NA: September 5, 2006
EU: September 8, 2006
AU: September 21, 2006
JP: April 26, 2007 PlayStation 2 & Windows
EU: March 16, 2007
AU: March 16, 2007 (PS2)
NA: March 20, 2007
AU: April 13, 2007 (PC) PlayStation Portable
NA: March 21, 2007
EU: March 30, 2007
AU: April 27, 2007
KOR: June 28, 2007
Test Drive Unlimited is an open-world racing game developed by Eden Games and published by Atari. It is the ninth installment in the Test Drive series, and was released in September 2006 for Xbox 360. The PC, PlayStation 2, and PlayStation Portable versions were released in March 2007 (the latter two versions were developed by Atari Melbourne House).
Why It Rocks
Lots of licensed cars from prestige manufactures such as Ferrari, Lamborghini, Spyker, and much more.
There are also bikes you can buy from Ducatti, Kawasaki, and Triumph.
Deep and in-depth character customization system.
Miles and miles of road in Oahu to explore at your leisure.
Immersive cockpit view.
Lots of little nice touches; you can roll down the windows of your car, open the doors, start the engine, and you can even choose the wheels and the colors of the exterior and interior when buying a car.
Solid driving mechanics.
Short loading times.
Clever way of making you explore Oahu; car dealerships, real estates, and race events you haven't discovered can be driven to, and when you discover it, you can instantly transport there the next time you want to go there. This means the game gives you a reason to explore without being overly pushy about it.
A rewarding sense of progression; in order to store the cars you own, you need to purchase houses, which contain a set amount of spaces in the garage. The more money you earn from the races, the more cars you can acquire, which you can then store with bigger garages. When you look back at when you began the game and where you are now, you'll feel a sense of pride at how far you have come.
Awesome online multiplayer; the game was classified as M.O.O.R., which stands for Massively Open Online Racing. This means that when you're connected to a server, you'll see other players in the client roaming in your world. You can then challenge them to a race by flashing your headlights. If they accept, you get to set the stake and choose where the race ends. You can also create your own challenges and send them online, which will appear in the worlds of other players.
Helpful GPS and a map of Oahu you can view with a tap of the D-pad. Speaking of them it uses the real GPS system with her voice that says the same line that the real GPS in every language you play the game.
Unlike most open-world games, when you drive 15 miles in this game, it feels like you're going 15 miles.
In 2019 they made a amazing mod for PC named Test Drive Unlimited Platinum which features a bigger amount of cars that didn't appear on the original game such as most of tuner cars such as Honda NSX, Honda S2000, Mazda RX-7 or Mazda MX-5 Miata; most of classic american muscle cars such as Dodge Challenger R/T 1970, Plymouth GTX 1971 or Oldsmobile 442 and many more. Also in that mod you can convert your cars into tuning and competition variants of the same car such as the Nissan Silvia S15 can be converted to look like the Top Secret Nissan Silvia S15 D1GP; the Plymouth Superbird can be converted into NASCAR variants of Richard Petty, Sunoco and Texaco; the Volkswagen Corrado VR6 can be converted into modified variants made by APR, Extreme Dimensions and Storm and even you can convert into Fast and Furious variants for most cars used in the mentioned film such as Nissan Skyline GT-R R34, Toyota Supra RZ, Mazda RX-7 etc; and even you can convert the BMW M3 E46 into BMW M3 GTR from Need for Speed: Most Wanted (2005)!. It also it has better graphics than the original version.
The PlayStation 2 and PSP versions lack features that the PC and Xbox 360 versions have due to the limitations of both systems, this includes certain types of cars, certain buildings and avatar customization. In the other hand, they have additional licensed music including "Quick Race" mode, "Master Points" (which got featured in the sequel as "Free Ride Instant Money" or F.R.I.M.) and Auto GPS in order to compensate the shortcomings.
Some of the car specifications are incorrect like the Nissan Skyline (BNR34) GT-R, for example: It has 328 BHP in stock condition as opposed to 276, uses a Left-Hand Drive layout even though no genuine model was ever available other than Right-Hand Drive and it feels out of place since the game takes place in Hawaii, United States (and the car itself isn't legal to be imported in real-life yet due to the country's 25-year import rule).
The soundtrack, while great, feels a bit lacking compared to the PS2 and PSP versions mentioned above.
No rain and day/night cycles.
The avatar animations are outdated even by 2006 standards and voice acting are hilariously terrible. (A latter trait that echoed even louder in its sequel).
The handling model is quite odd, even by arcade-style driving standards.
The gravity system is terrible, which is comparable of that to planet Jupiter.
Some track events are exclusive to unlock using online connection and to make the things even worse, if you are playing this game on PlayStation 2, the servers are shut down on April 2016 making the game impossible to achieve 100% completion. Examples of the events are "Banana Split", "Drag Strip" etc. Also, a portion of events can be downright frustrating.