WRC Powerslide is a World Rally Championship game developed and published by Italian studio Milestone available now on Xbox Live arcade and Playstation Network. (www.Milestone.it )
Unlike other racing titles developed by Milestone, WRC Powerslide focuses game-play on immersing four cars into one of eight WRC official national rally tracks, each with at least three unique stages, in a top rear chase camera. It’s dynamic angle camera system also allows for a changing environment to play a role in the game. This time, WRC drivers face power-ups. Six different on track tiles grant players the ability to take down other cars, cause fog to obscure the track, and to slow the leader or the first car in front of you when you unleash it.
So it’s a straight forward arcade racer in many ways, however not at all a straight forward experience. Game options are simple enough. You can choose between three difficulty settings (easy, medium, and hard.) You can even decide to play a more simplified, traditional WRC game by turning collisions and power-ups off.
(You can choose to turn on auto leader board posting as well.)
The ability to turn on/off the arcade version of the game is the most interesting decision Milestone made. Turning it off means racing a very direct, time trial oriented WRC game. You still have a lot of rally stage to deal with, so it’s not going to be easy as pie out there. While the other competitors become ghosts, allowing you to drive right through them, the eight unique locations are as diverse and dangerous as the nations they emulate.
Turning collisions and power-ups on transforms WRC Powerslide into a four player death race in the wild. Using the special power-ups like thunderbolt, which strikes only the leader of the race at that time, you are still trying to post the fastest time but it is set against fighting other cars for physical space on the track and dealing with hazards posed from power-ups.
Here’s a quick run-down.
There are 12 achievements (or trophies) to pursue. Cost of 1200 MS points.
1) Rally of Monte Carlo
2) Rally of Germany (ADAC Rallye Deutchland)
3) Vodafone Rally of Portugal
4) Rally of Sardegna
5) Rally of France Alsace (Credit Mutuel)
6) Rally of Guanajuato Mexico
7) Rally of the Gods (Greece at the Acropolis)
8) Wales Rally of Great Britain in Cardiff
(Total of 24 unique rally stages total.)
The game is broken into three car classes, the WRC top teir, Class 2 and 3.
Examples of Car manufacturer models.
1) Ford Fiesta (Class 2)
2) Skoda Fabia
3) Fiat Abarth Grande Punto
4) Proton Satria Neo
5) Subaru Impreza WRX Sti (Class 3)
6) Mitsubishi Lancer EVO X
7) Ford Fiesta ST
8) For Fiesta RS WRC (WRC)
9) Mini John Cooper Works WRC
10) Citroen DS3 WRC
Plus 2 more hidden unlocks-
THE SIX POWER-UPS
1) Extreme Pace- Triple power effects
2) Nitrous Oxide- Speed boost
3) Horn Power- Hits the first car in front of you
4) Hailstorm- Affecting all three opponents
5) Thunderbolt- Takes out the leader temporarily
6) Cloud of dust- Hides the track in a cloud of fog or dust
So the final verdict is that WRC Powerslide is a lot of fun. As far as it’s competition on the market for downloads, it’s far better than most games like it. The only real flaw is there is not always a car to track response graphically. Snow, water, or dust should be flying off the tires from the environment and it isn’t always the case that when there is an obstacle or even mud puddle, that the effect of tire spray follows. Other than that the graphics are very good. More than what you commonly see in downloads for arcade etc. It’s more bang for your buck than you tend to get in download games these days.
Milestone is no rookie at creating great racing games.
Take a look at WRC Powerslide, it may just become one of your favorites.
Other titles from Milestone.
1) WRC Championship Rally
2) SBK Generations, SBK 2011, SBK X
3) MUD FIM Motocross World Championships
4) WRC Championship Rally 2+1
5) Superstars V8 Next Challenge, Original V 8
6) Moto GP 08, 07
7) Evolution GT
8) With EA- Superbike 2001, 2000, Superbike World Championship