New Releases: What upcoming games are you looking forward to?
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One of two off-road racing titles available at the Xbox's launch, the latest iteration in the Test Drive series comes complete with arcade-style gameplay and a smattering of game modes. After picking a vehicle from the available lineup of licensed trucks, jeeps, and hummers, which includes the Xbox-exclusive Chevy Avalanche, players begin competing on the career circuit. True to the game's title, courses are wide open affairs with multiple shortcuts and alternate routes to be found on each of them. Scattered about each track are a series of gates, which you must pass through en route to the finish. To prevent you from getting lost, an onscreen arrow guides you towards each checkpoint gate. By maintaining a finishing position in the top three of each race, additional circuits and events can be unlocked.
Money is awarded based upon your race ranking and can be used to upgrade your truck (three different upgrade levels are available for each vehicle) or to buy a brand new one. Naturally, each of the vehicles varies in a number of performance categories such as top speed, acceleration, and climbing. Prize money can also be used to "buy" another attempt at a particular race should your performance be less than stellar. Each of the game's locales, Moab, Utah, Yosemite, California, and Hawaii are host to nine different tracks that vary in both, style and size. The Single Race mode allows you to compete on any of the tracks you've managed to unlock.
Exclusive to the Xbox version is the Stadium mode; nine tracks of indoor racing with support for up to four players at once. A King-of-the-Hill and standard race mode are also included. Metallica headlines the title, which includes tracks from the likes of Fear Factory, 303 Infinity, Digital Assasins, and UnLoco. ~ Gavin Frankle, All Game Guide