GRID: Autosport Preview


It seems that certain sections of the racing game audience didn’t particularly like GRID 2 all that much. Codemasters is going out of their way to redeem the franchise with GRID: Autosport. I recently got my hands on a PC build of the upcoming racer to give you all my impressions in the run up to its release next month.

The first thing that hits you is the sheer wealth of content that’s on offer with Autosport. This looks like it’s going to be a huge time sink for those who want to get their teeth into a racing game without the grinding nature of Gran Turismo or Forza. From the get-go, Autosport seems to be setting out the stall with a banner saying “This is about racing, go have fun”, and with five different career paths to take in the main mode, it’s definitely going the right way about it.

The five options available are Touring, Endurance, Open Wheel, Tuner and Street. Several of these are self explanatory, but it’s the “Tuner” category that looks to mix things up a bit. This is where you can get to drift round tracks and generally act like the fool under the guise of doing actual motor racing. The closest thing I could compare it to would probably be DIRT’s Gymkhana mode. Endurance mode sees you living your inner Le Mans fantasies, Street mode has you battling it out with souped up hot hatches in the middle of several cities, Open Wheel puts you in the cockpit of a Formula 3 car, and Touring reminds you that it was Codemasters who once gave us the brilliant TOCA series back on the PS1 and 2.

Gameplay is a definite area of improvement from GRID 2, with an obvious lurch toward the more simulation side of things, whilst keeping a foot in the arcade camp. The beauty of Autosport from the build that I played is that the wide range of cars genuinely feel completely unique. Squeezing through a gap in a street circuit in a BMW is an altogether different experience than the open wheel tracks, and it feels fresh each time you go into a new event. The cockpit view has a few welcome changes in it as well, definitely adding to the feeling that Codemasters took criticism for GRID 2 to heart. I played the game on a decently spec’d PC on ultra settings, and it looked fantastic, as well as running at a rock solid 60fps. It will certainly be interesting to see how the PS3 and Xbox 360 handle it upon release, particularly as there’s no next-gen release.

That actually brings me on to my next point. Part of me wishes that Codemasters had pulled the trigger and made this their next-gen debut title, particularly as it has a number of interesting gameplay and career mechanics to keep the game going for a while. If the PC version of the game hints at the benefits of running it on next-gen, then it bodes well for whatever they do decide to put onto the new platforms.

GRID: Autosport looks to make amends for some of the mis-steps that GRID 2 made, and promises to be a fine racer indeed, with the right blend of simulation and arcade action when the game releases on Xbox 360, PS3 and PC on June 27th.

Editor-In-Chief - NGB. Started writing for NGB in 2013, 3 years later I was running the show. I love what we do here, if you want to get involved, get in touch! PSN/Xbox LIVE/Steam - Winstano


Notify of

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments