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Video Game / GRID

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GRID is a Racing Game series developed by Codemasters and published by Electronic Arts. It is considered the Spiritual Successor of Codemasters' earlier TOCA Race Driver series.

The series began with Race Driver: GRiD, released in May 2008. Half-arcade, half-realistic, it is most notable for one feature that would become a staple of the series - the ability to rewind time. Although this mechanic had been used in games before, this is the first time it has appeared in a pure racing game, and the ability to do a short section of the track over, which saves players the trouble of restarting entire races, made it hugely popular with critics and the public. The mechanic was later ported to Codemasters' other main series, DiRT. The other notable addition to the familiar driving game formula is that, taking cues from Need for Speed: ProStreet, the announcers (one your manager, the other the head of your pit crew) will speak to you on a First-Name Basis, as long as your name is common enough to be on the list. If not, you can choose from a variety of nicknames from "Boss" to "Goose".note  Not only this, but you can also hire a teammate after you reach a certain point in the career mode. Each teammate has different strengths and weaknesses, and they all charge different fees accordingly.


GRID 2 was released at the end of May 2013. The reviews were positive, but suffered a huge backlash from the fandom because Codemasters didn't change the game in the way they wanted (especially the less realistic handling) and the DLC pricing was highly questionable.

GRID Autosport was released at the end of June 2014, and brought back some content from the first game (eg. In-car views, San Francisco, and Ravenwest) with a grippier, more realistic handling model than 2. A port of the game for the Nintendo Switch was released on September 20, 2019.

A reboot of the franchise simply titled GRID was announced on May 21, 2019, and was released on October 11 that same year.

Another game, GRID Legends, was released on February 25, 2022 for PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X|S, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC via Steam and Origin. Codemasters's first non-licensed game since their acquisition by Electronic Arts, it builds upon GRID 2019's gameplay structure while also adding in a story mode inspired by Formula 1: Drive to Survive with full live-action cutscenes akin to the Black Box-developed era of EA's own Need for Speed games. It also adds new features like multi-class racing, new cars and tracks and a revamped career mode.



