OutRun 2006: Coast 2 Coast
Review by techie.pinoy
"Outrun2006: Coast2Coast PSP Review"
Outrun2006: Coast2Coast PSP Review
*Pros*: Tons of gameplay modes, perfect controls, long draw distance, detailed environments and unlockable cars, huge number of unlockables, nice BGM, short load times
*Cons*: Onscreen text can get in the way, some slowdowns here and there, other on-screen cars look bland (maybe Ferrari's idea hmmm LOL). You have to get both PS2 and PSP versions of the game to unlock everything!
What can I say... I'm an old softy. I love reliving my old days at the arcades, when I would save up my allowance each day so I have enough tokens for a couple of games after school. Now while I wouldn't say the original Outrun is my favourite arcade (that honor is reserved to the venerable side scroller Cadash!), it is still definitely one that I played a whole lot.
Now what makes OR2006:C2C for PSP so special? In this age where success in racing games are now more defined tuning car parts and mastering race lines, OR chose to go a different path. Instead of choosing to evolve to some modern day racer, it chose to stay true to what it is and that is pure driving bliss. It harkens to the age when cars are defined by only three stats: maximum speed, handling, and acceleration. There's no multitudes of sliders here that affect every aspect of the car. Success in OR is defined by knowledge of your car and knowledge of the track!
All of this comes in a nice clean package. The Ferraris look nice (though not exactly modelled like their real-life counterparts). You'd be amazed that the little machine is capable of such. All other vehicles on the road isn't quite as detailed though. The environments are very pretty to look at and the draw distance, I believe is unparalleled by any other racing game in the system. No one would attribute losing to not seeing the cars ahead of him anymore. The simple additions like the flicker of flame bursting from the exhausts when you change gears and the smoke, grass, or dust trails (depending on the surface you are passing through) are nice.
The BGM is lifted from previous versions of Outrun and fit the bill quite nicely. The original 8-bit tunes would definitely bring back memories (I know it did for me), while the newer ones (the ones with lyrics) will keep you humming tunes for a while.
Gameplay is where this game shines though. Your initial game (if you are new to Outrun) will find you slamming walls and flipping in every direction. Once you get the hang of drifting, you will feel the deep sense of accomplishment since you will be winning races left and right. Later on, you will find that drifting is not the only key. Learing to follow strict race lines and knowing when and when not to drift becomes important and passing this next roadblock will give you the feeling that you are actually learning and improving. So while your onscreen persona improves in games like Daxter and Untold Legends, in Outrun, you find that your skill improves and the feeling of actually getting best times will definitely keep you going.
Single player experience is quite nice. Here you have four flagman sets and three girlfriend sets. The flagman sets are composed of basic races where you need to get to the finish line first, and objective based races like get the highest drift or slipstream scores, or avoid being last at checkpoints, etc. As always, these sets get progressively difficult but not too difficult too soon that it gets frustrating or too late that it gets boring.
The girlfriend sets are somewhat like a puzzle game where you follow different requests made by your girlfriend which maybe as simple as passing cars or trucks, or as weird as avoiding meteors or alien abductions (don't ask). Note that though these are puzzles, they force you to learn race lines which helps in other modes as well. These are fun though it gets frustrating at times.
Aside from single player there are 3 gameplay modes, Outrun, Time Attack, and Heart Attack. Outrun mode is the classic outrun game where you start racing a series of tracks choosing either left (easy track) and right (harder track) after finishing a leg of the race. Heart Attack mode is exactly like the girlfriend sets in single player. Time Attack Mode is pure racing where you don't have to contend with other vehicles on the road. You just have to worry about getting the best time. When all is said and done, you may end up just going through this mode over and over again.
When you find that you can no longer improve (let's face it, enemy AI is not that good), there's still online play. So while you have your local best times, there is most probably someone somewhere that has gotten better times than you and this gives you more reason to push forward. This definitely is one of the longest games in the system.
There is also a bunch of unlockables in the game like 10 other ferraris, tuned versions of the same ferraris, tunes from previous Outrun games to be used as BGMs, tracks and modes (like the 15 consecutive track races which are fun), car colorsand whatnot. Unlike other games where you need to be good to get everything, here all you need is patience. See, every race you go through using any of the available modes, racks you a certain amount of miles. These are not physical miles mind you but more of score based miles. The better you do, the more miles you get basically. Even the worst races you go through will net you at least some miles. These miles are then used to unlock these items. Note though that to unlock absolutely everything, you need a PS2 version of the game which in my opinion sucks and no game developer or publisher should resort to this kind of cross marketting. This would have been bearable if the two games were sufficiently different but alas, they are exactly the same so getting both doesn't really make sense.
All in all, Outrun is a great purchase. This is a game that will appeal to racers and casual gamers alike. If you have a PSP, this would make a nice addition to your collection.
- Summary -------------------
Graphics: 8.0 / 10
Sound: 8.0 / 10
Gameplay: 9.0 / 10
Longevity: 10.0 / 10
(Tilt: 9.0 / 10)
Overall: 8.8 / 10
(Overall with Tilt: 8.8 / 10)
Reviewer's Score: 9/10 | Originally Posted: 05/21/06
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