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2004 – NASCAR 2005: Chase for the Cup:

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Those who feared that EA was going to start downgrading its NASCAR games because of the company’s exclusive license had their fears mitigated by this game. NASCAR Thunder 2004 was obviously a tough video game to follow, but EA did a good job. They took a page from the NASCAR Dirt to Daytona book, and EA included the NASCAR feeder system with one major difference. In place of the dirt stock cars, they would feature the NASCAR Xfinity Series, branded as the NASCAR National Series in the game. It still featured licensed drivers from the series though. The career mode was revamped as well. There was still the option to be the owner of a team, but the mode was rebranded as “Fight to the Top.” It focused instead on a player working their way up through the NASCAR feeder system. It did not have as many original ideas as previous games, but EA made good use of them. From here on out, it was only EA that was allowed to make NASCAR video games.

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