Our Rating: 7/10
Released on Steam Early Access on May 7th, Drift21 promises to be one of the most detailed car simulators ever made, with a total focus on creating the best car for Drifts. It gives you various options to customize the exterior and interior of the car. Most importantly, customize each part of the mechanics in a way that we’ve never seen another game do.
If you ever wanted to know how to assemble an engine for a real car, then Drift21 is here to satisfy this curiosity. In garage mode, you can build an engine from scratch. You can customize every little detail and every little bit of the engine. There are at least 2 or 3 variations for each one. Gearbox, air filters, spark plugs, belts, exhaust. Everything that is part of the car, and affects its performance, you can change.
If you are someone who doesn’t know anything about mechanics, you may end up getting lost. If asked, many wouldn’t probably be able to say what the difference is between performance or sport type air filter, or what it affects the car’s operation. Fortunately, the game gives you a little explanation if you open the detail panel of the piece.
It is necessary to test its performance of the newly assembled car in the simulators. On this screen the game will also give you a little help on how to improve the car, saying which parts can be improved.
Even if you are not someone who loves cars, the level of detail that the game presents is surprising, and even charming. Finding out how complex these machines are, and learning a few things together, is fun and piques curiosity. You might feel like a child disassembling a toy to see how it worked.
The Good, the Bad, and the Overall Experience
When it comes to assembling cars, the game is full of detail and tries to be as realistic as possible. The upset comes because driving these cars can be extremely difficult. If you are used to games less committed to reality, like Need For Speed, you may find that performing drifts is something simple: accelerate, apply the hand brake, and make the curve skidding, singing a tire, accumulating millions of points.
Drift21 comes to show you that it is not that easy. The level of precision needed to be able to control the car around corners and perform maneuvers is far beyond an arcade game. But the physics of the cars are strange. It seems that the game really tries to get you to do drifts, and the car ‘rolls around’ so much that it is difficult to keep it straight, giving the impression of driving over an ice rink.
The available circuits don’t help to make things easier either. The selection is small, with only 6 tracks. All of which are short, very tight circuits. There is no room for mistakes, and making mistakes is what will happen most. The game does not give you the opportunity to learn the skills of how to control the car in curves, as you will be constantly putting it on the grass outside the track.
Anyone who is used to other games, and has experience with simulators, may get along just fine, but for those who are a beginner, it is frustrating. A tutorial on how to play would have helped, in addition to more spacious circuits.
Not enough content
Speaking of driving, the only thing you can do is go for a ride with the cars. The game features only 3 game modes: point challenge, time challenge, and free driving. These challenges are extremely short, can be accomplished in 10 seconds each if you hit the logical drift. Otherwise, you will need to keep repeating it dozens of times to get any score. For now, there is nothing more elaborate to do.
If you are a fan of cars or want to learn more about the smallest details of how to prepare a ‘tuned’ car, then DRIFT21 might be worth it. However, not with the price currently.
The customization options and freedom to assemble the car are very interesting, but the racing part is very small and there is not much to do.
The selection of tracks and cars is quite limited, but it seems to be gradually improving as the developers added a track from Japan and a BMW car in a recent update. The graphics are very good, especially at the level of details in every piece.
In the music department, there is only one that touches the main menu, and it’s a pretty nasty dubstep. Being an early access game, keep an eye out for updates and what else developers will add.
We hope to see more tracks and game mode, and maybe a tutorial that can teach beginners how to get started in the world of drift.