Midnight Club 3
A couple of weeks ago I picked up Gran Turismo 4 with the intention of reviewing it for the DP Wire. The problem is, I quickly discovered I don’t like the Gran Turismo series. I didn’t like #3 and I didn’t like #2 and I didn’t like #1, and I’m not really sure why I thought I’d enjoy #4. It’s great eye candy, but eye candy is a dime a dozen on modern consoles. I don’t care about the realistic angle of the game; realistic cars at high rates of speed cut me off every day on my morning work commute. Call me old school, but if I’m going to spend my time driving around in a video game, I want to go fast, I want to live dangerously, and I want to be cool. Midnight Club 3: Dub Edition lets me do all those things.
Midnight Club 3 (MC3) picks up where MC2 left off, and is everything it’s predecessor was and more. MC3 has bigger maps, more traffic, and more vehicles than ever before. Over 50 licensed cars are available this time around for gamers to race, modify, and smash. To go with those cars, you’ll automatically inherit all the obtainable skills from MC2 to go with them (such as nitrous, drifting, turbo, two-wheel driving etc) as well as the opportunity to earn several new skills like agro, roar and zone. Once you’ve mastered both the way your car looks and rides, you can take your set of wheels online to go head-to-head against racers around the world (MC3 supports online racing for both the PS2 and the Xbox, as well as the Xbox’s System Link).
I’m not a huge fan of import racing (whoever convinced an entire generation that a Honda Civic is a racecar is a genius) and fortunately MC3 includes some motorcycles, SUVs and muscle cars for us less-hipsters to cruise around in as well. Regardless of what you think about big wheels on little import cars, MC3 is a blast to play. Like GTA3/GTA:VC, Rockstar has loaded up these virtual versions of San Diego, Atlanta and Detroit with tons of items to collect and places to drive. The longer you play and the more races you win, the more your map will expand. And of course, the more races you win, the more things you will unlock and money you will earn, which can be used to “pimp your ride”. Of course, all that pimping is completely optional; if you simply want to floor it and go fast, you can do that too. I haven’t read up on the technical specs, but the game’s engine seems to hold its own with Burnout 3 and NFSU2.
Midnight Club 3: DUB Edition is currently available for the PS2 and Xbox and is coming soon to the PSP.