played "GRID Legends" and it's really fun
This week saw the release of two high-profile racing games: "Gran Turismo 7" and "GRID Legends." Since "GRID" released a bit earlier, we're giving our thoughts on that one this week, but you can look forward to our "Gran Turismo 7" impressions during next week's roundup. As far as "GRID" goes, it's a great looking and feeling arcade racer with a fair amount of variety and a remarkably well-acted story mode that's easy to get sucked into.
The main gameplay modes available are story, career, social (multiplayer) and race creator. We've spent the most time in the 36 chapter story mode, and we've very much enjoyed our time with it. The live-action cutscenes are surprisingly well produced. The story is kept entertaining largely thanks to a fantastic performance by Miles Yekinni as Marcus Ado, a "prodigy" Team Principal for the in-game Seneca Racing team. Expectedly, Marcus quickly turns his attention to you, the player, whose job it is to dominate in the first few races and impress him so he'll ask you to join the team. The layout for this mode isn't anything unexpected; it follows a pretty traditional cutscene, race, cutscene, race, etc. kind of format, but the pace is thankfully well-balanced and pretty engaging.
As for the actual gameplay, it's about as arcadey as it gets, in a good way. The game starts you off with all kinds of assists automatically turned on and the default difficulty mode is pretty laughably easy if you have any experience with racing games at all. This isn't a criticism, though, as you can easily crank the difficulty level higher if you want. In fact, this would likely be a fantastic game for someone who isn't super comfortable with racing games, but wants to dip their toe into the genre. It looks great, it has plenty of vehicle types and tracks to choose from, and it's not bogged down by an endless cascade of unnecessarily confusing menus (*cough* looking at you, "Forza" *cough*).
Speaking of vehicle types, there are a lot of them. You can choose to race Touring, Tuner, GT, Drift, Track Day, Open Wheel Racing, Trucks, Electric or Special vehicles. All of the vehicle types have pretty distinct feels and are fun in their own ways. There are also 22 track locations, each with multiple drivable routes and the ability to race during the day or at night, creating a huge amount of track options for players.
All-in-all, if you're not looking for a super intense, teeth-grinding challenge or a hyper-realistic simulation, but, rather, you just want to have some fun ripping around tracks, this game is very likely worth your time. We'll be streaming it on our weekly gaming livestream next week Tuesday at 2pm ET if you want to check it out and ask us questions about the game live, or you can pick up the game for yourself right here.