''There's a fair chance that someone at Codemasters has spent a sizable chunk of their time playing one of the four Project Gothams. That's not just because some of Bizarre Creation's legendary urban tracks have been aped here, but rather because of that series' requirement for perfection. As anyone who has chased those Gold or Platinum medals will testify, sometimes even the smallest error – a corner taken too widely, or a slight knock on a rival picked up along the way – can make the difference. In cases such as these, the restart is key. Its use becomes almost manic.
Race Driver: GRID is a direct response to that very ethic, but one that bypasses a large proportion of the associated frustration. Rather than starting the race from scratch, GRID allows you to reverse a small section of time, skipping through an instant replay to pick out a moment suitable for resuming the pursuit of victory. What's more, it doesn't even feel like cheating. Though purists may vow to avoid it – indeed, it's possible to both limit and even eliminate it as a feature – what's certain is that all other racing games that follow will feel slightly out of step without it.
Or, at least, just that little bit colder, more clinical. Race Driver: GRID is a game that wants you to succeed in its world, even if racing cars isn't your forte. Doing so requires Codemasters to occupy a half-way house between the technical nature of its simulation-led rivals and the slick carnage that has become the mainstay of EA franchises such as Burnout and Need for Speed. It's an altogether warm approach that leaves its mark on everything from the HDR haze that lifts the game's stunning visuals to the menu system, which is almost as much as part of the game as the races themselves.''