By Team SimRacingWorld
11 May 2003
NASCAR Thunder 2004 puts gamers behind the wheel in a world where grudges and alliances mean the difference between victory lane and disaster. You're no longer just racing a track, you're racing a pack of 42 real world stars who think for themselves, remember your every move, and aren't afraid to pay you back. Revenge may be around the next corner or at the next race, as you scream through 23 authentic tracks or hone your road racing skills on 11 fantasy tracks. The key to success is building alliances that carry from race to race and season to season in an improved career mode that challenges drivers to manage sponsors, teams, garages, and crews while building a 20-year racing legacy. Online or on your own, racing just became a contact sport.
Key Features - Console
Intense Rivalry: Competitive AI reacts to your driving behavior, No more grinding your way through corners. In this race or the next, aggressive driving will result in retaliation.
EA SPORTS Online Racing: NASCAR Thunder 2004 is the first ever console NASCAR® game with peer-to-peer racing, online ranking, text chat and buddy lists (PlayStation 2 only).
NASCAR® Thunder Speed Zone: Hone your driving skills with a host of mini-games that focus on skills needed on the track, including passing, split time challenges, drafting, and holding position.
Spectacular Wrecks: Avoid wrecks as cars bounce of the walls and back in your path with more flipping, sparks, smoke, and fire trails.
Enhanced Career Mode: A new dynamic interface and visual cues to guide you through up to 20 successive seasons. The four major components to develop while building a racing career include sponsorships, team management, car construction, and research and development.
Lightning Challenge hosted by Daytona 500® champ Michael Waltrip: 40 new challenges from the past year allow you to relive some of the greatest moments in racing. Each challenge is brought to life with MRN's actual radio calls of the race.
Thunder License: Learn from the pros as NASCAR drivers dynamically instruct players on the driving lines, brake points, and other nuances of all 23 NASCAR Cup Series tracks.
Newly Tuned Game Engine: Intuitive basic controls when driving in a pack along with realistic simulation.
70 drivers and more than 175 authentic car skins: For the first time on console, race with a full pack of 43 real NASCAR Cup drivers. Grand National and NASCAR legends are also available.
All 23 NASCAR Winston Cup tracks and 11 fantasy tracks: Including brand new road courses that blaze through coastal sea towns, giant cities, and more.
60 events: Line up for all the NASCAR Cup races, all star events, and even fantasy night racing at real world tracks.
Happy Hour: New this year, multi-car practice sessions to help test your car setups.
Thunder Plates: Earn plates and unlock rewards including drivers, tracks, alternate paint schemes, and videos. Over 100 Thunder Plates are available.
Greater Sense of Speed: More trackside detail and a new particle system along with the newly tuned camera and audio systems heighten the sensation of speed on the track.
EA SPORTS Bio: Memory card based tracking/rating system recognizes and rewards gamers for playing multiple EA SPORTS titles.
Key Features - PC
PC-Specific Game Engine: PC drivers enjoy a new physics engine that provides an authentic NASCAR simulation. Realistic vehicle dynamics accurately model tire grip and wear patterns, handling and suspension, and collisions.
New PC Career Mode: For the first time, PC gamers get the challenge of managing teams, including sponsorships, car construction, R&D, and car setups.
Unparalleled Garage Options: The largest set of car setup options ever offered in a NASCAR simulation includes options such as fender flares, rear spoiler angles, tire pressure, wedge, gearing, suspension, anti roll bar, etc. Configure your car for each race and roll out for test sessions without affecting your NASCAR Cup standings.
Easy to Connect Network and Online Play: Revamped system allows up to 16 competitors to easily connect via LAN or online to battle in single race mode. With broadband, up to 16 players can connect with text chat and matchmaking by GameSpy.
Vertex Damage Effects: In the improved damage model, every impact is unique as individual car damage models are rendered on the fly.
70 NASCAR Drivers and more than 175 authentic car skins: Take the wheel as one of your favorite NASCAR Cup drivers, Grand National drivers, or NASCAR legends.
Scaling Difficulty Levels: Over a dozen, driver assist options help rookies get started.
Season Mode: Race an unlimited number of seasons as you compete against full 43 car fields.
Third Party Support (online community): Car skins can be easily updated, customized, and swapped. Skilled gamers can tweak all graphic and performance related aspects of the game.
Amazing Visual Effects: Race through spectacular crashes with car fragments and flying sparks. Car parts on the track will damage vehicles if struck, and shadows cast by track objects are visible on car bodies.
Pit Road Realism: Detailed motion captured animations bring pit crews and NASCAR officials to life.
Sense of Speed: Greater volume of trackside items, more things "flying" by, and more shadow reflections on the car bodies and track surface.
Bonus Daytona Beach Road Course: Take on this Fifties style classic course that spans land and sand.