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Games

Retro Asylum on Stunt Car Racer

The guys on the Retro Asylum podcast played Stunt Car Racer this month. That game is one of my favourites. A wild roller coaster of a game where you literally drive a car around a roller coaster.

I played the C64 version for hours on end and listening to them prompted me to set up FS-UAE again as I wanted to try out the Amiga version once more. I think I’ve only ever played that version in emulation as I didn’t have the game when I had an Amiga 500.

Anyway, FS-UAE is a great emulator based on the Winuae Amiga emulator. It uses openretro.org for database files including graphics and game information which is really helpful. It’s sort of an Amiga version of Gamebase64! Here’s a video describing how to set it up. I’ll leave it up to you to find the games and everything else but it’s not hard to find them.

Stunt Car Racer is an amazing game, and in my opinion still holds up today as a decent game. Sure, the graphics are simplistic, sound is limited but what is there is superbly polished.

The Amiga and Atari ST versions even had simultaneous multiplayer which I sadly never experienced but I’d love to know if FS-UAE could handle using some sort of virtual null modem cable to connect emulators on two machines together. It does emulate the Amiga serial port so there might be hope for the future. I found this thread about Winuae but people there didn’t have much luck.

So, what does Stunt Car Racer look like? Here’s someone who doesn’t know how to play it but he’s very entertaining and he learns as he goes..

The game is set on a roller coaster. Timing and speed are everything. You have to hit ramps at the right speed to jump gaps, and failing to line up a turn or a jump in time would result in a crash.

Here’s a much better driver, including the TNT version which I haven’t played yet but looks hard as nails!

[1] This game was created by AmiGer/CARE (http://www.discreetfx.com/care/) by modifying the original game Stunt Car Racer. The TNT of the title stands for “The New Tracks”. A track designer was written in Delphi and used to create 8 new tracks to race. The title screen and menu screen have been modified, as well as the colour palette. [2] The disk version has the track colours incorrect in the track preview window – they retain the reds from the original. The WHDLoad version fixes this problem. [3] 2-player mode via null-modem connection.

This is one of the few games I play exclusively with the keyboard. Start a race and press “p” to pause, then f1 to redefine the keys. I usually use , . t g [space] and then press o to unpause.

Stunt Car Racer appeared on multiple platforms: Amiga, Atari ST, Commodore 64, Speccy, and Amstrad machines all had versions. Here’s a video comparing them. It’s amazing what Geoff Crammond and porting teams did back then!

Earlier this year, (2019 for those coming across this post in the future), the game was ported to the BBC Master and it flies along!

That looks way smoother and faster than the C64 version!

There is a sort-of modern remake. The game Assetto Corsa features the first track!

Stunt Car Racer is an amazing racing game. Track down the Amiga version, fire up Winuae or FS-UAE and give it a whirl. You’ll love it!

Categories
Games

Trackmania: The Modern Stunt Car Racer

This is Stunt Car Racer, the first racing game I ever obsessed about. There were others that interested me, Pitstop II and Buggy Boy among them but I really loved Stunt Car Racer. So much so, that when I got a C64 emulator working on a Nokia 7650, this game was the first and only game I put on it! (And eventually wore down the joystick nipple on it from so much playing!)

I’d dabbled with other racers over the last few years, first with NFS Underground (quite enjoyed), Dirt 2 (meh, got boring), then Blur (ARGH!), and finally to NFS Hot Pursuit (barely played). Not a good track record eh? What possessed me to buy Trackmania United Forever? Well, it was 75% off but then this tweet convinced me!

https://twitter.com/#!/retroremakes/status/73470101822779392

What can I say? It is as close as you’ll get to Stunt Car Racer in a modern racing game. That’s not surprising as the developer was a fan of Stunt Car when he was all of 12 years old!

It looks great, and beyond the “time attack” racing mode it also offers other more unusual modes. I love the platform mode in particular.

As a modern game it of course does online play, and that can be a mixed bag. I’ve only played a few servers and the borders of the screen can at times be littered with a huge amount of difficult to read information. There’s a web browser of sorts too where you can check out the mods, skins and maps other players have made. They’ll cost you though. Those “online stores” really let the game down. The ones I saw were garish and ugly and very slow to load. Often most of the page would load but important action buttons didn’t. AFAIR there’s no “loading bar” to tell you something is happening either.
The game has a currency, “coppers” which I’m still learning about. Here’s a great article about them. Not sure I like how you have to bet on getting an official time on a track.


This isn’t what a normal game of Trackmania looks like. This is what happens when you render 1,000 races all at once!


Next September the next installment in the Trackmania series will be released: Trackmania 2 Canyon. The developer is also going to be branching out, Shootmania is a version for FPS players. I can’t wait to see what that brings! Joystiq has a preview of it, and the latest issue of Edge also has an extensive article on the game which I’ll be reading later.

Want a new car? Check out Trackmania Carpark. Kinda disappointed nobody created an Alfa Romeo 147. I wonder how hard that’d be?

Finally, don’t forget the Steam forum for the game. Plenty of help there if you need it.

It’s gone back to full price now, $39.99 in the US and probably the same numeric price everywhere else (grrr) but there’s plenty of fun to be had in this game. Recommended.

Categories
Games

I was a big fan of Stunt Car Racer on th…

I was a big fan of Stunt Car Racer on the C64, and later played it on the Amiga too but I never knew about Stunt Car Racer TNT.

TNT is an extra tracks mod of the Amiga version released a few years ago by AmiGer. Here’s his announcement post:

Stunt Car Racer TNT (The New Tracks) will be released around christmas.

Modifications

Eight new tracks:
DIZZY DESCENT, WITTY WAY, CRAZY CAPER, AMAZING ADEPT, JERKILY JUMP, EVILLY EPISODE, TEASING TEMPER and RAT RACE

Track parameters changed:
start positions, start height, damage sensitivity, boost count

AI speed adjusted/changed for all tracks

Some visual adjustments
e.g. race colours, track names gfx dropped, title screen modified etc.

AGA fixed

Cracked 🙂

Long time readers will know my dislike for Blur and I’ve hardly played NFS Hot Pursuit since I got it last month but Stunt Car Racer gripped me like no other racer since. It required perfectly timed boosts, cornering and was literally a rollercoaster of a ride.