Test Drive 6


Review by Matt Paprocki



Graphics: 3

Sound: 7

Gameplay: 2

Overall: 3

Ever get the feeling of being ripped off? Test Drive 6 on the Dreamcast brings back all the animosity of waiting until your birthday (or Christmas if you prefer) to receive that one game you've been salivating over in magazines for months, only to realize that it's a big pile. After six games in the franchise, you'd think that they would've got it right. The very first game in the series for early MS-DOS based computers has better game mechanics than this.

The simplistic gameplay style of Test Drive 6 is a throwback to racing games of old, but the numerous simulation aspects throw off the balance between arcade and simulation. It never seems sure what it wants to be. You're able to upgrade your car, but this serves little purpose when you can hardly stop from careening into roadside obstacles, regardless of the upgrades you purchase. The only true reason to purchase parts is to increase your cars speed, which allows you pass the incompetent computer controlled drivers.

The modes are taken directly from numerous other racers, particularly EA's Need For Speed series. The challenge mode is the meat of the one-player game which is similar to the career mode in NFS. The run-from-the-cops mode is a blatant copy of the popular series from EA and the multi-player mode is limited in it's scope.

While numerous other DC racers manage to keep up a steady frame rate, Test Drive 6 struggles with the 30 fps standard. Considering the graphics are just above mediocre, this is really inexcusable. The simplistic textures on the side of the road combined with the pathetic excuse for expensive cars that litter the streets offer little explanation for the constantly sputtering frame rate.

Taking it's cue yet again from numerous other racers on the market, the game features real engine sounds and rock/techno mix for it's soundtrack. At this point, does anyone care? The few decent tracks the game provides are overshadowed by everything else wrong with the game. It seems like a waste of decent music and sound work.

This series dates back and after 15 years of programming, we get this?? The once lucrative Test Drive name has been scarred to a point where not even plastic surgery could fix it. Gamers should expect more from such powerful hardware. Go buy and old PC and play the first game in the series. It has more redeeming features than this lazy entry.


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Last updated: Saturday, June 18, 2005 04:55 AM