The World Rally Championship has a rich history dating back to the 1970s. It’s the type of racing that calls for skill as you navigate the challenging terrain. It's no surprise that developers use it as a premise for a boatload of exciting games that get you fueled up on adrenaline. It's also why different studios have had a go at launching titles in the series.
WRC Generations and EA Sports WRC are the latest titles to grace the series. One has a promising streak, while the other is a new entrant. So, which one takes the lead? Let's find out below.
What is WRC Generations?
Developed by Kylotonn and published by Nacon, WRC Generations is the 7th installment in the WRC series. The game marks the end of an era for the developer after giving the world WRC 5, WRC 6, WRC 7, WRC 8, WRC 9, and WRC 10. As their tenure comes to a close, I must say it has been an excellent 7-year stint cumulatively. Taking over from Milestone, Kylotonn burst into the scene with an epic bang, with each game progressively getting better.
To date, WRC 8 stands as the studio’s greatest leap, and WRC Generations makes it better. Perhaps it’s the reason why the game doesn’t get a number. The game gets a handful of improvements, but it closely follows its predecessor. The game features 21 extensive rally locations. It also features all 13 events from last year’s official championship.
Furthermore, the game offers plenty of gameplay options. You can choose between single-season options, stage time trials, career mode, and individual rallies.
The brilliant yet frustrating part of the game is that there are no takebacks. If you’re stuck on the tracks, you must face the consequences as you would in a real rally. The game allows you to remove stage retries, which adjusts the difficulty. Plus, the game calls for commitment from you, where you must complete stages every day.
What is EA Sports WRC?
EA Sports WRC is the latest entry in the WRC series. The upcoming game is the ingenious creation of Codemasters and EA Sports. This is the duo's first-ever official game in the series after taking over the official license. Interestingly enough, the Codemasters team traces its roots back to the original Colin McRae Rally title of 1998. Codemasters has earned the title of the best rally game developer, especially after DiRT Games.
In 2021, EA Sports acquired Codemasters, giving the studio the financial muscle they need to actualize their ideas. And now, soon launching on Windows, PlayStation 5, and Xbox Series X/S, EA Sports WRC promises to elevate the series gameplay. If you're familiar with the Dirt Rally Games, you know what to expect with this one.
The game features 78 rally cars from ten rally groups from the World Rally Championship. Expect to find the i20 N, Puma, and the GR Yaris. Other rally cars include the Mini John Cooper Works WRC, the Ford Fiesta Rally4, and the Citroen Xsara WRC. The vehicles feature a hybrid setup where the Rally 1 Cars have a 100kW electric motor, a 1.6-liter turbocharged petrol engine, and a 3.9 kWh battery. Thanks to this, rally cars are more powerful than their predecessors.
Kylotonn has a knack for revisiting its previous games. This is evident in WRC 10, a light replication of WRC 9. Similarly, WRC Generations features stages from earlier games. It also features new stages, such as the Swedish stage, which takes the crown for the most appealing route. It’s also necessary to credit Generations’ handling, which has maintained a stable streak for the last seven years. Drifting on the gravel is immensely satisfying. The game uses the PS5 haptic triggers, which are handy during heavy braking.
Moreover, the game’s career mode is where the action truly lies. Like its predecessors, you must start your career in the WRC 3 or WRC 2 feeder series. Meaning you must be part of the club to play.
Moreover, WRC Generations features new car models based on the Toyota GR Yaris Rally1, Hyundai i20 N Rally1, and Ford Puma Rally1. The game also includes GroupRally 2 cars and legendary cars, bringing the total number of vehicles to more than thirty-seven.
In contrast, EA Sports WRC also focuses on its career mode. Expect to spend more time in career mode to propel your team to victory. But first, you must choose your class. However, you get the advantage of skipping the junior classes, unlike WRC Generations. You can begin in the top WRC Rally1 class if you want to.
What’s more, the car handling is even more fantastic. Switching terrains feels like starting a new game. With tarmac, you can be more experimental with your braking times. But take note of the obstacles on the road. Gravel terrain is where you can truly experience rally-style driving. You must balance your rear when you put the pedal to the metal.
When it boils down to the reigning champ of the tracks, it's challenging to give a proper verdict.
On one hand, WRC Generations delivers an unparalleled experience as you navigate the rugged terrain. Every location design is unique, and not two similar landscapes feel the same. Plus, the game encourages creativity with the livery editor and sharing your creations with other players. If this doesn't entice you, you can test out every car in the open test area. With no time or area restriction, you can burn as much rubber as possible.
On the other hand, EA Sports WRC is an upcoming game set to launch on November 3, 2023. The pivotal point for this game is using the Unreal engine instead of Ego technology. According to Ross Gowing, Senior Creating Director, “The game’s new engine has enabled us to push rally to the edge of what’s deemed possible, and the additional features, including Builder and Moments, give players even more ways to interact with the sport they love.” This could mean an elevated gameplay experience that transforms the entire WRC series. But until it drops, our scales tip in favor of WRC Generations.