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March 16, 2005
Street Racing Syndicate - Preview
Release Date Publisher Developer Anticipation Players Price

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Not the best graphics, but OK.
Underground street racing games have become big business in recent years. Electronic Arts have their Need for Speed Underground, while THQ has their upcoming game, Juiced which is shaping up very nicely after the aborted Acclaim release last year. This game, which was developed by Namco, has finally been picked up for release and will be published in Europe by Codemasters. Given the length of time since the American launch it's better late then never I guess.

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Is that my sisters car?
Street Racing Syndicate welcomes you to the underground world of street racing. Win races, gain status and eventually become a street legend! Customize your vehicle on the outside and under the hood. Upgrade for maximum boost with suspension, tires, turbo and NOS, and anything else you can buy or win. But choose your races carefully your opponent could have more under the hood than it seems. And watch out for the cops, they'll be looking to break up the races, and even impound your car or throw you in jail!

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Ignore the track, watch the starter!
In this game you create you character and then work your way up the secretive street racing culture. Of course the games focus isn't on your character but rather your car which can be outfitted with the latest after-market parts and gear, including nitrous. It will be possible to race for money, pink slips or even your rivals girlfriends (now that's a bet!). The only problem is that you have to keep an eye out for the cops who are dead keen to give you a ticket, impound your car or even end up in jail. Street Racing Syndicate looks like the ultimate game for rev heads.

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Nice reflections off the road.
Graphics in Street Racing Syndicate look nice, albeit slightly low in resolution and details. Still if the game holds a solid frame rate then all could be forgiven. Perhaps more importantly the developers are including full car damage which should make the races a little more exciting.

Street Racing Syndicate is a game which car lovers will enjoy, little doubt about it. Whether it can catch up to similar games in terms of gameplay and game modes remains to be seen. Expect the PAL version to be released in May 2005 through Codemasters.