March 25, 2012

[Game 018] Final Lap Twin (TG16 - 1989)

Vroom vroom.  Vroooooooommmm NeeeeeeenNEEEEEEEN SCREEEEEEEECH *KAKRASH* *tinkle tinkle*.  I know I'm suppose to do doing turn-based games only but I couldn't resist sneaking this racing RPG into the list.  They're pretty rare and I was surprised to see one this early on.  Unfortunately, this is strictly racing and the vehicles are not weaponized, as in the awesome Autoduel.  It'll be interesting to see if this game is designed as a racing RPG or if it's a racing game with the RPG element thrown in at the last minute.  The first two menu options involve just doing normal racing and the RPG option is listed last so it's probably an afterthought.

We'll just use these graphics from our
failed Christmas in Compton game.

Let's not judge too harshly on the appearance of the towns.  After all, there's also an overworld that will be explored and where I'll be randomly challenged by other drivers.

They'll even find you in the depths
of the forest somehow.

The core of the game is the racing, though, and it works very well (thankfully).  It's a bit simplistic with just accelerate and brake buttons; there are none of my beloved handbrake turns.  Turbo is in full effect, though, so it's not completely base.  The racing screen is split, oddly enough, with you able to keep on eye on your foe.  It's not necessary as the track mini-map does the job even better.  I think this is just a carry-over from initially designing the game engine with two players in mind.

Though I do like watching
the comp wipe it.

There are two types of encounters.  The random encounters are a single lap in length and the boss encounters are three laps long.  Randoms are a heads up match whilst the bosses fill up the track with about eight other cars.

Those other cars are on
your payroll, aren't they?

Failure in any race sends one back to the beginning town, crying to daddy.  The dad consoles his loser of a losing son and gives him some cash to dry those tears.

Thanks, Hulkster, I mean dad.

The stats of the game lie solely in the car and the parts that are purchased for it.  Winning races nets cash only; there is no experience system.  Special items are acquired after defeating boss drivers and are needed to complete the game.  Thankfully, the very first item is a teleporting box that takes one to any visited town.  The path through the world is very linear and having to redo the whole journey after each loss would have been infuriating.

I've acquired half of the special items needed so it's looking to be a pretty short game.  Probably a good call as the random races get pretty dull after the car is upgraded enough for consistent wins.  This also leads to the rejection of many challenges which becomes easier the more times a particular foe has been beaten.  However, there are certain challengers that I'll race every bloody time, just because of their crappy attitude.

Flip me the bird, will
ya? It's go time!