Ridge Racer 6 does not offer realistic driving physics, nor does it have machine guns, police chases, or crashes. But it's a very stylish, focused, and accesible arcade racer than runs at 60 frames per second. Unlike many games, Ridge Racer 6 meets the criteria for THE LEAST A VIDEOGAME CAN DO TO BE GOOD.
By untapping the gas or braking while cornering, your car would magically slide along the track like soap on ice, even through sharp corners, until you regain control. Unrealistic? Of course. But doesn't it sound like fun? For better or worse, the Ridge Racer series never changed the premise of its signature drifting even after a decade, only recently adding nitros for a surprsingly effective dose of depth and fun. Ridge Racer 6 is a worthwhile, excellent, heartwarming all-american sequel and update to a classic racer.
The 15 courses in the game are gorgeous. One of my favorites is Sunseight Heights. The course takes place during a sunset, and from the left of the starting line, you can see daylight on the sea horizon. As you drive up and around into the canyons on the opposite side, you'll find yourself in the dead of night. Coooool.
The graphics are clean, sharp, and colorful, even without a high definition TV (I use a normal TV with S-Video) ... The only graphical flaw, just as with most racing games before it, is the the embarassingly weak 2D crowds, cardboard cut-out style. But I don't even mind that, since the game isn't trying to be realistic in the first place. And thankfully, the crowds only appear in the stands which are at the starting/finish line.
Ridge Racer 6 supports Xbox Live. (as well as worldwide time attack rankings) The handicap setting allows for closer races, making the races more fun and social.
The gameplay is somewhat shallow and the single player mode is repetitive but it's FUN and anyone can play it. The game is only $20 new and it's at least worth a rent. Oh yea and the soundtrack is pretty psychadelic.