Nascar ’98

Nascar ’98
Game Name: Nascar '98
Media: 1 CD-ROM
Publisher(s): Electronic Arts
Developer(s): EA Sports
Genre(s): Racing
Release Date: 31st October 1997
Serial Number: T-5028H-50
Region: PAL

Nascar 98 menu ScreenshotElectronic Arts still runs this franchise to this day, and it all started with this game way back in 1998.
Well actually that’s not strictly true, because this is actually a sequel to Andretti Racing, but with a change of licence, so really NASCAR ’98 was the second game in the series.

I’ve already reviewed Andretti Racing on the site and awarded it a respectable 7/10, whilst there were many flaws to the game, it was huge, and in career mode it became engrossing, so what did EA do with a year to improve the game?
I’ll tell you what they did, they ruined it.

With the Andretti dynasty not involved out went the comprehensive career mode of the original, out went the Indycars, cos obviously with the NASCAR licence they could not be featured, and out too went half of the tracks. All the good tracks because they belonged to the Indycar circuit, all of the interesting street circuits gone.

Nascar 98 gameplay screenshot

I understand why this had to be, this is an official NASCAR licence, and it is faithful to the NASCAR season, but in effect EA have thrown away half of the game, and sadly the half that they threw away was the good bit.

So what are we left with?

A load of boring ovals, that all play exactly the same way. I love watching the Good ol’ boys on telly, I really am a NASCAR fan, but an exciting videogame it does not make.

Whilst there are loads of circuits, all you ever do is steer the car left, this is tedious enough but the car handling makes the game about as much fun as drinking vomit.

The game handles worse than Andretti Racing did, in fact the handling is some of the worse that I’ve ever come across on the Saturn, and I’ve played Scorcher.

The music is dreadful, as you’d expect, the sound effects will irritate rather than improve the experience.

Nascar98 in game Sega Saturn Screenshot

I really am struggling to find anything to say that positive at all….there must be something…hmmm….oh yes, it comes in one of those hard backed EA games cases.
They are very nice boxes, very strong, your game and sleeve won’t get damaged.

I really can’t think of any other redeeming features. It had all of the official drivers in it, which was nice, and seeing as NASCAR drivers never seem to retire many are recognisable even today, but really the Saturn can do so much better than this, and so really can you.

I bought this game so that you don’t’ have to.

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