The majority of these releases really won't be seeing the light of
day until the spring season, so maybe in a way, I'm using the term "upcoming"
a bit loosely. Actually, this section is made up of the racing games that seem
to have a rather solid and firm release schedule. In other words, the developer
gave a date of release. Now, as you may know, games DO get delayed (the sad truth
of GT4 thus far), so these release dates should not be taken as the gospel. So, without
any further delay, let's get into the games!
Publisher : THQ
Platform : Xbox
Racing Type : Motorcycle / Speedbike
Release Date : June
It's a bit suprising to see that THQ is actually bringing the MotoGP
franchise back to the Xbox for a third time, seeing how the second was not much
of a success at all. But that doesn't mean Climax (the developer) will be skimping
on the details. The third installment will refine the engine of the second MGP release,
as well as deliver new courses and a new mode of gameplay. It's nice to actually see
a different type of racer make it's way on to the Xbox (or any system) this year,
kind of giving us a break from just cars.
Publisher : THQ
Platform : Xbox, PS2
Racing Type : Street / Arcade
Release Date : May
Just like another street racing game before it (Street Racing Syndicate),
Juiced is back from the ashes of a bankrupt company (Acclaim) and in the hands of
another publisher. Juiced was supposed to be Acclaim's response to losing the Burnout
franchise to EA last year, and was even slated to be released within a week of Burnout 3's
release, but right at the end of August, Acclaim finally went down in flames, along with
every game it had on it's fall release schedule, including Jucied. But in late 2004,
THQ won a bid to publish Juiced, but decided to push it's release back to "sometime
in 2005". Well, it seems like that sometime is this May.
Hopefully, the developers at Juiced Games took the time to fix what was wrong with
the "Acclaim Build" of Jucied that was to be released in 2004. I played the Xbox
demo back before it's release, and I walked away unimpressed. The environments
were decent, as the car models, but the sense of speed was painfully slow (and this
is coming from a person who thought Racing Evolution's sense of speed was decent, while
other critics said it was slow), the handling was not very tight, and the game
really felt like an un-fun version of Project Gotham Racing (although this was
supposed to be like NFSU). Juiced Games was given about 6-8 months extra development
time, and hopefully it will be time well spent.