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    Nascar Racing 2002 Season
    Author: Aaron Dahlen   Publisher: Sierra   Developer: Papyrus
    Date Posted: April 25th, 2002
    SLRating: SLRating: 9/10
    Bottom Line: Papyrus continues their tradition of releasing extraordinarily realistic and entertaining simulations that depict NASCAR racing as true as life. While not a breakthrough over its predecessor, the advances make for a very polished game.

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    The Checkered Flag Waves

    Papyrus began a franchise years ago that would come to define racing simulations in modern PC gaming. With every release of the NASCAR Racing series, the bar has been raised and new standards have been set for realism, visuals, and sound. They are certainly not alone in the market for racing sims, nor alone in the market for NASCAR sims, yet they stand above their competitors in both. While they haven't reinvented the genre once again as they did with last year's NASCAR Racing 4, the developers have polished the game with numerous general improvements.

    NASCAR Racing 2002 Season's cars move as a sum of parts, each with its own independent properties, not as a single part, as they roar around the circuit. The graphics and physics reflect this principal. The feeling is of the stock car gripping the track as it takes the turns and zooms down the speedway at 180 MPH. Although it's similar to its predecessor, this new release is the best racing simulation available today. No doubts about it.

       

    Because the goal for Papyrus has always been to create the world of NASCAR as true to life as possible, players must learn the difficulty of handling a powerful and finely tuned stock car. There are assists built into the game, which make aspects such as steering, braking, and shifting simpler, but there are no interactive tutorials to improve your driving skills. The proper touch and feel for dropping down near the apron, rolling on and off the throttle and brake, and other subtleties will come with practice, but believe me, it takes a great deal of practice. The Arcade mode, as opposed to the normal Simulation mode, makes the vehicle more forgiving, but a certain degree of finesse is still required.

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    1. The Checkered Flag Waves
    2. Visuals/Sound
    3. Gameplay
    4. Pros & Cons/Conclusion

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