Electronic Theatre In-depth Review: Le Tour de France 2013 – 100th Edition

For many, a videogame based on Le Tour de France might not be the most obvious piece of merchandise. In fact, most people would naturally assume that such a product would be little more than a cash-in: an malnourished videogame experience designed purely for a […]
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Electronic Theatre ImageFor many, a videogame based on Le Tour de France might not be the most obvious piece of merchandise. In fact, most people would naturally assume that such a product would be little more than a cash-in: an malnourished videogame experience designed purely for a three week window in which cycling grips the international sports scene. However, Le Tour de France 2013 has nearly ended, and yet Le Tour de France 2013 – 100th Edition is still with us.

To bring you up-to-speed, the Le Tour de France videogames have been launching on high-definition consoles for a number of years buoyed by their obvious connection to a majoring sporting event enjoyed by millions of fans the world over. However, while the technical knowledge of the sport will help you out considerably, it’s not essential for your Electronic Theatre Imageenjoyment of Le Tour de France 2013 – 100th Edition. A light tutorial is available by way information bulletins as you cycle, but aside from this successful riding really is a case of trial-and-error. And you will fail an awful lot, so Electronic Theatre would recommend you steer clear of the full twenty one course tournament to begin with.

The default options are the full tournament and a smaller seven course event, with a default selection chosen depending on your preferred team but customisable if you so wish. The team you choose is an important part of the experience as standings are not determined solely by your main avatar but by that of your whole team: you are able to change to any team member at any point during the race, with Electronic Theatre Imagethe idea being to keep all members pushing the pace and working together. In practice this is no easy task, and so when learning how to stretch your stamina bar it’s best to avoid anything more than a simple push for first with one racer.

The actual racing itself is a mixed bag, with some good ideas let down by poor execution. The player is able to take two pieces of food into a race with them that benefit each of the three status bars that determine your endurance and ability to sprint. Knowing which status bar you’re likely to deplete quickest will dictate which foods you choose to take into the race, but in Electronic Theatre’s experience it was always the short term stamina that needed a boost. Operating in a similar fashion is the racing line, working on the exact same principle of that of Forza Motorsport in that a line of arrows plots the best position and changes in colour to reflect Electronic Theatre Imageyour chances for staying on track at your current speed, however the gradient of the colour change is a poor visualisation of your need to brake, with the player often finding that simply easing of the accelerator a moment before hitting the bend is more suitable than even the merest tap of the brake.

The events are split into three distinct types: race, team race and time trial. The races follow the traditional format with dozens of riders on the course, while time trials is, unsurprisingly, a staged start as you compete to set the best time. Team races see your entire team race a time trial event as one long snake, aiming to ensure that the pace setter rallies the team to the point where your fifth rider sets the nest possible time. The whole of the core campaign can be played solo or split-screen with a friend – with the latter often proving to yield better finishing positions – and in addition a versus mode is available. Essentially a throwaway mode, versus offers little to hold your interest beyond an evening or two.

The visual quality of Le Tour de France 2013 – 100th Edition isn’t as bad as many will be imagining for a mid-budget release, featuring literally hundreds of miles of unique track based on the real world courses. There is no substance beyond that of the core track – even an inch off the course and you’ll grind to a halt – but the environment detail is commendable.Electronic Theatre Image The animation of your rival cyclists is also of a noteworthy quality, aside from the occasional glitch. Sadly the detail is significantly lessened when playing split-screen and the sound quality is of a notable weaker calibre.

While Le Tour de France 2013 – 100th Edition is a flawed videogame it remains enjoyable whether or not you are involved with the sport. The challenge is significant and the co-operative campaign makes even the lengthiest of races entertaining. It’s a shame there isn’t more strategy involved in the race set-up, and the in-game challenge is significant enough to endure as long as most sports simulation software. Le Tour de France 2013 – 100th Edition isn’t about to become your favourite videogame, but its well placed to become a nice wind down for a summer’s evening.

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