Welcome to our GRID review. GRID represents a reboot for the Codemasters racing series and the tenth game in the TOCA series. It’s available for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC. Switch owners don’t quite have the pleasure of this game for their system, however, they do have the recently released GRID Autosport which is a good game in itself.
- Platforms: PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PC
- Reviewed On: PlayStation 4
- Developer: Codemasters
- Publisher: Codemasters
- Multiplayer: 2 To 16 Players Online
- Available: 11th October 2019 (8th October for Ultimate Edition Pre-Purchasers)
- Price: £54.99 (U.K), $59.99 (U.S) (Day One Edition)
- Age Rating: PEGI 3 (UK/EU), E (U.S)
- Review Disc Provided
GRID is at its heart a racing game that’s all about the cars and the tracks and unlike say F1 2019 or Dirt Rally 2.0, doesn’t force you into one racing discipline, instead, giving you access to five of them, including Touring, Tuner, and Stock just to name a few. Each one of the disciplines featured within GRID has its own characteristics for you to adjust to and enjoy. What’s great is that you don’t have to play these in any particular order and to prevent boredom setting in from say doing 50 touring car races in a row you are free to switch between disciplines as and when you wish.
Each of the six disciplines features thirteen different events made up of one to four races and one main event featuring one race. The main event is unlocked by completing ten of the events in the discipline. Each of the smaller events in the disciplines unlocks as you complete events within it.
A sixth racing option is available that combines all of the above disciplines with certain manufacturers/car types into twenty-six small events and one main event. This is the Invitationals mode and each event in this series unlocks as you complete certain objectives.
Completing at least four of the main events gains you access to the GRID World Series, which features events from all five disciplines and the Invitationals. Completing all of the events in this series unlocks the main event at the end.
With the exception of time attack, each race type gives you the option of running a qualifying lap to improve your grid position at the beginning of the race. It’s not a requirement and for some reason seems to be more of a background thing, with Codemasters choosing to just have you pushing the Square button before a race to enter qualifying.
I’ve not really counted all of the tracks in the game but there are a few and most are big names such as Silverstone, Indianapolis, and Brands Hatch just to name some. There are also a variety of different tracks from street tracks to NASCAR tracks. Unfortunately, a few tracks don’t feel like enough and it’s easy to find yourself feeling that you’re just racing the same tracks over and over again, which can lead to boredom after well over 30 hours of gameplay.
Each of the game’s tracks is a well-rendered digital recreation of the real-life version and as such, each one has its own challenges, whether that’s tough corners or amazing uphill runs that include air, GRID’s racing tracks are full of wonder and amazement.
GRID is absolutely packed full of racing events and in all honesty, I’ve still got a few left to do, but having spent countless hours getting to level 56, I’m starting to tire out a bit of playing the game none stop, which I’ve been doing in order to get this review published in time. That said I have enjoyed it and intend to finish it fully since I’m very nearly at the end as you can see from the picture below.
A racing game obviously wouldn’t be a racing game without cars and GRID, well GRID has plenty of racing cars from several different classes such as tuners right through to stock racers. There are many brands on offer as well such as Ford, BMW, Chevrolet, Nissan, and Porsche just to name a few. Cars are purchased using an in-game currency earned from racing and they can also be sold if you wish, although, in all honesty, I haven’t sold a single one, since it’s so damn easy to earn the money to buy new ones, especially with the VIP pass featured in the Ultimate Edition that earns you 10% more on your winnings for each race.
Performance-wise each and every vehicle has its own good sides and bad sides, for example, muscle cars are heavy and take longer to reach speed, yet they’re great for bashing through the crowd, while tuner cars are fast but more fragile. As you race through each discpline you’ll be able to easily tell the differences between the cars you use for each one.
It is possible to tune each car to your own liking before each race by pressing the triangle button, which brings up a tuning menu. All the basics are here such as brake bias and gear ratio. Cars can also be spruced up externally with a range of different liveries that can themselves be customized if you wish.
