Dave's Review of the Toca Demo:
The installation went very well with the Demo on my machine. Others on the news group have been having problems. The demo is being run on a Pentium 233MHZ MMX processor with Monster 3d 3DFX card and 32 Meg of memory. Needless to say I have plenty of horsepower to run this game. It runs very smooth with all details turned on. You do need at least a 166 MHZ system and a 3D card to ENJOY this game with all details on according to game articles in magazines.
This game is definately at this time an arcade type game, but has a very realistic driving characteristics for a closed body car. The fun part of racing this game is coming in contact with the other cars while racing. You can bump each other in the corners and down the straights and it feels like realistic contact with a car. The car handles well in the corners and if you get off on the grass the car slides around like a real car would. They also have gravel pits around the track, but they are hard to see. You can drive just about anywhere within the boundries of the walls of the track. If you go backwards it tells you so, but I dont know if it stops the game if you continue like other games.
There is a pit area you can drive into, but the car does not stop. I think what it does is it passes through at pit speed and any damage gets fixed and you take over after the car reaches the end of the pit area. I assume you get refueled while this is happening.
There are only three modes of racing, easy, medium, and hard. I tried all three and the hard will give you a good run for the money. There are three sensitivity settings for the wheel controller which are low, medium, and high. With my TSW wheel I put it on low sensitivity. On the other settings the wheel is too sensitive and the car is hard to keep going straight down the long straightaways. I dont know what the maximum number of laps you can run each track since it is set to only two laps and not changable. The demo track is 5 miles long.
Graphics:I would say the graphics are average for a 3D card representation of the scenery. Maybe the full game is better. Nowhere near a Nascar2 or Indy2 3D aspects but is acceptable for racing. Scenery pops up in some places rather than like GP2 where they smoothly come into play, but it is not distracting. The track has bumpers on the curves which you can hear when you go over them.
This particular track is narrow in places with chicanes and a couple of long straights and makes for tough racing and passing of AI cars. Haven't raced enough to give a good opinion of the AI, but so far, I think they handle themselves quite well racing. They do not give away their positions on the track easily. It is very easy to go 2-3 wide into the corners with the other cars, bumping and nudging each other for positions. This is where the game is fun. Doing this though puts dents into your car and the opponents.
In the demo you start out in the back and go two laps, and with the little time I've raced on it so far, I have made it to 3rd in the easy mode. Starting is like Grand Prix since it is a standing start. A series of lights start your race.
When you type in your name, it appears graphically on the car windows while racing. The AI cars usually race in packs of 5-6 cars and stay bunched up in the corners, which makes it hard to pass without some kind of fender bending. And there is no slow down graphic wise in any of the corners, even at the starts.
Car Views: I think there are 4-5 views in which to race TOCA. The best two I like are the rear and the cockpit views. In the cockpit view, you see the steering wheel turn and the hands on the wheel follow. The rear view, you see the 3D effects of the car braking, and water spraying up from the rain. I dont think the car has any mirrors, but it has a hot key that you can set to instantly see whats behind you (bummer,cheap feature).
Weather: It has four modes of weather which can be implemented in the demo. Sunny, cloudy, rain, storm, snow, and default. I tried all of them, and didnt notice much of a change in the handling of the car in the demo. Neat effects though, especially the storm and lightning. I didnt care for the snow effect. AI cars run slower in the bad weather.
Setup of the game: First bringing up the game from the desktop it autodetects what 3d cards if any you have in your system. Once up in the main menu, there are only a few menus accessed from the main menu. They are the options, start single race, championship, time trial, and link up. Only single race and options work at this time.
Options: It has sound(music,effects), graphics(high,med,low), and controller(keyboard,joystick) setups. There are no garage setups in this game, at least not in the demo. They have a cheat which is called CMGARAGE which I am not to sure what that implies. Cheats do not work in the demo anyways, at least I cant activate them.
This game is very simplistic and alot of fun to race. The menu has 9 tracks in which one can only be selected, 7-8 cars in which only 2 can be chosen. You race two laps around this track no time limit, so until you cross the finish line the 2nd time, you can go anywhere or take your time and see the tracks detail. You can run over signs, cones, etc and they break apart or scatter all over. The track again in the demo is very tight in places with many turns,a couple of chicanes, and two long straights. Again, the car handles very well around the track.
Why not a SIM: There is no way to set the cars up(no garage)or setup menus. There is a pit but you cant stop in it, at least in the demo you cant.
Thats about it for TOCA racing for right now. I will definitely get the full game when it comes out in the US. It is a fun game just to race against the AI cars and muscle and nudge your way inside them. If you have any questions about the demo, feel free to ask away.
TOCA CHEAT CODES
Entering your name as......gets you :
To access all tracks, enter your name as :
To lock tracks back up, enter your name as :
To obtain TOCA Showdown, mirrored championship, enter your name as :
most swear words!-
STEFAN VOLK ON COMPLETE TOCA
------ The drivable of the car is not easy. The Car have a very soft suspention, so the car goes back and forth.
------ The Game self have a very good idea inside, but for single-race-drivers would it be "uninteressting", because all tracks (without the first two) must be win in the championship.
------ In the reality the pointsystem is 15 - 12 - 10 - 8 - 6 - 5 - 4 - 3 - 2 - 1 ( so just from 1st to 10th Place). To get to the next race in the championship, you will need 20 points at the weekend ( 2races per weekend with seperate qualifiying) and this for each weekend.
------ You have 3 modus to drive, easy, medium and hard. The car is NOT to set up.
------ You can drive with a 133 Pentium and a 2MB-Graficcard, but it would be much more interessting with a 3D-Graficcard.
------ The Race-Opponents are not still drivers who just driving. They are like the real drivers - they also cicks you and otherones out !!!!!!!! This make the game also be harder.
------ "Codemasters" have a own Fastest-Lap-Page were everyone could sent there fastest lap. You just must sent per mail the time AND THE CODE !!!! Code? Yes, they put a code inside, that nobody could sent a fantasy-time !!!!!
------ 6 Weather-conditions are avalable: suny, cloudy, rainy, snow, (thunder) storm and standard ( linke in 1997's Race)
------ Network-racing is possible (IPX, Internet TCP/IP, Modem or Serial) or you can play with 2 to 4 Players on ONE screan.
------ When you drive to danger, you will get a "yellow card" After the 3rd Yellow Card (at one race) you get 4 penalty-points. After 5 - 6 penalty-points and after the 6th you will be out of the race.
------ After finishing the championship we will get a present ( a new car, a new track ??????? I don't know !)
------ The viewings are like Nascar 2 just 1 viewing-point is more - on the bonnet. The inside- camera is a helmet-camera. There are no mirrors inside, just with a button-press we can look back.
------ secret-features and cheats are also waiting on use like bonuscars, bonustracks,new drivingmodis........