  • Adaptation Name Change: Autosport's "Autosport Speedway" was renamed "Crescent Valley Circuit" in 2019 and Legends.
  • Anti-Frustration Features: Flashbacks, which allow you to seamlessly rewind time by holding down a button and regain control by releasing it, Prince of Persia-style.
  • Artistic License – Geography:
    • The Long Beach Street Circuit does not bear a lot of aesthetic resemblance to the real course. In addition, many portions of the track are not modeled very faithfully, even in its configuration most like the real course.
    • Several real-world tracks like Spa-Francorchamps, the Circuit de la Sarthe, and Nürburgring GP are far wider in GRID than they are in real-life, this may be an Acceptable Break from Reality, allowing for more cars to fight for the same piece of real estate at once. Most of those tracks can also run in reverse.
    • The Indianapolis Motor Speedway features the North Course (the opposite layout of the actual Road Course) which was never even used in Real Life.
    • Mount Haruna in GRID obviously isn't as accurate as its real map, as oppose to the one from Initial D Arcade Stage or Battle Gear. One notorious example is the hairpin switchback being placed earlier on the track. Not to mention the entire touge course is far wider than it should be.
  • Attention Whore: This is practically the premise of the second game, to race for attention from race clubs and fans alike in order to advance the career mode.
  • Awesome, but Impractical: Taking an F1 car on the streets of San Francisco? Bad idea.
  • Berserk Button: Hitting your opponents multiple times in 2019 and Legends will trigger them to be your Nemesis. While in this state, they will drive aggressively and try to force you off the track.
  • Boring, but Practical:
    • The Saleen S7-R doesn't have as much acceleration compared to other GT1 race cars, but it contains the most grip and it's cheaper too.
    • Similar to the Saleen, your starter muscle car, a 1970 Ford Mustang Boss 302, has decent acceleration and grip but doesn't have the top speed compared to the Plymouth Cuda.
  • Car Fu: GRID 2, Autosport and 2019 featured the Demolition Derby, which is Exactly What It Says on the Tin. The first major update of Legends introduced "Classic Car-Nage", which introduces the Demolition Derby as a new, DiRT Showdown-style race mode.
  • The Computer Is a Cheating Bastard: Collisions affect the computer cars and the player cars differently and the AI cars get more grip in some places.
  • Continuity Nod:
    • One of the announcers in GRID 2019 was a veteran in GRID 2's World Series Racing.
    • Patrick Callahan's son, Patrick Jr., appears as an opponent and later hirable teammate in the same game.
    • Ryan McKane, the main protagonist of the first TOCA Race Driver surprisingly returns in GRID Legends, as the uncle of Nathan McKane, with whom he forms a Big Bad Duumviate.
  • Developer's Foresight: In Autosport:
    • If you haven't played the game in a while, the menu announcer will suggest that you do a practice cup to get back into the swing of things.
    • The amount of spectators will vary depending on what you are currently doing. There are very few people in the stands in practice and qualifying. However, on race day, the stands are filled with people.
  • Difficult, but Awesome:
    • The Lamborghini Murcielago R-GT is this for GRID 1's GT1 class. It has very fast acceleration and is beaten only by the Koenigsegg CCGT in terms of raw top speed. However, its handling is a slippery mess at low speeds, and a heavy, almost boat-like nightmare when going fast. Those who master its handling however will be rewarded with much easier GT1 class wins at Le Mans.
    • For drifters in GRID 1, the Mazda RX-7 is definitely one of these; while it is really good at holding a slide, getting into one without spinning or crashing is pretty difficult.
    • The Tier 4 Koenigsegg Agera R in GRID 2 is a pretty good example, both in online and offline play; it's insanely powerful, can hit about 250 miles per hour stock, and can drift around corners at speeds only a few of the other cars in its tier can match. It's also incredibly difficult to handle.
    • The Porsche 917/30 in GRID 2019 and Legends. It's very difficult to control the car, but with high power and with the right tuning, you can blast away at over 450 km/h.
    • Fernando Alonso's Renault R26 in 2019 and Legends is a very powerful Formula One car, wielded by the right hands who can control the insane power and traction (mainly wheel users).
  • Dream Team: No matter the category, Ravenwest features the fastest drivers every time they appear in, being almost guaranteed to dominate all team championships your team does not win. In Autosport, they can take it a step further by having you drive for them, as long as you've previously won the championship you are taking part in at least once.
  • Easy-Mode Mockery: The menu announcer will call you out for playing the game on a low difficulty and with too much assists. Hell, even she won't congratulate you in the final race for playing too easily which adds more insult to injury.
    In GRID 1: I think you won those races too easily. Up your difficulty level and up you reputation.
    In GRID Autosport: All right. You're doing too well. This isn't challenging you, and you're not earning what you could. Try upping the difficulty. You'll get better rewards and bigger offers.
