Virtua Racer (videogame)  » Games  »
4.0
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  • I found that even the easy circuit took a little while to get to grips with, although after a few laps it was relatively easy to keep the car going in the right direction
  • There are also backmarkers to lap, which adds an extra dimension of forward planning as you try to avoid coming up to one at a slow corner and so losing time

    • by fredhound
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      Virtua Racing is a racing game that, when it first appeared in the arcades in 1992, was seen as quite revolutionary. It was one of the very earliest games to use polygonal 3D graphics, and when this was combined with the immersive sit-in cabinet that appeared a little later (on the “Deluxe” variant) it was just about the closest thing to the sensation of being there that you could get at the time. Virtua Racing was later released for a number of home consoles, and one of these conversions can still be very well worth playing even today.

      You could also say that the game’s initials, VR, could stand for “Virtual Reality”, and I am sure that this was a deliberate choice by Sega. This is justified both by the 3D effect and by


      the possibility for the player to select one of several driving views, ranging from a full in-cockpit effect to a simpler view from behind the car. These can be controlled during the game by means of dedicated buttons, and although such a feature is now absolutely standard for games of this type, back in the middle of the 1990s it was seen as quite an exciting development.

      There are, at least in the original arcade version, three tracks to choose from: the easiest is “Big Forest” while the “Acropolis” circuit is the most difficult, with “Bay Bridge” somewhere in the middle. I found that even the easy circuit took a little while to get to grips with, although after a few laps it was relatively easy to keep the car going in the right ...


      • direction. This is quite important, since in true arcade game style Virtua Racer imposes a time limit, and in my view this limit is quite a tight one. To finish a full five lap race really does require a lot of concentration.

        The car you drive is based on a Formula 1 Grand Prix car, and the very bright colours used in the game are quite reminiscent of the garish colour schemes often seen in real life F1 racing. Around the edges of the screen is displayed important information such as your speed, your recent lap times and most crucially of all, the time you have remaining before you are required to reach the next check point. If you fail to do this, the car slows down quickly and the game is over. A

        nice extra touch is the inclusion of animated scenery, for example a funfair in the “Big Forest” level.

        There are 16 cars in the race (including your own) and those at the back are generally very slow and simple to overtake. However, as you make your way up the pack, you will find that your faster rivals are more skilful drivers and so will make it harder for you to get by, although they do not actually try to block or ram you. There are also backmarkers to lap, which adds an extra dimension of forward planning as you try to avoid coming up to one at a slow corner and so losing time. All in all, Virtua Racer is still a fun and surprisingly challenging blast for the driving game enthusiasts among us.




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    The review was published as it's written by reviewer in February, 2011. The reviewer certified that no compensation was received from the reviewed item producer, trademark owner or any other institution, related with the item reviewed. The site is not responsible for the mistakes made. 284021412270128/k2311a024/2.4.11
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