Turbo Outrun

Title		Turbo Outrun
Game Type       Driving
Company		US Gold/Sega
Year            1989
Original Price  19.99
Programmer      ICE
Players		1
Compatibility	Not AGA (WHDLoad HD fix patch available)
HD Installable  With Patch
Submission	Carlo Pirri 

Turbo Outrun is the second game in the ever-popular series of arcade race
games that took game players by storm in the late 1980s. At the time
petrol-heads the world over who felt the need for speed could drool no
further than the Ferrari F-40 and the Porsche 959. Unfortunately few could
afford the exorbitant price tags of these magnificent beasts, so Turbo
Outrun was the next best thing for many. In Turbo you cruise around with
your voluptuous blonde girlfriend in a Testarossa Ferrari F-40. One day
some dude in a Porsche 959 pulls up next to you and starts mouthing-off
that his car is better than yours. Naturally you feel that your manhood is
being threatened (especially in front of the missus and all!!!), so you
challenge the jerk to a canonball-run type race across America from New
York to Los Angeles.

Turbo comprises 16 stages of racing across 16 U.S. cities. Along the way
you encounter different weather conditions (sun, rain, snow etc.) and road
obstacles (barrels, barricades, grease etc.). All the while cops try to
run you off the road and Sunday drivers inevitably block your path. To
advance stages you must beat the clock. To help you do this you can flick
a switch to activate a special turbo boost that sends you into warp speed
with flames coming out of your rear-exhaust. The only problem is that it
makes your temperature gauge see red if you use it too much and renders it
inactive until your car has cooled down sufficiently. At every 4th stage
you receive a time bonus and also get to upgrade your car.  You get a
choice of high grip tyres, a more powerful engine and a super-turbo
booster. Choices need to be made carefully because they can have some
bearing on how well you perform on later stages (well at least the manual
says so!). If you bomb out on any particular stage then you can take
advantage of the generous 5 continue-plays. Use all them up and it's game
over man, upon which you are shown how far you progressed in the game via
a roadmap.

Turbo is not a bad game, but it just seems to be lacking in certain areas
to make it a real winner. The graphics are pleasant enough and the car
handles well. Unfortunately the 3D scrolling is a bit jerky and reduces
the sense of speed and exhiliration that otherwise might have been
experienced. The sound again is okay, but lacks the brilliant sampled
speech soundtrack by the Maniacs of Noise in the C64 version. The
soundtrack we do get on the titlescreen is a little muffled and really
makes poor use of the Amiga's comparatively superior sound capabilities. I
smell something fishy here. Do you? Amiga Turbo reeks of an Atari-ST port.
Shame on the programmers, ICE, for being lazy coders and not optimising
the Atari code for Amiga. If they had, this game could have been so much
better. As it stands Amiga Turbo is an average game that provides limited
entertainment, perhaps made more worthwhile by the ability to play it off
HD with Bored Seal's brilliant WHDLoad game patch.

My Ratings January 2000

Presentation             64%
Detailed manual providing rudimentary information about what to expect during
each stage. Sparse options including choice of joystick or mouse control and
manual or automatic gear change. Lacking sound and two player options.

Graphics                 62%
Essentially they do the job, but jerky 3D scrolling detracts from the "fly-by-
the-seat-of-your-pants" experience one usually hopes for from this sort of game.

Sound                    53%
Major letdown considering what was achieved in the C64 version. Music is too
cheerful and muffled in parts for my liking. OK sound FX.

Hookability              80%
Easy to get into purely because the car is responsive and the difficulty factor
of the game is healthy.

Lastability              58%
Not sure that there's too much compelling people to come back to this game once
they've beaten it. Some may get bored before they even reach that point because
of the sheer average nature of the game.

Overall                  64%
Some fun to be had here but Turbo could have been so much better if not for lazy
programming. This game gets an 'A'......'A' for AVERAGE and 'A' for ATARI ST

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