Difficulty And RPG Aspects
There are a few difficulty options available ranging from very easy to very hard and each one has its own range of settings that affect things such as A.I, handling and even the amount of rewinds you can have per race. I’m a bit of a softy and prefer to have my difficulty at easy on racing games and GRID has been no exception. However, I have cranked it up to very hard just to see the difference and boy it was like day and night. In easy mode, it feels like the car is doing everything it can to help you, but in hard mode, the car leaves all the hard work to you as the player.
The in-game weather system can also have an impact on the difficulty during races. So if it’s raining, for example, you’ll find that you need to adjust when and where you’ll brake as you enter a corner or you risk being flung off the track over the grass and into the safety barrier at very high speed.
Car damage is fully present in GRID, but through the difficulty settings, it can be changed to allow for simple visual damage only or full-on damage to vital components which can cause the car to basically stop working if you have terminal damage turned on. If the car stops working you’ll forfeit the event and money will be spent on fixing it up.
Money in GRID isn’t just spent on fixing and buying cars, it can also be spent on hiring a new teammate from the game’s vast selection, most of which unlock as you progress through the career mode. Each teammate has his or her own different perks and prices, so pick wisely. You’re also free to change him or her as you wish.
A nemesis system is present in GRID and through this, it is possible to make enemies out of other racers including your teammate. So if you’re the type that barges through the crowd and causes damage to other vehicles, be prepared to make a few enemies along the way who will do whatever it takes to ram you off the track if they’re close enough to you. I have to say I’m a bit fond of smashing my way through and have made a few nemeses, sometimes multiple in one race.
In an RPG-like fashion, GRID features leveling up by earning experience. Experience is earned from competing in/winning races, power sliding/drifting around corners, overtaking, and other general motorsports skills. As you level up you unlock new rewards such as stuff to customize your player card. I’m not 100% sure but I believe there’s a level cap of 99, of which after roughly 30 hours or so I am level 56.
Unfortunately, for whatever reason, Codemasters didn’t implement split-screen gaming into GRID, which is a real shame as it should be a part of any racing game in my honest opinion. If you want to play GRID as a multiplayer game, then it’ll have to be done online. GRID online allows anywhere from 2 to 16 players to face off in different events that feature in the game. At the moment it’s a bit of a Ghost town, but if you consider that I’m writing this a day before the Ultimate Edition releases, you’ll fully understand why. That said I have managed to get into a few events with at least one other player and the overall online experience has been quite good with smooth and hassle-free online gaming.
For the purpose of this review, I was sent a promo review disc with a code for the Ultimate Pack, which launches three days before the day one edition of the game. As well as earlier access to the game Ultimate Edition pre-purchasers/buyers will receive all of the following.
• 99 extra Career events (33 per season), 12 new cars (4 per season) & Seasonal rewards*:
• Season 1 (Hot Hatch Showdown)
• Season 2 (Track Day Supercars)
• Season 3 (Track Day Hypercars)
• 5 Grid Edition Carbon Liveries (each with added XP boost):
• Aston Martin Vantage GT4
• Pontiac Firebird Modified
• Chevrolet Corvette C7.R
• Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution VI Time Attack
• Renault R26
• 10 player cards
• 10 player banners
• 10 extra unique liveries
• VIP status
In conclusion, GRID is a fantastic racer that features plenty of events, cars, and online multiplayer to keep you entertained for hours. Yes it does suffer from getting a bit repetitive and its lack of split-screen multiplayer is a big concern for me, but overall the game is well worth playing if you’re a racing fan. Codemasters has yet again smashed it out of the park with a GRID game.
That concludes our GRID review. To purchase the game for PlayStation 4, you can either go to well-known retailers or find it at the links below on the PlayStation Store. We are giving away three codes for GRID over at our Facebook Page, so if you’d like a chance to win be sure to click that red link.