Home Reviews 4.5/5 Review New Star GP Review

New Star GP Review


There’s no doubt that the racing genre in the video games scene is thriving. Whether it be with the open-world of The Crew Motorfest and Forza Horizon 5 or the depth of on-track action of F1 23 and Forza Motorsport, if you want to get behind the wheel of a car and race, you are well catered for. 

But what if you prefer the retro, or the more arcadey way of racing? Well, there are multiple options there too; the Hot Wheels Unleashed series or Formula Retro Racing World Tour are probably your best bets. Or at least they were. Because I think New Star GP trumps those retro arcade racers. And then some. 

New Star GP review 1
New Star GP is a classy retro arcade racer

From the New Star Games team, New Star GP is a very classy arcade racer. It comes with a visual style that wouldn’t see it out of place back in the 1990s, but it is still complete with crisp clear details, tons of colour and humour injected throughout; it works here and now. In fact, in terms of those visuals, the cars look great no matter which of the multitude of camera angles you decide to use and the circuits you’ll race on will be extremely familiar to any fan of F1; albeit shortened, artistically changed to suit the kind of game New Star GP is – a short, sharp, swift racer. 

There are two game modes which will occupy your time in New Star GP – the main Career, and that of the Championship option. For the most part, we’d suspect you’ll want to jump into the former, as it is that in which the meat and drink of New Star GP is found. But should you prefer the opportunity to race alone against the AI, or with friends locally, challenging for medals and championships, the latter is more than capable of providing. It’ll let you set up those championships to your own specific needs too. It’s just a shame then that New Star GP has zero online functionality – we’d have killed for the chance to get behind the wheel to battle it out with some mates online. 

It is what it is though and we cannot fault New Star GP for not coming loaded with content. That campaign is super deep, taking racers through five decades of GP action, working from the retro angle of the 1980s cars and drivers to that of the modern day, right up to the 2020’s. There’s a big difference in each of these too, with cars getting progressively faster as the years pass by. We could swear that the latter cars stop a hell of a lot quicker too; braking technology, eh!?

Each decade comes with ten main GP races; do well and compete in those and you’ll find future decades opening up. And those Grand Prix’ are fast little affairs too as New Star Games have tried to ensure that a single lap of any circuit will take you ‘roughly’ a minute to complete. With limited laps, most events can be over in six minutes or so – at least if your driving skills allow. 

New Star GP review 4
There’s a big old career mode in here

What’s nice – at least we think it’s nice – is that the races found in each event come with limited rewinds to help get you out of trouble. If they run out? Well, it’ll be down to your skills, unless you wish to forgo your race and start again. It brings tension to New Star GP, and when combined with a lack of rubberbanding, will mean that – ultimately – it’s your driving skills that will see you prosper or fail. 

Don’t think that it’s just a GP that New Star GP will have you racing through though. As you do a bit of globetrotting, it’s wise to take in a few practice laps first, learning the track, utilising the braking line if you so wish. From there, Elimination events, Time Trials, Reverse tracks and the like come to the fore, helping hone that driving even more. In fact, we think that it’s pretty essential to work through those events instead of skipping by – not only will you get a lowdown for the big finale, but you’ll earn in-game cash as you go. 

You see, New Star GP isn’t just an arcade racer. There’s a simulation aspect, a bit of management of teams, car upgrades and sponsor allocation to consider. Perks are unlocked for various staff members, and keeping your team happy, corresponding through the media, is an essential part of a racer’s life. I mean, who will want to work for you if you slag them off after a race? Similar goes for the racers you are up against too – rivalries can easily spiral out of control if you let them. 

New Star GP review 2
All the sights of the fastest of motorsports

Cash earned can be ploughed back into your car, upgrading tyres, acceleration, handling, overall speed and so on. And your rivals on the grid will see their cars upgraded as seasons progress too, so this is – again – an essential part of the game. Believe me, you may think you can get away with just taking to the track without consideration of the paddock action, but you’ll fast find yourself falling down the grid if you don’t. And if you do get yourself in a really sticky situation, purchasing tech packs from other teams is possible. 

When on-track, decisions are equally important. Going fast is great, but you’ll start a race with cold tyres so will need to be considerate as they warm up. And crashing is never good either – it may be easy to get back pointing in the right direction after a spin, but you’ll need to care of your wings and suspension as you race. Pitstops also play a big role in any New Star GP race, with choices to make between soft, hard or wet tyres – and yes, variable weather conditions come in – whilst only a fool would leave those pits without enough fuel. Again though, too much petrol in the tank will see you slower than you may wish to be. Balance is a key component. 

From there, the racing itself is great. We’ve found New Star GP to be right on the money in terms of the car handling we are looking for from such a game, constantly on edge, feeling for grip, keeping off kerbs and hunting down leaders. With a limited boost system in place per lap, it’s fairly easy to go from zero to hero in no time, but things do go wrong and you’ll be just as likely to go in the opposite direction, feeling the wrath of your team and sponsors as you fail to make headway in the championships. 

For an F1 fan, New Star GP should be a delight too. I’ve been watching the sport since the early 1980’s and it’s been great to see the tracks that I love available in a more condensed arena. You’ll spot the Senna S bends at Brasilia, can pick out Maggots and Becketts at the ‘Northampton’ track, the 130R in Tokyo and those iconic streets of Cote D’Azur, aka Monaco. And you’ll be tackling these corners and more with some icons of the sport: Nigel Mawson and Michela Albarello in the 80’s, Michael Schildhauer, Jacques Verville and Damon Hibbins racing in the 1990s and so on. Yep, there’s no licensing here, but that just adds to the fun which New Star Games have brought to New Star GP. 

New Star GP review 3
Best get them wet tyres on…

For the most part, New Star GP is a brilliant arcade racer; an adrenaline boosting game that is perfect for five minutes or five hours of intense race action. But as with anything, it’s not perfect. The biggest downside is the lack of online multiplayer, but we’ve found the solo side of things to be a more than capable addiction, if only because there is so much content included. And in terms of other issues, you’re only really looking at very minor things; we feel the checkpoint banners and on-screen texts that hit as pitstops end could do with being more transparent, whilst driving through cars in the pitlane feels weird. Aside from that though, New Star GP is about as close to the perfect retro arcade racer as you are likely to find. 

If you have any interest in motorsport and are looking for a new speed fix, you’d do well to get behind the wheel of New Star GP at the earliest opportunity. Lack of online multiplayer aside, New Star GP is probably the best arcade racer currently available on the market. And it’s certainly one of the most fun of all those games that centre on F1. 

After the New Star GP Achievements and Gamerscore list?
TXH Score
Previous articleGet your first look at Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutants Unleashed
Next articleCat and Ghostly Road takes you on an atmospheric new quest
An Xbox gamer since 2002, I bought the big black box just to play Oddworld: Munch's Oddysee. I have since loved every second of the 360's life and am now just as obsessed with the Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S - mostly with the brilliant indie scene that has come to the fore. Gamertag is neil363, feel free to add me to your list.
new-star-gp-review<b>Pros:</b> <ul> <li>A near perfect arcade racer</li> <li>Lengthy career</li> <li>Additional championships</li> <li>Plays great</li> <li>Off-track management</li> </ul> <b>Cons:</b> <ul> <li>No online multiplayer</li> </ul> <b>Info:</b> <ul> <li>Massive thanks for the free copy of the game, New Star Games</li> <li>Formats - Xbox Series X|S (review), Xbox One, PS4, PS5, Switch, PC <li>Release date and price - 7 March 2024 | £TBC</li> </ul>
0 0 votes
Article Rating
Notify of

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x