This year is shaping up to be a good one for racing fans on the Xbox One. With WRC 7, the official game of the World Rally Championship, we get another rally focused titled. The last two titles in the series had mixed receptions, will WRC 7 take away some of the concerns? Buckle up and start your engines as we are set to find out.
- All the official tracks from the current WRC season are in the game, and they look great this time around. Not only in the amount of detail but also their function and design. You feel every lump and unevenness in the road. Plus, it’s just fun to watch the real WRC and recognize the track sections they are showing.
- The day and night-time and weather effects are well done. It looks great to see the sun rays through the trees or watch your headlights light up the road ahead of you in the dark.
- Current weather and road conditions really impact your driving. Snow, ice, gravel, tarmac, dust, rain, they all make their presence felt at one time or other.
- Career mode is a quite good fun. It has me coming back for more and will do so long after this review. You start in the junior WRC and climb to WRC via the WRC 2 competition. Along the way, you will sign contracts with different teams. Depending on how you did that season, these can be teams from the next step up.
- The sound is mostly spot on. After a couple of hours, I knew when to shift and what gear I was in by the sound alone.
- The co-driver callouts are great, and you get quite a bit of customization with them. You can adjust the general timing to be earlier or later than the default. You can set the detail level for directions, hairpins and hazards separately (detailed or accessible) and you get the choice of several languages for your co-driver. I have everything set to detailed and really appreciate the quality of the callouts. Over many hours and miles, I have only encountered some very slight errors in the callouts and nothing that ruined the drive for me.
- The game’s core features, the tracks, and driving are excellent this time around. The basic features you can expect are there, with solo career mode, local and online multiplayer and weekly challenges. However, the game doesn’t add many features beyond that. While the driving is what really matters, I would have liked to see a more complete set of features with some extra functionality thrown in.
- The cars handle great in general with possible the exception of braking. The cars feel like braking to easily, not hindered as much by their own mass as I would expect.
- This game is not very beginner or casual player friendly. There is no tutorial, and if you are new to rally driving, you will either just have to persist or learn the basics elsewhere first. While not a full-on simulation, this is definitely not a pure arcade racer either.
WRC 7 is a real improvement for the series and for now it has become my go-to rally title. The game isn’t perfect, but it does many things right. The tracks look mostly gorgeous and are an absolute blast to navigate. The game isn’t easy and definitely not for everyone, casual drivers will probably have a tough time. But anyone willing to put in the time and learn can have many hours of fun with this one, and it’s not hard to recommend at least checking WRC 7 out to rally fans and experienced rally gamers.