Project Gotham Racing 3 E3 2005 Preshow Report

The Xbox's firstborn racing series is headed to the Xbox 360. Get a sense of what you could expect from the game.

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Though Microsoft had officially confirmed that Project Gotham Racing 3 was in development for the Xbox 360, we finally got a first glimpse at the game during the MTV unveiling of the next-generation console. The original Project Gotham Racing and its sequel delivered some great racing experiences for the Xbox, so the stakes will surely be high for this next installment. Sure enough, our admittedly-brief look at the game made us very excited to see more.

The most striking aspect of the visuals we saw had to be the realistic in-cockpit camera angles that occasionally flashed onscreen. Most racing games offer a static in-cockpit camera, usually with a totally transparent heads-up display--so it's like you're disembodied, rather than at the wheel of a high-performance sports car. Well, PGR3 seems to offer that high-speed you-are-there feel that most racing games lack. We could see the driver of the car shuddering from all the G forces, even as the car itself shook as it roared across the pavement. Whether the game will really be playable from these angles remains to be seen, but it's a cool effect.

The exterior shots of high-performance concept cars and at least one nice Lamborghini looked great...though, not necessarily so jaw-droppingly great as to be suggestive of a massive technological leap, especially in the wake of the outstanding, recently-released Forza Motorsport for the Xbox. We never got to see more than a couple of cars onscreen at a time, either, and the action all took place on what appeared to be a single track, set within an urban environment that could have been Los Angeles or something similarly filled with high-rises and spectators. Still, it was a satisfying first look at the game.

Previous Project Gotham Racing titles have flaunted massive amounts of content--near-countless unlockable cars and tracks, plus tons of music. We'd expect nothing less from PGR3, in addition to some fancy Xbox Live support. We'll bring you more information on this one as soon as possible.

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