Project CARS: Game of the Year Edition (PC) Review

By Athanasios 24.05.2016

Review for Project CARS: Game of the Year Edition on PC

Project CARS had a simple motivation: to be the best racing simulator yet. Did it achieve becoming that? In many ways… yes! Its graphics and sound were above and beyond everything else (even when compared to AAA titles like Gran Turismo 6), there were tweaking options aplenty, and the gameplay mechanics were as further from arcade-ish as humanly possible… but, like many community assisted and funded indie projects, it was far from perfect, or at least fine-tuned. Does the Game of the Year Edition make any substantial changes?

The act of playing is great on its own, yet video games tend to give a certain motivation for making people keep doing so. RPGs include extra bits of lore to find out about, action games tend to offer side-missions that reward in the form of unlockables, and fighters open up the chance to dress Kasumi, Chun Li, or Ivy Valentine with an even skimpier outfit. Racers, on the other hand, provide incentive in the form of trophies, money for cars and upgrades, and even driver licences.

Project CARS has none of that. Everyone can drive any supercar, play with its settings to his/her heart's content, and experience all tracks, right from the very beginning. This will disappoint the vast majority of "mainstream" gamers, but it's also the best example of what this product is all about. "I don't need unlockables to play this," says the hardcore racing aficionado. "Racing is its own reward!" In many ways, this is the epitome of a simulator. No unnecessary wrappings and ribbons needed; just pick a four-wheeled beast and start having fun.

Therefore, the question at hand is this: is this any fun? The short answer is yes, especially when it comes to the realism factor. Besides audio-visuals, which are so good that they will give gearheads an orgasm (especially those with a VR device), this title gives a heavy emphasis in not behaving like an arcade racer, whether that's because of how cars act on track, or the fact that it begs tweaking with their characteristics - yeah, it's one of those "Let me try changing the tire pressure by 0.1" kind of racers.

Screenshot for Project CARS: Game of the Year Edition on PC

Unfortunately, it demands playing with all options in general, at least in the PC version, with the most notable example being the controls, which are highly dependent of the overall settings, and, more importantly, the device used - something that will give most gamepad users a headache, since it's hard to tell what sucks; them or their controller? In other words, if not able to remain steady for more than a few seconds, or hit full lock too easy… get a wheel; a wheel with decent force feedback, if possible.

What about the Game of the Year Edition, though? Usually, that means that a product is offered in its best form imaginable; "The great game you all know and love, its problems fixed, more things added, and at a great price!" True? Not really, because, while this fixes many bugs and "core" issues, it still doesn't do enough - especially when it comes to opponent AI, with drivers who, after spending a couple of minutes behaving as they should, suddenly start racing as if this was Grand Theft Auto, completely unaware of the player-controlled car.

Game of the Year Edition mostly does one thing: it includes all DLC content (though, more are being developed). What kind of DLC? Thankfully, what Project CARS needed, at least in terms of new machines, because, when it comes to tracks, there are only a handful of new ones. From classics such as the Aston Martin DBR1, Ford Mk IV, and Lotus Type 25 Climax, to young 'uns like Mustang GT, Toyota TS040, and Scion FR-S Rocket, there are lots of gorgeously realistic cars to race with - although some extremely popular brands are still absent, probably due to licencing issues.

Screenshot for Project CARS: Game of the Year Edition on PC

Cubed3 Rating

Rated 6 out of 10


Besides its lack of a unique angle of its own and a heavy "sandbox" approach, Project CARS will please those into sim-racers, since it is, undoubtedly, the most beautiful and realistic one ever made. Unfortunately, and despite adding lots of great, classic to modern, racing cars, as well as a few new tracks to try them out, Game of the Year Edition still hasn't ironed out some problems, like the extremely annoying controls and AI. Therefore, either wait for a patch, or, better yet, the upcoming Project CARS 2.


Slightly Mad


Bandai Namco





C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  6/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  0 (0 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date Out now   Japan release date None   Australian release date Out now   


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