Sunday, August 21, 2011

Sega Race TV Review

Well, during my awesome trip to the super Orlando McDonald's, I stumbled upon a Sega Race TV cabinet.  I have never played this game before until now.  It came out in 2008 making it one of the most recent Sega racers, along with R-Tuned.

This would  be the only game I played at McDonald's.  I told my dad, "quick, gimme some money."  This game cost $1 to play.  I would only play the game once.

This is the game trailer.

This is how it works.  You pick one of eight licensed cars, one of eight drivers (which dictate your car color) auto/manual, and one of five tracks.  Pick one track and come in 3rd or better to move onto a second race (randomly selected course).  Then come in 2nd or better in that race to move onto a final race (another random course).  So each race is approximately 2-3 minutes therefore if you win every race, you play for about 8/9 minutes.  And yes, I came in 1st every race, I'm awesome like that.

Here's gameplay footage (not me, I didn't take any pics while playing).

The gameplay here is just weird.  It feels kind of like Fast and the Furious but with some Mario Kart aspects thrown in.  There are chevron speed boosts , ramps, and red strips to drive on to increase your boost meter (think F-Zero).  I picked the blue Corvette Stingray which was a very fast, drift-happy car (I was unaware of its crap handling at the time).  Therefore, you had to be very gentle with the wheel cause the car would just sling itself all around the track when you turn the wheel more than 10-degrees from center.

I also mention that the game's five tracks (which feel a bit artificial to me) are very wide & straightforward so you never really need to drift.  I do swerve around the course trying to find boosts (the game will point out any AI cars or boosts with arrows).  Maybe drifting gives you nitrous boosts (press the red button next to the Up-Down shifter) but I was trying not to do anything stupid.  Your boost meter goes up automatically all the time regardless.  Seriously, I must have used at least twenty boosts per race (you get one boost every 5 seconds on the last lap, just like the Golden Mushroom from Mario Kart) which was enough to slingshot me past the AI despite my occasional mistakes.

Some more things.  The sense of speed when you're not boosting is rather weak (about 130 mph).  Like you didn't feel the "rumble" of the car as in Daytona or OutRun.  Even with the boosts the car never tops 160 mph which is nowhere near OutRun/Daytona speeds.  Heck, ramming into other cars while using the boost causes them to go airborne.  The cars demonstrate some modest damage models but mostly stuff you'd see in a Forza/Need for Speed game.  The announcer's cheesy commentary is only surpassed by the Sonic & Sega All-Stars Racing announcer.  Also, that fat guy with the USA colors was a bit creepy and out of place for me.  Like leave it up to the Japanese to portray "Amerikuh" as a fat spandex-wearing biker with a loud mouth who's also a terrible dancer.

Fat boy ruined the game for me.  Thankfully, this footage was edited through a coffee can so you don't have to see him in his full glory...

When you win all three races, your car gets a new paint job and presumably some performance upgrades too.  Just come back and enter the password you see above.  Just like in Fast & Furious!

My opinion...for a Yu Suzuki game, this one felt quite underwhelming.  You can really tell they were going for that FnF/Mario Kart hybrid and the super simple driving mechanics didn't stick with me.  Just makes me wish I was playing Daytona/OutRun.  Graphics are still pretty good and if I were to play it a few more times, I'd probably gain a greater appreciation of the gameplay mechanics.  EDIT: It's also nice to see a unique IP out of Sega too.  EDIT AGAIN: Overall, the game quality isn't terrible--it's pretty slick, but I feel that the design choices were somewhat questionable.  Not like I'm going to see this game again for a long time.  Just play the game for yourself and see what it's like.  Opinions are welcome, feel free to disagree...

Score: 6.5 out of 10 (would be higher if not for the biker guy)


  1. yeah, SegaRaceTV is a real let-down

  2. its a HUGE let down! when i posted my impressions on gamefaqs, it was a weird Crazy Taxi/Burnout clone, and Outrun 2006 blows it out of the water! I saw SegaRaceTV debut in TokyoArcadeShow2007, big letdown.

    Have you run supermodel on your school laptop yet? it'll be sweet!

  3. Ok, was just wondering cause that comment was short. Since you commented on it a long time ago, I can't remember exactly what you said. Nice that you got to play it though. Will talk about Supermodel later.

  4. I already play it!
    it was awesome games!
    do you have a password for great car? O.o