We review a lot of simulators at Gamercast, but rarely do any place such a heavy emphasis on realism as NKPro Racing. Now NKPro Racing is by no means a new game, currently celebrating 5 years of the game, the developers at Kunos Simulazioni have released version 1.3 that the online community for the game have been waiting almost two years for, but was it worth the wait?
NKPro Racing is an online racing simulation that seeks to take out all of the competition out there; with a realistic weather system, unique handling for each car, a complex tyre model that affects the cars handling, and a fully interactive cockpit like a train or flight sim there’s not many similar games out there on the market apart from the big boys like Forza, F1 and Gran Turismo, and what’s impressive is that NKPro Racing actually stands up against them pretty well, with a very fair price tag and is developed for PC Gamers!
Now NKPro Racing is pretty much an online affair, so if you’re a bit of a social recluse you’ll be limited to the offline test mode that allows you to test out the cars and tracks in a controlled environment, if you’re looking for a single player racing simulation experience, look elsewhere, NKPro Racing is not for you, fans of competitive online racing games who feel that no game to date has had just enough depth for you, read on.
Whilst the game doesn’t boast a massive library of cars at your disposal, you get what you pay for, and NetKar Pro caters more for the simulation racing fan over the arcade boy racers. So you’ve got two vintage models based upon the Shelby Daytona, the equivalent of the Formula Ford, Formula Renault 2000, Formula Three, and Formula GP2, their own Osella PA-21S a hillclimb car, and the limited edition racing tune up of the Fiat 500 the Abarth 500 Assetto Corse, so you’ve pretty much every aspect of racing covered, how bout we take them for a spin?
Each car is beautifully modelled inside and out, so whether you’re the kind of driver that likes to race from outside the car, or the kind that likes to sit inside the cockpit like a real racer the choice is yours, and to top things off, everything in your car can be pressed and manipulated… well, as much as is necessary, it may not be as complex as the inside of c-stock Circle Line train in World of Subways 3, but as an added bonus you get a real time clock on the dash to help you keep track of how long you’ve been racing.
But enough about the aesthetics, you want to know about the handling and actual racing right? NKPro racing does not skimp on its realism, if you career off road onto the dirt you’re going to have a hard time clearing your wheels, if you bash into a barricade you’re going to likely lose a wing or ruin your suspension, and if you don’t take care of your engine you are going to fry it, suddenly your car feels a lot more fragile than you’d like, but you said you wanted to play a racing simulation right?
The handling on the cars is spot on and whilst you can drive the cars as presented to you, if you are technically minded, tweaks can be made to all aspects of the controls and the car itself if something just isn’t right for you, and like all good simulators it not only supports keyboard and mouse, but a variety of gamepads including Xbox 360 controllers, and a multitude of wheels, however if you are using a pad, you might want to tweak a few of the linearity settings to get those sharp corners.
The simulation doesn’t stop with the handling, races are not the be-all-and-end-all, and if you really want you can simulate a GP environment in your online races with the capability of full practice, qualifying and race setups over the 20 tracks in the game that range from standard circuits, hill climbs and more, plus, bundled with a track editor NKPro also opens up the scope for user generated content.
The developers of NKPro have a clear and respectable vision; to create the racing sim in its purest and most realistic form, if you’re looking for a racing simulator for PC that isn’t formula one centric, has some brilliant handling and for a fair price then there’s no clearer contender.
NKPro is available now in all good stores and from the official website as a free demo that includes one car, one track and multiplayer, and full game for the price of €14,90 and you’ll be hard pressed to find a similar game for as little!