Tag Archives: driving games

Atari A to Z Flashback: Monte Carlo

Say the words “racing game” to someone these days and they’ll typically think of a game with at least a passing impression of a 3D perspective.

Prior to titles like Namco’s Pole Position and Sega’s Out Run popularising this viewpoint, however, Atari was happily churning out top-down racers that were a lot of fun to play, beginning with Super Bug before moving on to the unusual cooperative two-player title Fire Truck — which we’ve previously seen on this series — and finally, the full-colour, multi-track Monte Carlo, which saw players racing against actual opponents as well as the course itself.

Like Atari’s other early racers, it’s a game that’s actually still a lot of fun to play today once you get used to how the control scheme maps to modern controllers — and, for me, one of the many highlights in the Atari Flashback Classics collection.

Find a full archive of all the Atari A to Z videos on the official site.

Atari ST A to Z: Days of Thunder

In the 8- and 16-bit home computer era, movie license games were typically developed either as platform games with a tenuous link to the movie in question, or some sort of minigame compilation, with each major scene from the movie being represented as some sort of interactive challenge.

Mindscape’s Days of Thunder was different. Here was a game that took the basic concept of the movie and simply used it as a basis to create a fully fleshed out experience — one that complemented rather than attempted to imitate the original work. The subject matter — motorsport — was ideal for such a treatment, and, on paper, Days of Thunder was a great idea.

Sadly, less than stellar performance meant that the game wasn’t as good as it could have been — a lack of speed and responsiveness in a racing game is a bit of an issue! — but it remains an interesting proof of concept as well as an intriguing anomaly that broke with the conventions and norms of the time. So I salute the effort involved, if not necessarily the final product we ended up with!

Find a full archive of all the Atari A to Z videos on the official site.

Sunday Driving: Out With a Bang (Finale)

This is it! This is what it’s all been building up towards: the season finale of Split/Second!

Despite some occasionally questionable performance, I’ve managed to make it to the final episode on the top spot of the Championship table… question is, can I finish the season and maintain my winning position?

Hit the jump to find out how it all ends…

Continue reading Sunday Driving: Out With a Bang (Finale)

Sunday Driving: Boneyard Rush

We’re closing in on the end of Split/Second now; only a few more episodes to go!

Today’s episode, Boneyard Rush, takes us out of the city and into a few areas rather devoid of life… the desert, the canyon, the industrial zone. Bring on the Bridge of Death!

Hit the jump to see how things went today… and to admire a stupid gag that took me probably more time and effort than it really deserved.

Continue reading Sunday Driving: Boneyard Rush

Sunday Driving: Scorching Rubber

Well over the halfway point through Split/Second now, and we’re starting to unlock some of the top-notch cars.

There are still some significant challenges ahead of us, but today’s installment goes strangely smoothly… perhaps it’s down to the amount of gas I fill myself with before getting underway properly.

Whatever the reason, hit the jump to see how things went… and beware of the flatulence.

Continue reading Sunday Driving: Scorching Rubber

Atari A to Z: Baja Buggies

You know me, I love an arcade racer. And while the Atari 8-bit era was very much a time where this genre was just starting to define itself, there were still some fun, interesting games to enjoy.

Baja Buggies from Gamestar is a game from the early days of the system that I didn’t play that often back in the day, primarily because it was on cassette, and who has time to sit around waiting for those things when you have a US Doubler-equipped 1050 disk drive for high-speed floppy loading goodness? (Said drive died recently, please raise a glass in memoriam. Thank you.)

Anyway. It’s an interesting racer that eschews the Pole Position timers-and-checkpoints formula in favour of an endurance race format: pass 80 opponents before you wreck your buggy or cross the finish line. The desert awaits!

Find a full archive of all the Atari A to Z videos on the official site.

Sunday Driving: Threshold Break

Well, after a disastrous morning of my computer pretending to be dead… I finally managed to get an episode of Sunday Driving recorded!

Our Split/Second adventures continue as we progress through the game’s “Season” mode, the challenges growing ever more severe as we reach each new episode.

Hit the jump to see how today’s automotive mayhem went…

Continue reading Sunday Driving: Threshold Break