Forgetting about the question of how do you get a leash on a stock car, we dive into NASCAR Unleashed – a game that is supposed to take the racing genre and crank up the intensity to eleven.
But it doesn’t quite achieve that result.
This game has you picking one of several NASCAR drivers – or some guy whose picture is completely blacked out named Custom Driver. At the first go, you can only pick one or two cars from each driver, but you get more by scoring points.
The main mode is Championship Mode – a mode that consists of sets of tracks. You get the points by beating a certain place in the race, by doing a certain number of slams into other cars, trashing obstacles, sling shooting around other cars, jump far, and by not hitting any walls during an entire lap.
And by doing those feats, you also fill up part of a boost meter. When that meter is filled up, you can get incredible speed for a short while – which is always fun.
This would be a great game if the AI weren’t treating every race like a demolition derby. Some of the AI racers are not interested in winning – they want to make sure you don’t finish high in the rankings by deliberately crashing into you over and over again. These AI drivers make the game much harder than it should be and they also take some fun out of the game. The only tried and true way of winning is to get a boost ready, then use it just before the finish line.
Another problem I have with the game is that none of the cars can be modified in any way – just like in NASCAR: the Game 2011. Everyone gets the exact same car – just different paint jobs (which are also non adjustable.)
And this game only supports two-player multiplayer when four is the norm for the genre, has the bland Time Trial and Quick Race option, and has no online features.
Still, NASCAR Unleashed has some thrills in it – but not enough for me to hand out money for. RENT IT.