Developer Kylotonn has not always had the best record with the WRC rally series, so I was surprised when I first took a look at the WRC 8 earlier this year. What used to be a relatively numerical racing series that wasn’t even that exciting for rally sports (if your heart doesn’t spin a mile a minute while racing, then something is wrong) had changed on and alongside the racing series. The developer has taken a year off the annual release schedule, and the interruption seems to have paid off: the game offers a wider career mode and the race is more dangerous than ever.
Although the fact that the WRC 8 has a detailed career mode (more on that later) is certainly a major new aspect for the series, the tracks themselves are arguably the most effective feature. They give the game a tense difficulty that it hasn’t had before, especially in combination with the increasing HP of the cars. When traveling around the world, the challenges are increasing, whether it is narrow asphalt in Germany (with a retaining wall on the side) or the dangerous rocks of Corsica. All tracks put your skills to the test and keep you busy. Even if your spotter doesn’t tell you “don’t cut” or “stay in”, there is still a lot to be careful of.
When you’re not on the track, your career hub literally provides the much needed break. Here you can create a schedule of activities for your non-racing days, including rest days when you can recharge your staff’s fatigue, as well as tests and training for manufacturing. Whatever you choose, it will help you make progress regardless of whether you get XP for your entire level (i.e. how you upgrade your R&D operations), get money for repairs, or gain morale.
With research and development of the WRC 8, you can both improve the mechanical side of your business, e.g. B. Improve the performance and reliability of your cars, as well as aspects of your team. You can unlock passive bonuses that give you more XP or morale, gain an agent that gives you more access to rare events between races, improves your crew’s overall fitness, and more. The tree offers compelling upgrades and its relative non-linearity provides useful upgrades.
The aspects of your career that you control, including regrouping your crew members, are all fairly easy to maintain, and it’s not difficult to keep your operations going with modest results. In this way, career mode does what it is supposed to do. It drives you to better results, but doesn’t bother you in detail and makes you a desk jockey.
WRC 8 is also available on Switch, but this version is not as good as the others. For one thing, the basic switch controller with its smaller analog sticks and binary on / off triggers simply does not provide the level of control that I would like. The game is playable on the switch, but it doesn’t feel as satisfying. Second, the switch version removes the game’s multiplayer, including split-screen functionality.
The WRC series is not as well known as Codemasters’ Dirt Rally, and for good reason. At the moment I can’t choose which one has the better races, but I think the stages of the WRC are more interesting and the career mode is more extensive than in the Dirt Rally 2.0. Be sure to check out the WRC 8 if you’re a racing fan.