Juiced (video game)
|Distributor(s)||Sega (Japanese version)|
|Release date(s)||NA May 7, 2005 (Mobile)
NA June 13, 2005
EU June 17, 2005
|Mode(s)||Single player, multiplayer, online multiplayer|
Juiced is a racing video game for Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 2, Xbox, and mobile phone. The game was delayed for release in 2004 because its original publisher, Acclaim, went bankrupt. Juice Games and Fund 4 Games retained the i.p ownership and sold the game to THQ, who funded the project for a further 6 months to make improvements.
In early 2006, British software publisher Focus Multimedia re-released the PC version of Juiced at a new budget price as part of its "Essential" games range.
The game offers different modes including career and arcade that present the player with challenges of increasing difficulty. A player can customize the car to suit their style and unlock new ones in arcade mode. The game features nitrous, similar to that of other racing games. This can be particularly useful when the player is behind an opponent or behind time; the AI can use nitrous oxide as well.
The game system was developed at the same time as Need for Speed: Underground (which was released first and is inspired by the Shutokō Battle series), but the racing styles are realistic, similar to PlayStation's Gran Turismo. Damage is distinctively visible in Juiced, and must be repaired before the player can tune up the car.
The game went to number 1 in the UK MCV Charts and the first version sold 2.5 million units across the various skus.
There are four different Racing types, that include:
- Circuit: Standard racing, complete circuit within the set number of laps.
- Point-to-point: Race from start to finish, one lap only.
- Sprint: A Drag Race (manual controller only), the player races three opponents in a three heat series race, total of points after each heat determines the winner. The race has three tries; the one with most points wins.
- Showoff: Timed race. The player earns points by performing various stunt tricks such as: donut spins, bootleg turns, 360's, J-turns, drifting, boomerangs, etc.
With every win and/or loss, the player gains/loses respect with other racing crews, the respect earned from the crew leaders will be rewarded with the following:
- Attend (Requires: 100 Respect Points):- The player is given the right to spectate the race on the other territory (Useful to learn a few tricks, and the player can also bet on other drivers).
- Race (Requires: 300 Respect Points):- The player is given the right to race in the crews race (Provided that the player's car meets the requirements and/or has the money to participate).
- Pink Slip (Requires: 600 Respect Points) :- The player is given the right to race for the Pink Slip of a rival crew member's car (The player's car is also put on the line).
- Host (Requires: 1000 Respect Points):- The player is given the right to host a race within the Crew territory (As long as the player has enough money to create the event).
Losing Rep points may take privileges away.
- Gain Respect By
- Performance in the race and winning (Position, time gap as a leader, skilled driving).
- Gambling in the race (Money and Pink Slips).
- The appearance of the player car (The looks and upgrades).
- The player's car collection (How many cars, and their condition).
- How well the player does at a showoff event (Performing tricks).
- Placing a bet too high (Crew leaders respect the player in doing so).
- Winning crew challenges.
- Lose Respect by
- Performance in the race (Position, time gap, held responsible for damaging opponents cars).
- Gambling (If the player fails to meet the opponent's preferred bet).
- The appearance of the player car (Stock parts on the car).
- The player's car collection.
- Taking too long to place a bet (Placing a bet too high, then placing one too low afterwards).
- Extra Challenges
The player is given the option do extra challenges in the game that Crew leaders have set up, to attend: Call the crew leader and ask for the challenge, each leader has three challenges: Best lap, Speed, Skill, etc. However the event may require a specific car (No class rating), the player must have that car in order to compete in that event. Respect will not be lost after the race if the player fails the challenge. If the challenge is completed successfully, the player will earn cash and respect points from the crew leader. Winning crew challenges and earning respect are the only two ways to increase game progress.
