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Building the ULTIMATE NASCAR Video Game

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What’s Happening?

When deciding what features to suggest for the next NASCAR Video game, fans often think back to older NASCAR games. This gave us the idea. What if we could take one idea from any past NASCAR video game to include in the new game to create the ULTIMATE NASCAR video game?

  • This exact video game is unrealistic to make in time for NASCAR 25 to come out. However, it’s still fun to experiment and see what could be done when taking all limitations away.
  • For this list, we will include only one feature from NASCAR video games. If the feature was included in multiple games, we will count the game where the feature was most prominent.
  • Fans often take features from past games they hope to see included in the next entry. Nostalgia is very powerful when looking at future video games.

Graphics: NASCAR 21: Ignition

NASCAR 21: Ignition was developed on the Unreal Engine, the same engine that NASCAR 25 is being developed on. Graphics, especially with sports games, just get better as time goes on, so, this suggestion could be obsolete in the near future. For now, however, NASCAR 21: Ignition takes the top spot when it comes to graphics.

Driving/Physics Model: NASCAR The Game: Inside Line

None of the flashy, back-of-the-box features matter if the gameplay is abhorrent. NASCAR The Game: Inside Line was arguably the best NASCAR game in terms of pure driving. While it was easy enough for casual players to learn, there was enough depth to keep the more seasoned players engaged. Players were punished for burning their tires on the long run, and it forced them to manage their equipment just like a real NASCAR driver.

Career Mode: NASCAR Heat 5

While many people would think NASCAR Dirt to Daytona would be in this slot, NASCAR Heat 5 has more variability with its career mode than any past NASCAR game. If fans want to play a “Dirt to Daytona” style career mode where they work their way up the ranks, that option exists. If they want an EA-style career mode where they own a race team and are forced to grind to upgrade the team, that option is there too. While maybe not as in-depth as other games, at least the options are there for players to play how they want.

Unlockables: NASCAR Thunder 2004

EA Sports NASCAR titles were praised for their depth in all areas, but, especially the unlockables. Fans earn “Thunder Plates” by completing challenges during the game, which unlocks different paint schemes, more tracks, and other aesthetic features. This gives the game significant replay value, and that’s something that can often be missing from sports games.

Total Team Control: NASCAR 06

Total Team Control was the highlight of NASCAR 06, and it was incredibly interesting. Having the ability to switch between drivers, work with teammates, and everything else added a sense of immersion to the game. What makes this feature great to include is that it’s completely optional. Fans can choose to use Total Team Control, or they can simply ignore it if they want to.

Paint Booth: NASCAR 09

NASCAR 09 had the most creative paint booth of any NASCAR video game. Fans could download templates and create their own paint schemes via Photoshop. While a bit clunky, some tweaks to the functionality while also adding depth would be a perfect addition.

Online Play: iRacing

Thankfully, iRacing is developing the next NASCAR video game, which makes this suggestion more realistic. iRacing has the best online community of any NASCAR-related playable media out there, even if iRacing is more of a simulator than a game. Regardless, hopefully iRacing makes the online play in NASCAR 25 as good as possible.

What other features could be included in the next NASCAR video game? What would be the ULTIMATE NASCAR video game?

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Joshua Lipowski

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