NASCAR: The Game 2013 (Video Game Review)

NASCAR: The Game 2013 has arrived for the first time ever on PC via Steam. Developer/Publisher Eutechnyx has been the team behind the NASCAR video game series since EA lost the license to produce games based on the sport back in 2011. Each new release of the NASCAR: The Game and Inside Line series has gotten better, and NASCAR: The Game 2013 is no exception. The game offers the most authentic NASCAR experience complete with sponsors, creating race teams, upgrading cars and the pulse-pounding excitement that can only come from NASCAR Sprint Cup Series races, but the game is also one of the more entertaining racing games in the video game industry as well. Players won't find an open world experience such as you'd find in Forza Horizon and some other racing titles, but there is plenty to like about beginning a career as a rookie driver and carefully managing a car and team on the way to the top of the sport, and playing online with 15 other players is always a blast as well. It also doesn't hurt that NASCAR: The Game 2013 is currently available on Steam with all new features for $10-$20 less than most other new releases at only $39.99.

When starting up NASCAR: The Game 2013 for the first time, players will create their first car and be introduced to the crew chief and other members of the team while touring the central hub of the game located inside a shiny new garage. There are a variety of different menus in the game that allows players to customize their car, unlock and customize car paintjobs, purchase a variety of vanity items for use in online sessions or to breathe some new life into the garage area, or simply start up a new race. There are obviously many different ways to race in NASCAR: The Game 2013 including single player sessions in quick races or heading online to compete in 16-player events, and their are plenty of settings to customize races such as the number of laps, how much damage is taken during races and the like. There are 43 different racers included in the game with big names such as Jimmie Johnson, Carl Edwards and Tony Stewart all present as well as all 23 of the official tracks from the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series from which to choose.

There are a variety of other ways to play NASCAR: The Game 2013 too, but most players will still want to jump into their new car and begin a new career as a rookie. During the early stages of a career, the player will likely be at a severe disadvantage, since the beginner car isn't very powerful, but placing in races will earn the player credits that can be spent to purchase everything in the game including additional upgrades for the car. Even more credits can be earned through performing well for sponsors and getting enough credits to unlock the highest paying companies, and some real life brands are included in the game such as the beginning sponsor, Sprint. Career mode can be played for multiple seasons, and there is also a separate, single player season mode that allows players to take control of an established NASCAR driver and race for the championship for one season only.

Single player Challenges are also a big part of NASCAR: The Game 2013. Players can face off with the NASCAR elite in head-to-head challenges to beat the best drivers in the world on their quickest tracks. The mode can be quite difficult with players racing desperately against the clock instead of numerous drivers, but it's still a lot of fun. NASCAR: The Game 2013 also supports Highlight Challenges that allow players to relive the greatest moments from previous NASCAR seasons and change the history books. Many of these are shorter events when compared against full races, but they can also be the most fun. The developers have used a thing they call telemetry data gathered from races from the last three seasons in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series to make the moments as accurate as possible and give players a truly unique racing experience with each new Highlight.

NASCAR: The Game 2013 offers a great presentation that isn't the prettiest but still offers plenty of options that are sure to please NASCAR fans. The game itself isn't among the best looking games, but this works in its favor somewhat with the new Steam release meaning players don't need access to the best gaming computer to still enjoy playing it. The game's soundtrack also leaves something to be desired, though there is a nice selection of different genres featured in the game. Sounds on the track, the commentating from Mike Joy and Darrell Waltrip and the pit crews all sound great though and are easily comparable to watching the races on television. The actual controls in the game feel tight and responsive and allow players to customize them to fit the player's preferences. There are different driving styles based on real NASCAR racers to further customize how a car handles on the different tracks in the game, and the game supports controllers whether with Xbox 360 gamepad or supported racing wheels and pedals. The amount of unlockable items and racing modes in the game is pretty incredible and gives nearly infinite replayability.

NASCAR: The Game 2013 is the best racing title in 2013. The game offers exciting racing action that both NASCAR fans and fans of the genre can appreciate, and the flexibility offered by the new Steam release makes the Eutechnyx series more accessible than ever before. The game can be picked up for a good price at launch and easily blows by any of its competition so far this year. The game offers something for everyone with up to 16-player online races, plenty of exciting single player modes and tons of unlockables. NASCAR: The Game 2013 is a must own for NASCAR fans and a good reason to spend a little bit more money even after the Steam Summer Getaway Sale has ended. Gentlemen, start your engines in NASCAR: The Game 2013 for Steam today!

NASCAR: The Game 2013 is now available exclusively for PC via Steam and can be purchased for $39.99. NASCAR: The Game 2013 is rated E by the ESRB for Mild Violence. For more information on the game, check out the official NASCAR: The Game 2013 website.

Game Features:
  • Online Multiplayer 1-16
  • Compete as 1 of 43 Official NASCAR Drivers
  • Race through Complete NASCAR Sprint Cup Series as Official Drivers
  • Race Multiple Seasons as Rookie Driver in Career Mode
  • Steam Leaderboards
  • Steam Achievements
  • Full Controller Support

  • Game Information:
    Developer & Publisher: Eutechnyx
    Available for PC (reviewed)
    Release Date: July 24, 2013

    Score: 8 out of 10

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