So you like Need For Speed and like Porsches? If you do remember, NFS has a game in its series that features Porsches and Porsches only. It’s called Porsche Unleashed – with basically every Porsche you can imagine. Starting in 1950, you start out driving the Porsche 356, which to an undiscerning eye, looks like something Hitler commissioned back in the 1930s.
The game feels like a late-90′s Need For Speed game, and most similarly to the fourth Need For Speed, which happened to be called High Stakes. This time, however, you do not get the luxury of having a selection of marques nor wild police chases as you do in that game, but you get to drive every Porsche you can imagine produced before the year 2000, which means none of today’s four-door Porsches.
The game is certainly engrossing. The races are basically one-way cannonball runs, where you race between several opponents in similar cars, or you can choose to be a test driver, which will allow you access to a nice set of wheels but you’ll do mildly pointless tests such as shaloms. It’s a bit like Gran Turismo’s licence tests, except even more pointless. I prefer the Evolution mode.
The game is a bit tough to play on a keyboard – no denying – because when you press left or right, the computer assumes you want full-lock, putting you into a slide. The driving physics is rather realistic, and because we’re talking about Porsches here, it means that the throttle is something you wanna be careful with, and with the keyboard, your throttle is either floored or zero, which makes you get wild trailing throttle oversteer.
Thankfully, the game runs excellent with steering wheels. I tested the game with my Logitech G25, and it ran excellent. The force feedback was great, letting you know when you’re out of grip and what kind of surface you’re on. And the ability to modulate the throttle and brake is a great way to get control over the wild beast of a Porsche.
At the same time, however, the beginning stages seem too easy. You’ll inevitably get first all the way as long as you don’t spin out, and that means that if you have a steering wheel, you’ll probably breeze past the 50′s. The tracks are extremely wide, and the speeds are low – maxing out at 140km/h or so in a 356B.
Nonetheless, I’d say while this game runs great on a netbook, the need for a steering wheel to play this game effectively and enjoyably makes this game not a really good contender for a netbook game. Of course, you could play this game on a big screen using the HDMI-out on your netbook or the regular display output to maximize the game’s potential.
The game runs well on the integrated graphics card that your netbook came with, so there’s no need to worry about performance. But while this game has a lot of potential, this game doesn’t serve as a good game to play on-the-go, as you really want a big screen and a joystick at minimum to enjoy discrete control over your car. Without this, driving the Porsches is akin to driving on ice.
Extremely wide range of Porsches
Great driving realism
Nice in-car dashboard view
Not playable without a steering wheel
Not enjoyable without a big screen
If you’ve got a steering wheel and a big screen, this game takes the cake. If you don’t, the game’s pretty much over.
Graphics: Pretty average.
Work needed to get game to play: Minimal; runs well on low-powered netbooks.
Image: Gameolio, Anandtech
What is Netbookist?At Netbookist, we're commited to finding out the limits of a netbook, especially in gaming. We're also interested in optimization, tweaking, and pushing the netbook to the cutting edge.
MOAR!amd atom baldur's gate bored downloadable fps free fusion future games god game google google plus graphics hack and slash hardware health intel intel atom invites ion 2 minecraft mmorpg modifications multiplayer netbook netbook as main computer news plus plus invites processors rpg shooting simulation star wars storyline strategy terraria the sims tips ultrabooks war warcraft windows windows 7