Super Hang-on

Title		Super Hang-on
Game Type	Driving
Company		Electric Dreams/Sega
Players		1
Compatibility 	All (I think)
Submission	Angus Manwaring Profiled Reviewer

Super Hang-on is, with Buggy Boy, one of my fondest memories of Amiga
racing games. It's an International Motorcycle racing game, viewed from a
third person perspective, just behind the figure that represents you.
The game was released around 1988, so you're not going to see any
ground breaking graphical effects, or marvel at the sophistication of the
sound. Instead you've got a straightforward, accessible, and above all,
extremely playable racing game.

I was never very successful beyond the Beginner's Course which is set over
6 stages in Africa, but I still thought, and think, that the game is
terrific. The impression of speed caused by a striped road scrolling past
you was not a new concept in 1988, but this routine is quite clever in
that the stripes are very nearly the same colour, so you don't see a tacky
striped road flashing past, but you get an almost subliminal impression of
speed which to my mind is much more effective. You can control the bike
with either mouse, keyboard or joystick, but for my money, you're probably
best off using the mouse. The mouse option has a highly effective
sensitivity adjustment feature, by the way. Which ever method you choose,
the game really scores in the handling department. You see the other
competitors ahead of you, leaning into the curves and generally drifting
from side to side, and when you get things right, you can just slide
through them without any trouble, in an extremely satisfying manner. If
you do collide with them you'll lose most of your speed, and may therefore
fail to make one of the several checkpoints where you receive extra time,
enabling you, hopefully, to make it to the following checkpoint.

Another nice feature is that when you hit 280 kph, your speed indicator
turns red, and you can then hit the nitro button, which dramatically
increases your speed. It also intorduces a "whining" sound effect, that
increases in pitch the longer you hold the nitro on, as well bringing
about a general surge in your exhilaration. You'll be laughing at the
opposition at this point, but try not to forget that as nice as it is to
keep that nitro shrieking away, you'd be well advised to keep an eye out
for that approaching corner.

That reminds me, if you come off the road, it's not necessarily a problem,
it just slows you down a bit, but often there will be trees, rocks and
other unfriendly objects that will cause you to be thrown off your bike,
causing serious loss of time. Often you'll be roaring round a corner, with
very little time left, knowing that if you keep the throttle open, you'll
drift closer and closer to the edge of the road, but if you release it,
you maybe too slow to make the checkpoint. It's exciting, and as I said
it's very satisfying when you get it right. There are several courses in
the race of varying difficulty, and you have the choice of four tunes, two
of which are pretty good. This game was a darned good effort in it's day,
and even now is a highly enjoyable racing game with the emphasis on fun.

Category list.

Alphabetical list.