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Test: Ridge Racer Type 4 on the PS1

Have you played Ridge Racer, Ridge Racer Revolution or Rage Racer on Play before? Racing games rather successful at the time. Here is a new descendant of the Namco line: Ridge Racer Type 4.

The series of Ridge Racer on Playstation is a hit series, to be at the same level as Need For Speed, Coolboarders, Crash Bandicoot and other Tekken … Indeed, in all, Namco has sold no less than 7 million copies of these racing games all over the world! Available in import for several months (since Japan), this fourth episode was highly anticipated … It all starts with an introductory cinematic, half-film half-cartoon, very high-fly … Without presaging quality of the game, it is in any case a good start with an explosive cocktail of roaring engines, dizzying speed, with a hint of romance (yes!). All complemented by sumptuous graphics.

Flawless features of Ridge Racer 4
Flawless textures – Screenshot

Well, in case you come to buy your Playstation, know that Ridge Racer Type 4 is the worthy successor of the series: it is an arcade-oriented racing game. There is no need for laborious adjustments, a warm-up lap or qualifying sessions. No, here the car is Plug & Play, you get in and off you go!:-)The game offers 3 different game modes. First, the Grand Prix mode allows you to compete in a stable during a championship season. For each race, you must then achieve a specific goal (finish 3rd or second, or even win) to continue the season. After a certain number of unsuccessful attempts, you will be sent back to the cloakroom! On the other hand, after each objective reached, you will be able to improve your car, even to change it for a more powerful one … Four levels of difficulty are proposed in this mode of game, as well as several trophies.

Nice speed effects on the Ridge Racer 4
Nice speed effects – Screenshot

The time trial mode will allow you to practice against the clock, with one of the 8 basic cars, on all the circuits of the game (8 in total). Finally, the dual mode will oppose you to a second player, which is always very fun. Let’s say it right away, the realization is absolutely beautiful. First of all graphically, we reach peaks: the cars are pretty (we even see reflections on the bodywork) and the circuits are absolutely sumptuous with superb lighting effects, and really detailed and bug- free decors!! The animation is not left behind, the game is flawlessly fluid, the effect of speed is striking especially that it happens to see take off the car after a bump. The headlights of the cars light up in the tunnels and the squeaks of tires are very well rendered. Just like music that is a true masterpiece alone. On each race, you can choose one of the 14 musical tracks, all well done, in different styles but always very catchy …

Screenshot of ridge racer 4Finally, if you had to award a palm to Ridge Racer Type 4 (or R4 as it is now called), it would be that of maneuverability. The car drives extremely easily and above all, with a lot of fun. It responds to the slightest solicitation, but in a gentle way (we do not end up from one side to the other of the road as in a V-Rally if we have a standard controller to play). In short, a model of playability. In turns, if you accelerate you will skid the car (quite enjoyable effect!), But can easily recover the control of the vehicle with a counter-bracage easy to achieve. Moreover, the good mastery of skidding is a key element of the game … Let’s do the accounts: we have here an irreproachable achievement, which reaches tops, even that pushes further the technical limits of the Playstation. We also have an exceptionally playable game (even by beginners!) And very fun, especially at 2. No doubt, we have one of the best racing games of the PSX. In any case, without a doubt the best arcade-oriented racing game …

The notes

  • Graphics 18/20

    Stunning graphics. Moreover, all the design of the game is pretty, even the menus were designed in the idea of ​​making a “beautiful” game. The decorations circuits are hallucinating. Sometimes it’s hard to believe we’re on PSX.

  • Playability 18/20

    A model to follow for all publishers who make us racing games with uncontrollable cars. Really nothing wrong with this point of view, difficult to do better.

  • Life expectancy 13/20

    If we had to issue a single criticism, it would concern the life of the game. There are only 8 circuits, it’s not huge … Fortunately, the game is teeming with tricks that can extend the duration of life. Let’s just mention the motif editor that allows you to draw the drawings that will be on the body of your vehicle (you can save the pattern on memory card), or an additional event that is accessible when you won the Grand Prix mode and which will pit you against the best drivers in the fastest cars.

  • Soundtrack 18/20

    14 different audio tracks, of excellent quality, in a rock / techno style. The ability to choose music while loading the circuit is a definite plus. The sound effects are excellent: the clamor of the crowd when you cross the finish line, the screeching of the tires, the noise of the engine muted in the tunnels, the sound of the engine when you switch gears …

  • Summary

Imagine driving a car that responds perfectly to the demands of your controller, in a dream setting, rocked by music from hell! What’s more, Namco certainly brings us one of the hits of the beginning of the year after the sumptuous METAL GEAR SOLID. If you like arcade-oriented racing games, R4 is a game not to be missed !!


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