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Tuesday, September 16, 2014

California Speed

John Marine | 6:16 PM | |
California. The Golden State. One game is all about burning rubber all over the state of California. That game is called California Speed, and it was released by Midway in 1998. Race a part of California (or do the state), pick a car, and go. From San Diego to Los Angeles, San Francisco to the Silicon Valley, and various points in-between... California Speed is more reason for Californians to brag about their state. But how is it at a game? That is the subject of my game review here.

--- California Speed ---

California Speed
^ from: - Ever wanted to race all over California? California Speed gives you that opportunity!

California Speed is a game made for the arcade as well as with a Nintendo 64 version. I've played (and almost beaten) the Nintendo 64 version. This is just a game that's all about going full speed in a number of vehicles across a number of different California locales. All of the cars are fictional, but you can sort of make out what each one basically resembles. Everything from sports cars to golf carts can be raced in this game across the many different venues. The graphical details are all enhanced by 3DFX 3D acceleration for that extra visual polish.

The cars are all fictional. Most of the action takes place on roads and highways. To make things more interesting, you take on some of these tracks in interesting settings, such as being on the deck of a Naval carrier in San Diego, a roller coaster in Santa Cruz, and even through a mall in Central Valley. Try doing all the individual stages. Or if you REALLY want to prove yourself, Do the State! This is where you race every course in the game in a tour of California.

Each race features ten cars to a track, including yours. Pass through the checkpoints to extend your run. The arcade version lets you have the next race free of charge if you win the current race. What is different about California Speed than, say... the Cruis'n series, is that there are closed circuits in addition to the open road circuits. The closed circuits are all three-lap long races.

Enjoy your romping around California already!

Final Thoughts.

Needless to say, California Speed is a very boring racing game, which is a shame considering games like the Cruis'n series and the RUSH games. The environments and settings have character and are unique. So it isn't like you are racing in locations that are boring and lifeless. However, the racing is very mundane. On the other hand, California Speed is more of a proper 3D-style game in graphics than the first two Cruis'n games. There is an actual sense of perspective when you view the various tracks and cars. Sounds are very poor, and the music is so-so. I've rented (and almost beaten) the Nintendo 64 version of this game. It is still worth playing at an arcade store or where there are arcades, but it is very boring. Want to know why this game didn't get as much hype? Good reason- it is just not good.

Video Preview.

Let me show you what California Speed is like. View this video here, or click to open in YouTube if you can't view embedded media. Thanks to the creator of this video for allowing it to be embedded (NOTE: This video is an emulation of the arcade version of California Speed):

^ "California Speed - Do the State: Playthrough Part 1 "

That concludes this post. If you have a Nintendo 64 and want to get this game, click on this item below to buy on Amazon:

Have yourself a great day/night!

If you've played this game before...

What do you think about California Speed?

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