Pacer is a new racing game for PC, PS4 and with Xbox One to follow soon – its delay being announced the day before release, but is only expected to be delayed by a couple of weeks.
The first game which will come to mind is Wipeout on the original Playstation, as well as 2018’s Antigraviator – although between the latter and this game, Pacer does feel a bit more easier to control once you get used to moving along the track, actually giving you a fighting chance. Hence, I’m not crashing into the sides as often as I did when I got started.
Naturally, I do to a degree, but that’s mainly because it’s all about the need for speed, and I’m not braking on the corners when I need to. However, similar to that, although my PC is well up to spec for this game, I had to take the settings down to Very High, rather than being on Ultra, as they make it a bit jittery.
You can shoot the other enemies on the track, but it does get a bit confusing, since the weapons from which you can select include ‘defensive’ and ‘disruptive’ options amongst others, but they either made little difference or seemlingly gave me no weapons at all. Even when I can fire, I don’t get anywhere near enough bullets when they do come along. Plus, for some of the other bonuses, I can’t work out what they are offhand, apart from the double speed. Occasionally, it will tell you onscreen when you trigger one, but that doesn’t always happen. An update would help with that, although you’d think it would be obvious to include.
For Pacer as a whole, you can either play a quick race, go through the career mode, do online multiplayer if that’s your bag, and tinker with your ship in the garage, the latter of which allows you to select different ships, customise them with cosmetics, performance, or various weapons. So all fairly standard stuff.
I’ve not tried the multiplayer as that’s not my sort of thing, although as I was playing before the release date, it may not have worked anyway with no other humans to encounter.
The ‘Quick race’ options also include a straight race with a selectable number of laps, plus time trial, Speed Lap – so it’s the fastest lap wins, Elimination – so the the last position is eliminated when the timer runs out. There are so many different options, so if you enjoy trying them all out, you have many hours of fun ahead.
Plus, there’s 14 race tracks, with career progression, so you can only do numbers 4 onwards, once you’ve built up the points to do so.
A couple of big beefs which could be resolved with an update: You can’t redefine keys or controls, which is annoying because I want to use the right trigger as accelerate, rather than pressing A on my controller (you can use keys, but no, a controller is better for this sort of game). Also, you could really use a map, to see where the the other racers are. That was also a problem with Antigraviator.
Overall, I’m not very good at Pacer, but it love sense of speed that you get. It is an improvement on the aforementioned 2018 game, but Wipeout is still the king of this sort of game.
Check out the footage I’ve uploaded for three tracks above.
Overall Score: 6/10
Pacer is released today on PC and PS4, with the Xbox One version expected in two weeks.
- Intel i7 Six Core Processor i7-5820K (3.3GHz) 15MB Cache
ASUS® X99-A: ATX, HSW-E CPU, USB 3.0, SATA 6 GB/s Motherboard
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250Gb Samsung 850 EVO SSD, SATA 6Gb/s (upto 540Mb/sR | 520Mb/sW)
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CORSAIR 750W CS Series Modular 80 Plus ® Gold, Ultra Quiet
Creative Sound Blaster Z 5.1 PCI-E Soundcard – OEM
WIRELESS 802.11N 300Mbps/2.4GHz PCI-E CARD
Windows 7 Home Premium 64 Bit w/SP1
Zalman Z11 Plus Black Mid Tower Case
- Developer: R8 Games Ltd
- Publisher: R8 Games Ltd
- Players: Single player campaign, multiplayer
Reviewer of movies, videogames and music since 1994. Aortic valve operation survivor from the same year. Running DVDfever.co.uk since 2000. Nobel Peace Prize winner 2021.