Square, a company known mainly for its RPGs, has delivered its own fair share of racing games over the years. Those that come immediately to mind are the popular Rad Racer and its sequel for the Nintendo Entertainment System (NES). These were widely regarded as some of the best racing titles for the 8-bit console. Last year, the company also put out a racing game - Racing Lagoon - in Japan for the PlayStation, featuring RPG elements. Sadly, this title failed to even remotely deliver as an RPG or a racing game and was widely regarded as junk. For the new millennium the company has decided to deliver a racing title for the PlayStation2 platform called Driving Emotion Type-S. And judging from the first screens of the game in action, it looks like the game could become a major PS2 racing contender.
Being developed by Escape, a subsidiary of Square (with members who have previously worked with Dream Factory on the Tobal and Ehrgeiz series), Type-S has been in development for about a year now. Square is putting a lot of resources behind the title, as it is likely the company's first big-name game for the PlayStation2 console. Square has acquired licenses from Japanese large-car manufacturers, including Toyota, Nissan, Mazda, Subaru, Honda, and Mitsubishi, to incorporate their respective cars in the game.
Like Gran Turismo, Type-S is being developed as a true-to-life racing simulator. Making use of the PlayStation2 hardware, the game will deliver crystal-clear visuals and also the type of physics you'd expect from a next-generation console title. One way Square intends to create some very realistic action is through an inside-the-car-perspective camera (you see the interior of the car as well as the driver's hands on the steering wheel), as demonstrated in some of our accompanying screens.
Type-S will no doubt offer plenty of different Japanese track locations to race on. Two mentioned so far are the Suzuka Circuit and the Tsukuba Circuit. Judging from the shots we've seen so far, these tracks are highly detailed.
Standing in the company of such other highly anticipated PlayStation2 racing games as Ridge Racer V and Gran Turismo 2000, Driving Emotion Type-S will need to be of great quality if Square hopes to win over PS2 racing fans. Thankfully, it would seem the company is investing a lot of time and money in the game. Be assured we'll be delivering lots more details on Type-S in the near future.