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Project Gotham Racing 4

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Project Gotham Racing 4
Cover art for PGR4.
Developer(s) Bizarre Creations
Publisher(s) Microsoft Game Studios
Designer(s) Martyn Chudley, Ged Talbot, Gareth Wilson
Engine Proprietary
Release date October 2, 2007 (NA)

October 11, 2007 (AUS)
October 12, 2007 (EU)

Genre Racing
Mode(s) Single player, Multiplayer
Age rating(s) ESRB: E

PEGI: 3+[1]

Platform(s) Xbox 360
Media DVD-9
Input Gamepad, Steering Wheel
Credits | Soundtrack | Codes | Walkthrough


Project Gotham Racing 4 is the fourth title in the main Project Gotham Racing series, developed by Bizarre Creations and published by Microsoft Game Studios.

Development historyEdit

Project Gotham Racing 4 was accidentally leaked by a Peugeot press release for a competition for a car designed by a contestant to be featured in the game before the official Bizarre announcement.[2][3] The competition was won by Mr. Mihai Panaitescu with the Peugeot Flux.

Shortly after, the game was then officially confirmed at X06, with a trailer titled Eclipse shown.[4] The trailer was also made available to download on the Xbox Live Marketplace. The car featured in the trailer is a Ferrari 599 GTB Fiorano. The song in the trailer is "Shadow" by The Prodigy.

Microsoft announced at the 2007 E3 that PGR4 would be released in September 2007. However, Bizarre subsequently said that game wouldn't be released "until it's done" citing reasons that they had spent a substantial amount of money and time on the game. "We feel like we've got more time [on PGR4]. Last time round, we feel like we got the game ripped away from us" said Brian Woodhouse of Bizarre Creations.[5]

Having since been acquired by Activision[6], Bizarre announced that PGR4 will be their last game produced for distribution by Microsoft Game Studios.[7] There is however a possibility that Turn 10 Studios may oversee development of future installments in the series.[8]

Microsoft re-released the game under its "Classics" banner on 20 March 2009.[9]

WeatherEdit

The most prominent addition to PGR4 is advanced weather effects that affect the look of the game and the physics of the cars on the track. The weather can change from sun to rain to snow to hail within a single race. A system logged on to Xbox Live will download weather data from The Weather Channel, allowing users to set in-game conditions to mirror current weather in their respective cities.

The game simulates ten types of weather, including clear days, clouds, light to stormy rain, fog, snow and even ice. In user-created races, weather is fully customisable along with all the other race variations. In the game's expanded and improved career mode, weather is predetermined, which adds an extra obstacle for players to overcome.[10]

File:PGR4 London.jpg
A screen shot of a race in London

Bizarre Creations has released two videos showing the weather effects; one of the rain effects in St. Petersburg and one showing the snow in the Nürburgring.

TracksEdit

PGR4 includes many of the tracks of the series' previous installment, including Tokyo, New York, the Nürburgring, London and Las Vegas; plus five more cities and tracks: Shanghai, St. Petersburg, Quebec City, Macau and the Michelin Test Track.[11]

New online componentsEdit

PGR4 introduced a new online game mode, called "Bulldog". One player starts out as the Bulldog, whose job is to tag every other opponent in the game, thus creating new bulldogs as he goes. This mode is played in an open section of a city, allowing the players to turn on to any street they want. Both cars and bikes are allowed to play in this mode simultaneously.

PGR Nations was also launched with the release of the game. Players connected to Xbox Live would race on behalf of a certain country, their average stats would be added to the total of their country's through a leaderboard giving the game a certain "Olympic" feel.

VehiclesEdit

PGR 4 features more than 130 vehicles[12] , including cars and — new to the franchise — motorcycles

The game marks a return to the car balance of PGR2, with cars ranging from low-performance hatchbacks to high-performance supercars. PGR3 emphasized supercars and special models, but did have a few high-performance production cars.

Geometry Wars: WavesEdit

The game debuted Geometry Wars: Waves, which would later be included in Geometry Wars: Retro Evolved 2.

Along with an ad campaign Microsoft also released various promotional items, the biggest being PGR: Mobile which contained a code that unlocked a sneak peek trailer via the official PGR 3 site. A desktop calendar was also released via the official Xbox page.

PGR 4 is also included as part of the Xbox 360 Live 12 Month Messenger Gold Pack, which includes the game, a 12 month Xbox Live Gold subscription card, a wired headset, and a chat pad controller attachment.[13]

Downloadable contentEdit

Two new downloadable content packs were released on February 14, 2008. The two packs add a total of ten new achievements to the game.[14]

Free Challenge PackEdit

The Free Challenge Pack introduces the hydrogen-powered 2007 Peugeot Flux, winner of the 2007 Peugeot International Design Competition and two new game modes - Tourist Mode which allows the player to roam around any city in the game and Free Roam Cat and Mouse where a slow mouse vehicle must avoid enemy cats. Tourist mode is only available in 'Multiplayer' and online with at least one other 'friend'

Premium Challenge PackEdit

The Premium PGR 4 Challenge Pack now costs 80 Microsoft Points. It adds seven new cars - the 2008 Chevrolet Camaro Convertible Concept, 2007 Volkswagen Golf GTI W12-650, 2007 Peugeot Flux, 1987 BMW M3 E30 DTM, 2007 Ferrari 430 Scuderia, 2008 Honda S2000 CR, and 2008 Callaway C16 Speedster, and three new bikes - the 2007 Yamaha YZF-R1, 1995 Aprilia RS250, and 1998 Aprilia RSV 1000 Tuono R. It also adds the World Challenge Arcade Mode which is 20 new arcade events. From 9 March 2009 to 16 March 2009, the pack was included as part of Xbox LIVE's Deal of the Week promotion where the pack was temporarily available to Gold members at a discounted price of 240 Microsoft Points, 40% off the normal price of 400 Microsoft Points which it returned to a week later.

Critical receptionEdit

Project Gotham Racing 4 was met with generally favorable reviews; most criticism emphasized on its lack of departure from Project Gotham Racing 3's formula. Official Xbox Magazine UK rated the game a perfect 10/10, GamesMaster magazine awarded it 93% and Edge 9/10. TeamXbox gave the game an 8.4 citing it was more of "the same" and Bizarre should move on to bigger and better things. GameInformer scored PGR4 an 8.75 and a 9.25 as a second opinion.

ReferencesEdit

External linksEdit


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