WRC 9 | Review of the PlayStation 5 version

WRC 9 | Review of the PlayStation 5 version
On September 3, 2020 WRC 9 was released on PC, Xbox One and PS4, with versions for PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X and Nintendo Switch, expected in the following months. For a few days now, however, we have been able to get our hands on the PS5 version, released earlier than the console, to be able to try out its exclusive features. The latest chapter of the KT Racing saga, based on the famous world rally championship, is in fact presented with a higher resolution, a renewed lighting management and the implementation of the exclusive features of DualSense. But before analyzing the new features, let's review together the main peculiarities of this new edition.

WRC 9 in pills

The biggest change to the play structure of WRC 9 is the social soul that the developers wanted to introduce in this new edition. In fact, the KT Racing title sees the introduction of a mode that takes the name of Club and which, without a shadow of a doubt, will prove to be a very important hub for the entire community that gravitates around this famous racing game. In fact, within the Club mode, each player can become the architect of their own competition, choosing rules, tracks, challenges and, of course, the users to whom their tour is available. Everything, it is important to emphasize, takes place directly from the game menu and without the annoying obligation of having to access external platforms.

In addition to the new Club mode, in WRC 9 there is no shortage of all the modes that we had learned to know and appreciate in previous episodes, such as the always pleasant Career where we will be called to fully manage the professional path of our driver . Season, on the other hand, will save us from worrying about the management aspects to let us focus only on our performances in the various tracks. Finally, the Challenges section offers us a really full-bodied mode that can keep players busy for a long, very long time thanks to a series of well-balanced objectives in terms of difficulty. The various singleplayer contents are obviously flanked by the solid multiplayer sector, where we will be able to challenge drivers from all over the world and battle to snatch the best possible time on a given track.

In terms of new content, however, WRC 9 offers three new different rallies, which brought the total to thirteen. Each of these new tracks manages to offer unique experiences with their own identity. In Japan, in fact, we will speed only on the road, tackling curves after curves in a rally that has always been characterized as fast and dynamic in the World Rally Championship scene, while in Kenya the situation is completely the opposite, with the dirt road that will instead be our faithful racing ground . Finally, New Zealand offers an even different experience, giving us both dirt and road tracks, but above all landscapes that can leave you speechless.

To compete in the best possible way it is obviously necessary to have a noteworthy fleet of machines and, as easily predictable, WRC 9 manages to prove to be adequate also from this point of view. WRC, WRC 2, WRC 3 and Junior WRC are in fact the categories from which the developers of KT Racing have selected the cars of the game, to which are then added more than a dozen bonus cars, which over the years have impressed the its name in the history of the competition.

In terms of gameplay innovations, however, if you were expecting updates or epochal turning points you will be disappointed, finding yourself “only” some more than due filings. There are news in WRC 9, but they are not as disruptive as many might have expected. In fact, the feedback given by the various cars during the race steals the show, which is now much more likely than in the past. In fact, the cars are now more maneuverable and reliable than before, giving the opportunity to lovers of the discipline to savor every little corner with care. The tracks are then able to restore a greater physicality, with the behavior of the car varying according to the road surface. All this, however, turns out to be excessively punitive at times, risking to really satisfy only the players who love hard and pure simulation.

The version for PlayStation 5

Speaking of the version for PS5 of WRC9, the first thing we wanted to test was the implementation of the features offered by the new DualSense controller from SONY and we can immediately assert that the result has undoubtedly left us satisfied. The haptic feedbacks are not noticeable as on other productions, such as Astro's Playroom and Sackboy, but they give back the right sensations about the terrain we will cross and the vibrations of the vehicles we will drive. As for the Adaptive Triggers, however, we can only praise the ways in which they have been implemented. Both the right and left triggers are able to return the resistance of a car pedal to the fingertips, offering an experience that is really difficult to express in words but which guarantees a much more precise and realistic control of acceleration and braking.

Graphically speaking, the differences are evident even if, to a less trained eye, the difference may not seem really tangible. In fact, WRC 9 for PlayStation 5, while showing an overview that is certainly more defined than its PlayStation 4 counterpart, may seem less flashy, darker, in the most shady phases, or excessively bright in sections where the sun beats directly on the windshield. of your car. In reality, however, the new lighting management makes the general glance more realistic and, where previously we witnessed an artificial use of lights to make everything visible, in the next-gen version we witness a dynamism that returns a decidedly realism better when you are in the virtual cockpit of the various rally cars.

Excluding this detail, however, we have not witnessed major graphic changes, but rather a better definition offered by a 4K resolution that guarantees a greater visual cleanliness. The frame rate, which remains anchored at 60 frames per second, plays the role of the "icing on the cake" of a production that, while tied to its cross-gen nature, has proved convincing in this next-gen version.

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