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    Driver: San Francisco

    Game » consists of 18 releases. Released Sep 06, 2011

    Tanner returns in this new Driver sequel. Set in San Francisco, the game actually takes place inside his coma stricken brain. This allows him to bend the rules of the road... and reality!

    foolinjection's Driver: San Francisco (Xbox 360) review

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    Driver: Quantum Leap... or maybe Driver: Life on Mars

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    Recently I finished Driver: San Francisco's story mode. I had been itching to play through it and I wasn't disappointed, I really liked the game.

    I was a little sceptical of the game at first. This was mostly because the last Driver game I played, Driver 3 or Driv3r to give it it's proper name, was absolute spanners but also because of the "You can totally just jump into another car" dynamic that was talked about so much pre-release. Having seen some play through videos on the internet, spoken to some customers in the store I work in and actually having played it for myself I can tell you now I'm way turned around on the subject.

    You play as Tanner, a San Francisco cop, who must be doing pretty well for himself in the force as I don't know of many cops in the S.F.P.D. who roll in a tuned up, yellow 1970's Dodge Challenger R/T with black racing stripes. Not exactly the most undercover of squad cars.

    1970 Dodge Challenger R/T
    1970 Dodge Challenger R/T

    The opening scenes of the game sees Tanner wind up in a car crash and subsequently put into a coma by his criminal nemesis Jericho. This is where it gets a little weird as Tanner learns he can now have out of body experiences where he can possess other people. Just like in the TV series Quantum Leap Tanner can leap into other folks bodies and become them, unknown to everyone around him as when he looks in the mirror it's the person who's body he's hijacked staring back at him. Of course, like TV series Life on Mars, this is all happening in his head whilst the real Tanner is laying on a hospital bed out for the count.

    Once the ground rules of how you came to be able to do this “shifting” mechanic are laid down the game plays out like a lot of other driving games. Your presented with an open world, semi-realistic portrayal of San Francisco to play around in, filled with point to point checkpoint races, chasing down bad guys, evading bad guys and smashing into things. All with the added twist that your new found ability gives you.

    Bad guys giving you the slip? Shift out of your car and into the body of a driver 500 yards down the road, drive into oncoming traffic and cause a head-on collision with the baddie your trying to catch. You then simply pull up to the bumper and read him his rights. But what if the bad guys are on your tail? Shift into the body of a bus driver coming the other way and gracefully e-brake slide in behind your fleeing car, blocking the road and letting you be on your merry way whilst the baddies take a nap on a deployed air-bag.

    No Caption Provided

    Car handling has a distinctly 70's cop show vibe. A generous amount of e-brake in the turns will have you drifting like a champ around those 90 degree city street bends and snaking your way down Lombard Street, which must be that wide in this game, compared to reality, for that reason. There are a massive range of vehicles to mess about with in the game. Everything from old school Volkswagen Beetles, American muscle cars and exotics like the Zonda, as well as buses, trucks, 18 wheelers and even some old film classics like the DeLorean DMC of Back to the Future fame.

    Graphically the game looks lush. Digital San Francisco passes you by at a glorious 60 frames per second. The character models in the cut scenes are really well done and that's a good thing as the majority of the games storyline unfolds through these sections.

    The single player story mode, admittedly, isn't that long. It only took me two nights to complete the story mode and the first night I spent unlocking a few cars at the various garages and completing some of the side missions and stunts. There are a bunch of side challenges, stunts and some tokens to collect spread out across San Francisco so completing those to 100% once the whole of the Bay Area has been opened up to you would take some time and effort.

    There is also a multi-player section of the game but I haven't yet had a chance to mess about with it. Although, I would imagine that a cops and robbers style chase where all the cops are human controlled and have the ability to shift into cars ahead of you to ram you off the road, would not only be intense but really good fun.

    Like I said at the top of the post, I really enjoyed my play through of this game. I was a little put off at first upon hearing the shifting mechanic but seeing how they set it up through the storyline ties it all together well. It's really well realised and presented and I'd highly recommend this game to anyone looking for a short burst of high octane fuelled adrenaline.

    If you haven't picked up this game yet, what are you waiting for? Get out there, bust some crim's and burn up some Pirelli's!

    Other reviews for Driver: San Francisco (Xbox 360)

      A novel concept revitalises a franchise 0

      Driver is backAfter the abysmal and controversial Driver 3, Ubisoft Reflections’ high-speed Driver series took a drastic fall from the gaming limelight. Its stylish world of brutish muscle cars, Bullitt inspired car chases and emphasis on unadulterated 70s style driving went from being a jewel of the PlayStation era to a distant, forgettable, and often painful memory. Driver 3 dragged the once-popular series through the mud and grime and rendered it virtually beyond repair; transforming it into ...

      19 out of 19 found this review helpful.

      Catching Criminals With a 440 Six-Pack 0

      Driver: San Francisco is one of those games that will either become an addiction for most gamers, or it will make those gamers hate it for the innate weirdness of the setting and story. Thankfully, this weirdness is enough to draw the player in before the entertaining and slightly ridiculous gameplay take hold.Driver: San Francisco starts with the series’ main protagonist, John Tanner, being part of a vicious car wreck with his nemesis, Charles Jericho, which results in him being in a coma. Duri...

      1 out of 1 found this review helpful.

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