AstraWare’s GTS Racing is considered a classic PalmOS game, as people who want a car racer still flock to this 2004ish title in hordes. Its developer Pazzazz Games now delivered an update called GTS World Racing and put it on a TamsPalm device for review – will it stay on top?
As usual, the game supports a variety of race modes – some of them can take up to an hour to finish:
Three car types are available – unfortunately, the cars specifications are static and can’t be changed as races proceed(no upgrading here):
The tracks are set up in sixteen locations all across the world. Each difficulty level modifies the track layout(and, amusingly, changes the ambiance) – the shots below show a few track samples:
AstraWare populated the tracks with a few occasional trees, tunnels…and that’s it. For a 2007 game, the tracks appear literally dead most of the time…
Finally, it’s possible to get the car thoroughly stuck into the terrain – if that happens, the game must be restarted:
After starting to play GTS:WR on my Treo, I was shocked to find myself unable to control the car. The steering reacted incredibly slowly – luckily, this can be fixed by increasing the sensitivity in the prefs. People wanting to use mechanical transmission are out of luck: even though the game seems to support this, you cannot assign buttons to change the gear(which leaves your car in 1st all the time). Getting out of the game on a Treo requires use of the menu – the launcher key is disabled…
The game’s sound effects are horribly annoying and essentially consist of high-pitched humming that barely resembels a car’s motor – IMHO, they are the worst ever in a handheld racing game. As for background music: sorry, no such luck either.
GTS World Racing is a decent game that – unfortunately – has been left behind by the evolution of racing games on other platforms. The tracks are plentiful, but the game’s action is sterile compared to other racers(things like nitros, car upgrades, cops, damage models… apparently don’t exist in Pazzaz Village). AstraWare usually manages to get at least the controls right: unfortunately, GTS World Racing is the exception to the rule. Cutting a long story short: fingers off until a significant update is released…
P.S. In case anyone of you is looking for a REAL racing game and happens to own a S60 phone: give Steve Townsend’s racer a pop. Its one of the best games on the market IMHO….