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    R4: Ridge Racer Type 4 (PSX

    Written by MystikaL

    Game Information

    Players - 2

    Dual Shock - Yes

    Release - 10/20/99

    Memory Pak
    Steering Wheel






    It has been five years since Namco started the Ridge Racer, wow, time flies, doesn't it?  Ever since the release of the original Ridge Racer, Namco has been improving it greatly every year.  Ridge Racer's beautiful graphics, lavish soundtrack, and outstanding gameplay can satisfy anyone's racing needs even those who are not die-hard racing fans (like me).  It is difficult to notice; though not terribly impossible that the cars are not modeled after real life ones.  You also can not powerslide in racing—at least without coming out alive.  If you’re looking for a racing game that gets as realistic as possible without actually driving the car, you should take a look into Gran Turismo 2, which has 340+ cars, 48 tracks, excellent graphics, and the most realistic style of racing ever.


    Click image to enlargeYou are a racing extremist, who is asked to join four different racing teams, which you can take your pick of.  The difficulty changes depending on which one you choose.  You’re then allowed to choose from four different car manufacturers, each offering various styles of cars.  When you go through the heats (races), you will gain new cars as you go along, some upgraded others brand new.  Some of the cars turn better then others, so you will have to fool around with its powerslide ability.  Others have a lot of drift and powerslide like a dream.  Once you go through all the difficulty levels and heats, you won't get all the cars in the game, so you will have to continue to beat levels, etc., to get all the rest of the 48 cars available.

    There are only 8 tracks; something that I think should have been improved on from the first of the series, which only included one track!  How can you have replay value when there are only eight playable tracks!  That's pretty bad when some people try and compare this game to Gran Turismo, which has 48 tracks, and over 300 cars.

    Also, the AI has problems, though not major if you get into the higher difficulty levels.  Even at a medium difficulty level, once you pass the cars, they will never pass you again.  If they do pass you, you probably ran into a wall and got stuck.  It seems as they just slow down and never even try to place once you pass them.  On the highest setting it's different, though.  They will pass you a lot and they will kick your ass unless you box them out.  I recommend using the fastest car available for this difficulty setting, and make sure you practice a bit with the powerslide ability! You don't want to be running into walls on the last lap trying to pass up that first place car now do you?

    The replay mode at the end isn't as cool looking, or well designed, as Gran Turismo 2, but it's definitely something you can sit there and watch for a bit without getting bored.  Watching your car powerslide around the turns with the camera in front is incredible!  The menu screens, and all the track selection areas, along with the options menu, are all easy to use and to get used to.  There is around a 5-10 minute learning curve if you have played Gran Turismo 2, but if you've never played any other racing game(s), and are new to the Playstation itself, it will take you a good hour or two to get used to the control style and powersliding.

    Single player

    Click image to enlargeThe single player is one of the best in the racing genre for the Playstation, with an excellent Gran Prix mode, lots of cars, all which provide you with long hours of great racing fun!  The game is easy to figure out, and if you're not doing that well in the race, you can easily restart the race. 

    You can choose 1 of 4 team(s), all, which vary in difficulty.  The four car manufacturers also vary in difficulty level from how hard the car is to turn, to how well it powerslides.  Depending on which one you choose you will be provided with only 1 style to choose from at the beginning, which will increase after you win races.

    There are only eight tracks, so the game will get boring in Gran Prix mode after you beat and feel as you've seen enough of the same tracks.  What Namco and Playstation really needed is a track editor so people could create, download, and install new tracks to large memory packs, or items like the pocket station.


    Click image to enlargeThe multiplayer is fun and inviting a few friends over to converge in battles of Ridge Racer is an excellent idea.  I would, however, say after an hour of racing this game can get really boring, unless you love the music, which is incredible.  Spend about an hour playing this, and head on over to the store and get Tony Hawk's Pro Skater, a game which will be reviewed shortly and is absolutely incredible!  The multiplayer of Ridge Racer is great, and even though it only has eight tracks, it really shines.

    The game allows to players to go head-to-head on various tracks (again up to eight only), and you can choose from a wide variety of cars, even if you haven't achieved them all yet.  Be careful which one you choose though, some really do powerslide like shi*t, and with those you will be running into walls all night long.

    Overall the multiplayer experience is great, and from my point of view, is once of the best experiences in a racing game I have ever had.  If you are going to buy a game, get this or Gran Turismo 2, or how about both!


    The soundtrack to the game is stunning, and various in sounds, mostly techno.  The Ridge Racer series has always had a stunning techno style soundtrack, and this is no exception—In fact, it's the best out of all of them.  (If someone chose this game over another racing game like Gran Turismo, partly because of the sound.)  I would have agreed with them.  The sound is something you could listen to over and over again.  Namco achieved their goal here—create a game that would compete with Gran Turismo.


    Click image to enlargeIf you want a racing game that has an excellent soundtrack, lots of cars, snazzy gameplay, and a long replay value, go with R4 Ridge Racer Type 4.  If you are a racing extremist though, and like the more realistic style of gameplay, along with more tracks and cars, pick up a copy of Gran Turismo 2.  I would still advise you to pick up a copy of this too, though.

    Namco's goal here was to create a racing game that would compete with Gran Turismo 2, while having a more original feel to the game than copying the realism in Gran Turismo.  Don't get me wrong, the game is realistic, but the elements that aren't in normal racing found here, are amazing.

    Namco achieved their goal, and more.  Not only is this game fun to play, the replay value is extremely good, mainly because of the multiplayer will make you always want to come back and play a quick game.

    As good as they come!
    The sound is amazing; the techno soundtrack will keep your ears listening for hours upon hours.>
    48 Cars, 8 Tracks, 4 Difficulty settings—some of the best track architecture ever, and an excellent multiplayer mode.>
    Lasting Appeal
    With the multiplayer feature, you'll be playing this one for a long time. Unfortunately, there are only 8 tracks, something that Namco can improve on in the next game.  If there is one…>

    << Rating: 93 >>
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