With Grid Legends, Codemasters has put together an extensive package for the racing game published by Electronic Arts. Lots of content doesn't mean lots of fun, but the arcade racer does a good job. 

When Codemasters put their hands on a racing game, you can expect quality. Grid Legends also offers that, but the arcade racer doesn't offer the big show that fans were hoping for. Sure, with story mode, over 130 racetracks and a huge selection of racing cars from trucks to e-cars, the developers have a lot to offer. 

Story Mode: Gri(n)d Legends

Arguably the biggest twist on Grid Legends is the new story mode, which Codemasters has put a lot of effort into. Instead of relying on purely animated characters, they wanted to give the opponents on the race track real faces, with actors - that was mostly successful, but every now and then you have to smile because of weird scenes.

In any case, Nathan McKane is mainly perceived as the ass he is supposed to be story-wise, a motivating factor that shouldn't be underestimated, because in the races you give everything to push the guy off the track. The big sensation - technology à la The Mandalorian was used - cannot be seen visually. The fact is: the campaign is entertaining, even if the mode feels like a grind in places, because you have to achieve what is required in order to unlock the following section. It lasts almost eight hours, then the story is over. The level of difficulty varies from far too easy to quite difficult, it gets quite challenging at times as in story mode. 

Test Grid Legends

The cockpit view is of course also included in Grid Legends. Source: Spielpunkt

In contrast, what's pretty terrific about Grid Legends is the artificial intelligence. The opponent AI is so good that it even feels like you're racing against human players for the top spot. The AI ​​makes mistakes, pushes off, ends up in the gang. It all looks pretty authentic and creates a great atmosphere during the race that you miss in other racing games.

Paint damage upsets rivals

Codemasters dispenses with annoying rubber banding, instead resorting again to the Nemesis system, which fans of the franchise already know from the predecessor. So opponents "remember" how you behave towards them on the track - and sometimes you get noticeably annoyed by drivers who previously annoyed you too much. This usually lasts for several races, the rivals drive noticeably more aggressively. Incidentally, the question of guilt does not arise in Grid Legends: whoever rams into the paintwork of opposing drivers, for whatever reason, can turn the drivers into an enemy, even if this happens completely unintentionally. A blemish? Not at all. Why should the AI ​​drivers be less “angry”, after all, they are ruining a potentially good race. 

The scope of the game is another strength: Different modes, multiplayer options, a route editor and other content features combined with the good feeling of racing ensure many hours of fun. The cars can be steered cleanly over the routes, even if you collide with the guardrail a little too often with the stability aid switched off - that can be rewound. In any case, Grid Legends shines when it shines, especially on the track: the courses are well designed and the models of the racing cars are pretty - but the graphical opulence of a Forza Horizon 5 does not reach Codemaster's game. At the back, the optics fall behind the crash barrier. The spectators are (usually) ugly and the rest of the trappings are solid at best. Forgive it, because fortunately it only matters during the race if you really look at it carefully.

Playtest Grid Legends

Grid Legends shines where it needs to shine as a racing game: on the track. Source: Spielpunkt

And the damage model is actually none. It's true that some paint flakes off here and there during a collision and individual parts fly around, or you lose a tire or the air slowly disappears, but usually nothing really breaks. This seems strange, especially after a high-speed crash into the gang. Codemasters was probably not brave enough here, because a violent crash should actually have serious consequences, but that happens far too rarely. There are still necessary restarts from time to time.

The soundscape, on the other hand, is at a high level: engines roar, roar and rattle - this supports the good feeling at the steering wheel. The game's soundtrack isn't that great: it's booming too, but mostly in your head. Neither the number of tracks nor the selection is really convincing. 

Infobox

Number of players: single player/multiplayer)
Age: from 0 years (USK)
Difficulty: medium
Long-term motivation: medium
Genre: racing game
Sub Genre: Arcade Racing Game

Developer: Codemasters
Publisher: Electronic Arts
Official Website: Link
Year of publication: 2022
Platforms (Test system): PC, Playstation 4, Playstation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S
Language: German
Costs: from 59.99 euros

 

Summary

Grid Legends faces stiff competition as Gran Turismo 7 marks the near release of a genre legend. This is a self-chosen fate: In a direct comparison, Codemasters will probably lose out. But until then, fans can enjoy lots of fun laps on the Grid Legends tracks. 

Grid Legends is the typical mass racing game that wants to appeal to as many target groups as possible. That's good, but it's also bad - a lot of things work properly to well, but few are excellent. Genre racers who dedicate themselves to one and not all topics from the racing world are often much better in certain areas. Nevertheless: Grid Legends is a coherent overall package in which you don't miss anything in the end. The action on the track is great, the races are fun. Even the story is convincing, despite minor weaknesses. You probably wouldn't buy Grid Legends just because of the campaign mode, but the experiment ultimately doesn't offer enough for that. As a bonus to an otherwise extensive racing game, you are happy to take the story with you. 

Where Grid Legends can really convince is on the tracks of this world: The fun begins with the starting signal. The races are dynamic, also thanks to artificial intelligence and the Nemesis concept. The driving experience fits, the details can be adjusted if desired and conveys an authentic racing experience, despite some oversensitivity. If you have to bridge the waiting time or are looking for alternatives to other no-frills racing games, you will find a qualitatively convincing option in Grid Legends. 


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Last updated on 6.08.2022/XNUMX/XNUMX / Affiliate Links / Images from the Amazon Product Advertising API. * = Affiliate links. Images from Amazon PA API