  • Engrish: The commentator in Japan drift events, despite speaking mostly in Japanese, is prone to it. DORIFUTO MASUTAAAAA! However, this is normal, and sort of expected from commentators for D1GP events (the guy voicing the commentator is, in fact, one for the real-life series). It was also intentional, as that Japanese speaking announcer is American voice actor Yuri Lowenthal.
  • Fragile Speedster:
    • In the first game, the Tier 3 Lightweight cars are this; they have great acceleration, relatively easy and nimble handling, but will absolutely get mauled in a tangle with the GT or Super Touring cars.
    • Any vehicle in the open wheel class in Autosport, GRID 2019 or Legends counts as this. Even the slightest bit of contact could cause terminal damage and leave a driver out of the race, which is why contact must be avoided at all costs in this discipline.
    • Track days cars and some super cars can count as this. As these speedsters can easily diminish its performance when its crumpled on impact.
  • Genre Shift:
  • Guest Fighter: GRID 2019 features two-time Formula One Champion Fernando Alonso. Though his depiction in-game was In Name Only.
  • Heel–Face Turn: Nathan McKane. A long time driver for Ravenwest did not show up in the GRID World Series in GRID 2019. In return, he's a hireable teammate.
  • Infinity +1 Sword:
    • The Audi R10 is this in GRID 1. By far, it is the most expensive car at a whopping 20 million US dollars in-game, but it's also incredibly fast, handles almost like a dream, and is eligible for both the Le Mans 24 Hours race and the Global-level Prototype event. Funnily enough, Ravenwest does not run this car, partly to avoid overt frustration, preferring instead the next best car, the Mazda 787B (see below).
    • In GRID 2019, Nathan McKane is the best teammate available for hiring, with all of his stats maxed out. However, you have to complete the Ravenwest Showdown at the end of the Career to unlock him.
  • Infinity -1 Sword: The Mazda 787B in GRID 1 is this; it's nowhere near as expensive as the R10, is slightly slower, and it does suffer from very heavy steering at high speeds, but it's still easier (relatively speaking) to drive.
  • Instant Web Hit: In GRID 2, a video of your performance in your first race gets uploaded on the game's in-universe YouTube and gets tons of views and likes, to the point that Patrick Callahan, a rich American entrepreneur, gets interested on you. Gameplay and Story Segregation applies - how well you actually do in the race doesn't matter in the slightest. Regardless of how badly you screw up, apparently you're still considered good enough for Patrick Callahan to want to fund you.
  • Level Editor: The DS port of the first game featured one, cribbed from the TOCA Race Driver game Create & Race. Several Career Mode challenges require you to use the editor to design circuits based on specific criteria.
  • Marathon Level: Present throughout the series, given the real-life racing divisions they're based on.
    • In the first game, the 24 Hours of Le Mans, which you can race at the end of every season in career mode. It's a 12-minute (by default) race around the 8.47 mile Circuit de la Sarthe, and you only get the standard amount of flashbacks for the difficulty you're doing. You can also set up a race around the circuit through quick race of several lengths, up to 24 hours if you're feeling daring.
    • In Autosport, every race in career mode can be multiplied by 2, 3, or 5 times their default length. Most 5x races take around 20-25 minutes to complete, but the Prototype Endurance Races last a full hour.
    • Legends adds the Circuito Stradale Strada Alpina, the second longest track in the entire series, spanning 7.54 miles. A good example of this trope would be the final race of Driven to Glory taking place in that circuit, but it also doesn't stop you on how many laps you wish to set it on.
  • New Game Plus: In Autosport, depending on how well you do in a championship, trying to play it again will net you offers from stronger teams than the ones you had at first. Win it, and you get one from Ravenwest.
  • Opposing Sports Team:
    • Subverted with Ravenwest, the player's biggest rival team. While they do possess many attributes common in a generic "evil" team (insane skill, reputation as nigh unbeatable, black and red paint scheme, etc.), they don't cheat, drive especially aggressively, show any sort of hostility toward the player and/or their team at any point during the career modes, or do much of anything to suggest they're anything other than a normal racing team. They're just really, really good at what they do. They're basically the series' Harlem Globetrotters, and a Hero Antagonist team in some ways.
    • Played straight in Legends. Even ignoring the prologue, Nathan McKane's Establishing Character Moment involves being an overconfident Jerk Jock who can barely fake a smile for the fans, and his uncle Ryan tells their second driver to never overtake Nate and openly admits he buys the team's success. They're also cheating.
  • Product Placement: While GRID 1 features numerous real life sponsors, the brand that was featured the most is eBay, which has its own team and even buy their used cars.
  • Real Is Brown: The first game has a yellow/brown filter laid over everything. Legends's Rise of Ravenwest storyline adds this filter as part of a nostalgic throwback of the first game.
  • Rice Burner: The majority of the World Time Attack cars in 2019 and Legends fall under this trope. Their huge wings and comically large aerodynamic appendages, as tacky as they might look, make sense as they are combined with heavily souped-up versions of their stock engines (they can easily reach as much as 1000 bhp), allowing them to be as fast as a Formula 2 car on a single lap.
