Metropolis Street Racer
It has been a long
time coming…no…Andy doesn’t have a girlfriend but MSR is finally
here! After waiting an extra year, we were promised a game to be even
better than what was predicted. Also, I have a shocking truth to tell, I
never liked Gran Turismo, to be honest, I never liked driving games! I
tried my hardest, but I found them boring and tedious. However, I decided
to take a look at this game, and see what all the fuss was about. So if
this game could convert me to a driving fanatic, then its proof that its
one fine game! So the question is, was I converted?
This however, is where
the genius part of the game comes in. The game is based on ‘Real
Time’, simply by entering the time it happens to be where you are and
saving it to your VMU! All in all, there are three cities that split up
into 3 sections, which then again split up into their several circuits.
Overall, there are 250 circuits! Tokyo, London and San Francisco are the
three cities you are allowed to bomb it around in, but obviously because
this is real time, it will be early morning in San Francisco when it’s
afternoon in London, so a light mist will cover the area making driving
that little bit harder! Or if you are playing at the early hours of the
morning (which you will be) London circuits will be pitch black, so you
will actually put off driving the course until the next morning until you
can see better! It’s very clever stuff.
Now more on the actual
“Kudos” system. There are all sorts of challenges for you to do. For
instance, there is a ‘one-on-one’ challenge. However, do you dare
yourself to give the other driver a head start? The more you give him the
more you may gain of “Kudos”, but only if you beat him! If you lose
expect to lose “kudos”. It’s this sort of pressure and excitement
that makes racing so frantic and exciting. Joy turns to panic when you see
a Toyota Celica frantically coming from behind you on the last corner, so
you have to decide, settle for second and not gain as many “Kudos” or
push the car into a barrier, but then you will lose ”Kudos” for style!
Either way your going to lose, but how many do you want to lose? It may
all seem complicated but when in practice it is so easy to understand, and
Bizarre creations really have changed the way you look at driving games.
what can I say about the sound to give it justice? It is awe-inspiring,
every grunt of the engine as your wheel skids and brushes the curb is
crystal clear, you can hear the revs rocketing sky high, but then you
brake and you battle to control your car as it screeches around a corner.
And that’s just the sound effects! Every city has 3 radio stations that
suit the particular culture of the country. If it’s in London, then you
get a cockney DJ (including the Tango adverts!) and with Tokyo you get its
corny music! However, if you get frustrated with that, then program your
own favorite tunes with the CD player! Brilliant! Again, I could go on
loads more about the sound but not enough time!
The Physics of the car movements are perfect. They have slightly exaggerated the power slide to give it that extra ‘arcade feel’ yet they haven’t over done it to the extent that it feels like you got wheels of ice. Thankfully, the analogue stick works perfectly with the game, which was my first worry. It is easy to pick up and play, but the actual control will vary with each car! If you compare the Mazda MX 5 and the TT Roadster you will see a very different style of driving within yourself. I suggest taking the car you want for a test drive before you try and challenge for it! If the car you choose is a flop and you trade it in, then you lose “Kudos”!
So I come to my faults of the game. To be honest, there aren’t any! Maybe the game is a bit too much for weaklings among us, as it will take an age to complete, also sometimes the Japanese DJ will get up your nose. But if I was to mark a game down for that then really there is something wrong with me. So I go back to my first question…has this game converted me to a driving game fanatic? Too bloody right it has! I crave to do more tracks in my new car! It was certainly worth the wait, and to be honest, GT3 on PS2 might look better, but if it’s gameplay, thrills and panic that you are after, then MSR on the Dreamcast is the ideal choice.
in my wildest dreams did I think I’d be giving another score out like
this, but MSR deserves it for the way it’s mixed excitement, anxiety and
fun all in one. Buy ten copies!”
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