In Angel City, there are eight racing crews that all have different racing styles and respects different forms of racing. These crews include:
|Crew||Leader||Location of Angel City||Respects|
|Urban Maulerz||T.K||San Ricardo||Circuit Racing|
|AWB||Biggi Mombassa||Campbell Hills||Sprint Racing|
|Vixens||Sue Yen||Downtown||Showoff Racing|
|The Wild Cats||Maria||Angel North Central||Crew Racing|
|Omega Tau||Jack Walker||Angel West Side||Best Car|
|Public Chaos||Melody||Southside Beach||Car Collection|
|The Lordz||Poppa Zee||East Angel Island||Money Gambling|
|Legion||Carlos Carillos||Anderson||Pink Slip Gambling|
At the Start of the game, the player will only have enough respect to attend and race on T.K's area, who is also helping the player at the beginning of the game. The AWB, Vixens and The Wild Cats will respect the player for circuit racing, much like the Urban Maulers, until the player has the privilege to race in their area.
Unpublished Acclaim Entertainment version
Juiced was originally intended to be published by Acclaim Entertainment, and released for the PlayStation 2, Xbox and PC in late 2004. However, the game was caught up in Acclaim’s bankruptcy issues and never released by them. Game magazines around the world wrote reviews on nearly finished copies of the game. It was then picked up by THQ and published in 2005.
Gameplay and features
The player can select a variety of visual and performance modifications. These customization options provide a personalized and unique car to suit the player’s needs. The gameplay includes career, arcade, sprint, race, solo, and cruise modes, as well as a new show-off mode in which tricks keep the crowd entertained.
The original version of Juiced affords 6 game modes:
- Career – This is the main point of the game – to race so the player can clock the game.
- Arcade – This is where the player goes against a variety of race types using specific cars.
- Sprint – This mode is a drag race against 3 other AI-driven cars for 3 rounds - the best in all of 3 rounds wins.
- Race – This mode is simply to race around the track with 5 other AI-driven cars, and beat them.
- Point-to-Point – This mode is a point A to B race.
- Cruise – This mode is where player is able to freely drive around a selected track, with no time limits or lap counts (Pre-lease version only).
- Show-off – In this mode the player drive around the track and perform tricks such as a "burnouts", 360-degree "doughnuts" and so on, to keep the crowd entertained.
The game has different soundtrack and intro, which contains exclusive song.
Acclaim’s bankruptcy issues
During the development of Juiced, Acclaim was caught up in financial issues and eventually filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy before Juiced was set for release in late 2004. It was picked up by THQ and further delayed as Juice Games was given more development time to refine the game.
Copies of the game and promotional items
After Acclaim went bankrupt, they held an auction. Most of the promotional posters were destroyed, but a number of them made it out and were sold along with a few other items. The promotional posters are highly coveted around the world today; a set of them was seen on Ebay America in early February 2007. Copies of the game can be pirated, but no originals are known to exist.
Juiced was met with a mixed reception. GameRankings and Metacritic gave it a score of 76.67% for the Mobile version; 71.45% and 68 out of 100 for the Xbox version; 67.48% and 68 out of 100 for the PlayStation 2 version; and 66.95% and 63 out of 100 for the PC version.
Right before the bankruptcy issues by Acclaim, Lisa Mason of Game Informer gave the beta version of the game a score of 5.75 out of 10 in its October 2004 issue, stating that it "falls to the lower end of the goodness scale. [...] Depending on what I am doing, I yearn for any of the more-polished (and more playable) racing titles that it tries to emulate. Juiced 's particular mix of sim and arcade racing is best summed up as a failed experiment." After the THQ acquirement and redevelopment of the game, however, Mason raised the rating to 7 out of 10 in her Second Opinion in the magazine's July 2005 issue, calling it "an exponentially better game than it was when I reviewed it many months ago. Does that mean that it's a super awesome, edge of your seat thrill ride? Not so much, but it does have its charms and is a nicely varied street racer." Matthew Kato of the same publisher agreed, giving the game a better score of 7.5 out of 10 and saying that it "certainly has the makings of an average street racer, with lots of customizables and affected street appeal."
The Times gave the game four stars out of five and stated, "The gameplay is varied enough to maintain interest, and its clutch of quirky distractions adds to the experience. After all its development setbacks, it's definitely worth a spin." The Sydney Morning Herald gave the PS2 version four-and-a-half stars out of five and said that it was "instantly approachable". However, Playboy gave the same version 70%; likewise, Detroit Free Press gave the similar version two stars out of four, criticizing the costly upgrades, but praising the musical selection that "features a nice mix of techno, rock and hip-hop."
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