Well, I was on the fence as far as buying this game goes, but I'm glad I did. It's actually a very fun racing game presented in a somewhat unique fashion.
It basically looks like Google Earth/Maps/what have you, with the street view, and your racing is all top down view. This looks really cool, adds a dose of realism to the game, and is effective in presenting the game in a manner quite unlike anything I have seen previously.
I dont know how authentic the cities really are, but they look perfect in my estimation. I can see myself actually driving through those cities. It's all street racing, and there are points where the roads narrow, split, go under bridges or large trees, etc...that can make the races even more challenging than they already are.
So, what about the races and the cars themselves? The cars are cool. There are a lot of unlockable cars plus an in game dealership to buy more with money earned in races. There isnt a lot of in game detail due to the google Earth approach, but you can go to the garage via the in game options to see what they really look like, what their strengths and weaknesses are, etc...They actually handle a lot like real cars in my estimation. No loose controls or silly features. This game rewards tight, practical control of your vehicle, and everything seems pretty much just like the way real cars handle.You will need to practice to get good at this game. Sloppy play will result in a lot of replays. That said, I didnt find that it took too long to get accustomed to the controls, and once you do, you defintiely feel like you can take down every race. Just know this isnt a casual game as far as the mechanics go. You WILL need to learn how to drive your cars properly.
The races themselves take the form of all the standards....normal lap races, time trials, elimination, and so on. There is also a helicopter cam race type where instead of being the normal top down view, you instead are looking at your vehicle via the helicopters camera. It's a pretty cool type of race that I havent seen before either.
The only real downside to this game that I can see is the distinct lack of an online community. There doesnt ever seem to be anybody online, which kind of sucks since a lot of the features and cheevos are dependant on online play. I thinmk the way to go is to simply play with people you know, or possibly to start a Steam group specifically for this, and then list it on the Community Hub.
Anyway, I give the game itself 8 out of 10. It's actually really good. However, that rating could slide quite a bit if you are hoping for online play, which is virtually non-existent sadly