It was announced today by Infogrames that their highly acclaimed Dreamcast racer LeMans 24 Hours is heading to the PS2 later this Summer 2001. Melbourne House has actually been developing LeMans for quite a while now, judging by the fact that it is nearly 50% complete. The PSOne version lacked severely in every aspect, the gameplay was lacking because of the choppy frame rates and the draw-in distance, the graphics were boring due to their grainy textures and generic car models. Thankfully the DC version was a huge improvement, it boasted car models like no other racer out there and they were full of rich detail. The gameplay was realistic as it was fun, the amount of vehicles available was a great choice and kept the replay value high. Basically the DC version of LeMans was everything the PS version wasn't. Now that the PS2 version of LeMans has been announced, it looks as if a possible war may brew between GT3 and LeMans. Get to know the first gameplay details of LeMans.
I only saw about five or six screenshots of the game running in action and I must admit that the visuals look slightly better than those that were found on the DC. While no public access to screenshots have been given out to us (yet), I will paint the picture for you, but if you have ever seen the DC version in play, then you'll know what to expect. Off the bat, the car models look smooth, while I may not be talking about Gran Turismo 3 chic, LeMans 24 Hours looks downright fabulous. The car models, consisting of an extreme amount of polygons, look incredibly good, and even though the game is 50% done at the moment. The environments I can't really speak for too much, I haven't seen too much of the environments, but once again, if you have ever seen the DC version in play or in a still, then you know what to expect, just think a little more polish and polygons. We will try to have screenshots of LeMans for PS2 ASAP.
Dropping the title "Test Drive", LeMans is now just known LeMans 24 Hours, and get this, the PS2 version will be an upgrade of the DC version with extra cars and tracks. LeMans will give the gamer a boastful 70 car lineup ranging from Audis, to Dodges, to Chevrolets, Porsches to Cadillacs. There will be a total of 12 tracks, including an all new track called Road Atlanta. These courses will prove themselves to be grueling and it will take more than just speed to win, skill is a must indeed. While physical and apparent car damage is not included, internal damage such as engine failure, oil leaks, fuel loss, and other performance affective traits will be included, so drive carefully. Also make note of this, for those of you "hardcore gamers" out there, LeMans 24 Hours will have a fully simulated LeMans mode where you can actually play for 24 hours! If anybody is actually is up for that I consider you a hardcore gamer, but there are other alternatives though, a six hour race, one hour race, thirty minute race and ten minute race. Currently a predicted Summer 2001 release date is being looked at for LeMans, and it looks like that may very well be the case. Keep your eyes peeled for LeMans 24 Hours, I'm looking forward to a lot of info dropped at E3 2001.