  • The Rival:
    • Ravenwest is the greatest threat to your championship aspirations in any competition in Race Driver GRiD or Autosport unless you're driving for them.
    • Nathan McKane in Legends is a classic example. Self-absorbed, aggressive and continuously faster than the player, Nathan would even make Ryo Watanabe jealous in these aspects.
  • Rubber-Band A.I.: Watch the other cars catch up with you at about 400km/h when you've finally built up a decent lead in La Sarthe in the first game.
  • Save Scumming: As there are no qualifying sessions in GRID 1, your starting position in a career mode race is always randomized. However, if you're dissatisfied with your starting position you can quit back to the main menu and retry in hopes of starting in a better one, or hell, have Ravenwest start behind you.
  • Schizophrenic Difficulty: In the first game, the 24 Hours of Le Mans' difficulty fluctuates greatly depending on your class. GT2 races are moderately difficult due to low acceleration and mediocre handling. GT1 is considerably easier due to very fast cars with good cornering, especially the Chevrolet Corvette C5.R. Later, you get to LMP2, which is basically hell as you have faster cars than in GT1, with very powerful brakes but very poor handling. The fastest is LMP1, with the Audi R10 TDI in it - it's practically impossible to lose with said car, not even in difficulty settings that disable flashbacks or restarts.
  • Skill Gate Character: The Tier 2 Touring Cars in GRID 2 are these compared to the rest of the cars; easy to drive, but slow both to accelerate and at reaching high speeds.
  • Subsystem Damage: Very much a key mechanic in the entire series, though it can be turned off in GRID 2 and Autosport.
    • In GRID 1 and Autosport onwards, the damage display near your tachometer displays a variety of subsystems - engine, suspension, gearbox, and each of the four wheels. If these components take too much damage, it's race over.
    • In GRID 2, the display was greatly simplified to an exclamation mark that represents overall damage to your car.
  • A Taste of Power:
    • The very first race of the first game puts you in a Dodge Viper SRT-10 provided by Ravenwest (as featured on the cover), who have kindly lent you this car for your licensing race at San Francisco. This also applies to some of the driver invites, which put you in cars from race classes that you otherwise may not be able to enter with your current reputation level (eg. Being invited to drive a Lamborghini Murcielago R-GT in a GT1-class event while the actual GT1-class events are still locked, while you're still raising funds to restore your starter car).
    • GRID Autosport kicks it up a notch. The game puts you right into the 25th season opener at Hockenheim in a race-prepped Audi RS5. Somewhat downplayed, though, as you can drive that same RS5 as soon as the second season, though not one provided by Ravenwest.
    • When you start up GRID 2019, the opening sequence puts you in numerous powerful cars. The first race puts you in the Corvette C7.R at the streets of Shanghai, the second race has you in the monstrous Jupiter San Marino stock car through the Indianapolis Speedway and finally you tackle the wet roads of Brands Hatch in a Volkswagen Golf TCR in the final race.
    • Legends's Driven to Glory has you have a taste of the powerful Beltra Enduro Prototype around the Strada Alpina.
  • Understatement: Your engineer will say that your car has "only a few scratches" even with the front end completely smashed if the "core" components (wheels, engine, suspension) are untouched.
    "Your car is a little banged up but it's nothing serious."
  • Unnecessary Roughness:
    • In Autosport:
      • The Touring and Street categories turn racing into a contact sport, with opponents beating and banging for position. And there are no caution flags, even if a Mercedes S-Class is sitting upside down in a gravel trap with most of its body panels missing.
      • Online racing. Tracks and race classes are picked by majority vote, which almost always results in a combination of heavy closed wheel vehicles and narrow city courses, preferably the ones with a tight first corner for maximum carnage potential.
    • This is one of the complaints leveled against Nathan McKane and Ravenwest at large in Legends, with McKane triggering a multi-car pileup at the beginning of the campaign just because he won't let himself be passed.
  • Version-Exclusive Content: The Prestige Pack DLC for the first GRID title is exclusive to the PS3 and Macintosh, and the Switch version of Autosport the game (the latter having it already present within the game itself), though the PC version can obtain that DLC via converting the Mac version's files to work on PC. Some of the cars from said DLC pack are also selectable in the arcade version as well.
  • Video Game Cruelty Potential: You can drive as aggressive as you want (even against your teammate) and suffer no penalties as a result (unless you're in Pro Touge). This (or at least cutting corners) is practically necessary in the 24 Hours of Le Mans outside of LMP1 because the opposing cars catch up really quickly around the five chicanes. In 2019 and Legends, however, doing so will provoke your opponent as a "Nemesis", meaning they will drive just as aggressively and will attempt to hunt you down for your actions.
  • World Tour: The GRID series takes you on races held on street cities and racing circuits from different countries all over the world.

"Your event rival will be replaying that over and over. Great win."