Touge R is a racing game developed by CAVE and published by Atlus, released for Xbox in Japan in 2002. “Touge” is Japanese for a pass, referring to the narrow, winding roads that carve through the country’s mountain regions. This network of exquisitely-paved, though controversial, courses have since attracted street racers and motor enthusiasts for the dangerous challenge, as well as inspiring the long-running Touge series, which first began on Playstation and was known as “Peak Performance” in North America. Each race is a one-on-one competition, once up the mountain and then back down it, declaring victory to the lead car if it pulls ahead or the chase car if it catches up. Offering a Gran Turismo-style of play, as you buy, upgrade and custom tune each vehicle, the game’s nice visuals ultimately couldn’t make up for its weaker aspects. It received generally poor reviews across the board, criticized for stiff handling and control, and a lack of originality.
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