Flatout Video Game Review for the XBox, Playstation 2 (PS2) and the PC

FlatOut is a playful race car game with little realism. Like most race car games the vehicles get banged up on the way to the finish line, but this game does not alter the handling of the vehicles based on how badly damaged they become. Your car can be smoking or on fire, but it will never quit on you or explode like you might expect. It handles the same from the time you start the track until the time you complete the track. The only thing that alters the way the cars handle is the upgrades that are purchased.

You will start the game by creating a profile for your driver. There is a choice of regular or professional for the experience level and a choice of male or female for the driver's gender. Once a profile has been rendered you can purchase the vehicle that you want to use (you will start off with enough money to buy any of the cars available). Then you can upgrade the car if you are left with enough money or race the car to gain more money. Money is given for every position that you place in; except for 8th place. You also receive money for crashes as a bonus (even for 8th place).

When you play in your particular profile you can unlock other racing tracks or bonus games by placing 3rd or better. The asphalt tracks are fairly easy in the bronze races, but some cars are particularly hard to handle on the dirt tracks. It is a good idea to buy two cars; one for speed and one for traction. Upgrades come in handy for bringing your car up to snuff for the dirt and snow tracks.

The bronze racing tracks are primarily dirt so one would think that you would become particularly adept at racing off-road, but racing in the silver or gold races is a lot more advanced and even the asphalt races usually take a few tries before you come in 3rd or better. The races are not simple even though the cars never become any harder to drive based on the damage they take. However, learning the layout of each track is very simple since all tracks seem to be markedly similar. Many of the same objects / obstacles are overused from one track to the next, a few times I exited out of the track because it looked like I was playing on a track that I had already beaten, but I wasn't.

The graphics are solid and realistic with plenty of object to crash into. When you crash into an object your nitrous increases. By using your nitrous you can gain the ground you lost from your crash and maybe even get farther ahead. It is best to use the nitrous on the strait-of-ways though or you will inevitably crash your vehicle once again. Don't forget to save some of that nitrous for the finish line.

The bonus games are a great comic relief. Some of them involve ejecting your driver as far and as high as you can in order to gain high score. You can also win money prizes from these bonus games to help upgrade your race car. There is a demolition game where you must destroy all of the other vehicles before your car takes too much damage and there is even bowling and darts.

FlatOut may not be very complex, but it does offer some variety. I guess you could say you get more bang for your buck. How long it holds your attention is basically up to the individual; as for me I held in there for three days. Someone else may play it for years and never get bored. Whatever the personality though, if you rent this game it won't be a waste of money.

Article Source Link by Miranda Stites

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