Konami of Europe has announced that it will celebrate the 100th anniversary of the legendary Le Tour de France cycling competition with the release of Le Tour de France: Centenary Edition for the PlayStation 2. The racing game, which will be released later this year to coincide with the 2003 tournament, will feature an officially endorsed roster of teams and riders and six painstakingly re-created tracks modeled on those of the 2003 event.
The official teams in the game will include Team Telekom, US Postal Service Presented by Berry Floor, Team CSC, Crédit Agricole, Sidermec, Once--Eroski, Fassa Bortolo, Cofidis, le Crédit par Téléphone, ibanesto.com, Kelme--Costa Blanca, Quick Step--Davitamon, and Lotto--Domo. Le Tour de France: Centenary Edition will also feature each team's official rider, with players able to don the cycling shorts of the likes of Roberto Heras, Tyler Hamilton, Christophe Moreau, Stefano Garzelli, Joseba Beloki, Michele Bartoli, David Millar, Francisco Mancebo Pérez, Oscar Sevilla, Richard Virenque, and Robbie McEwen.
In addition to the arcade, time trial, and two-player head-to-head modes, the game will feature a career mode in which players assume the role of a young rookie who must win races to accrue prize money for training and attract sponsors for future races. It's not yet clear exactly how the bikes will be controlled in the game, but Konami of Europe has stated that the game will incorporate an all-new pedaling system that takes rider stamina into account, and that players will be able to perform a tuck move for extra speed or lean back in the saddle to slow down and improve their cornering. Le Tour de France: Centenary Edition will also re-create the team-based elements of the sport, with players able to pick up energy-boosting drinks en route or even use teammates to shield them from the energy-sapping wind.
Le Tour de France: Centenary Edition is scheduled for release in Europe later this year. No North American release has been confirmed at this time, but we'll bring you more information on the game as soon as it becomes available.