Thursday, January 27, 2011

Ridge Racer: Hot Pursuit

I'm convinced that the true current-gen Ridge Racer game has the Need for Speed branding.

Yes, I know that there are Ridge Racer games for the Xbox 360 and PS3, and I've played them, but bear with me here.

I think that Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit is the true successor to the Ridge Racer franchise, in more ways than one.

Think about it. What are the two big constants in the Ridge Racer franchise? Nice-looking places and long drifts through those places. Let's take a look at Ridge Racer 7 for the PS3 in action.

Take a look at the graphical design for a moment. Doesn't that look like a place to go cruising through? "Honey, I'm not lost, even though I've been here for an hour, I'll figure it out.", you'll say in a half-hearted attempt to cover the fact that you're just crusin'. It's been a constant of Ridge Racer, as much as the drifting: exotic venues.

Now, NFS. Let's take a look.

The venues around Seacrest County are designed around a similar philosophy of being cool places to drive around in real life. I swear, there are some Ridge Racer-esque details, like the seaside venues, the airplanes in the sky, sweeping roads, and other eye-pleasing things. Perhaps the guys at Criterion like Ridge Racer?

And the big drifts are about the same. The cars actually feel weighted in NFS, while the Ridge Racer mechanics feel like racing on ice, but the achievement in the Super Sports DLC pack where you have to pull off a 1,000 foot drift in a Porsche 911 GT2 (yes, I did it) indicates that Ridge Racer-esque drifts are totally possible.

So, when you think about it, Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit is the real evolution of the Ridge Racer formula. Thoughts?

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