Gale Racer

Gale Racer
3.5
Game Name: ゲイルレーサー (Gale Racer)
Media: 1 CD-ROM
Publisher(s): SEGA
Developer(s): SEGA
Genre(s): Racing
Release Date: December 1994
Serial Number: GS-9003
Region: JP

Gale Racer ScreenshotOriginally released in arcades as Rad Mobile – Sega’s first ever 32bit game, Gale Racer is a classic arcade racing game in which the player races through several stages against the clock and several rival cars.
Unlike a lot of similar games from the time however the action in Gale Racer is locked into your car’s cockpit view and not, as was more usual during the period, from a 3rd person position behind the car.

Like all arcade games Gale Racer is short but provides the normal ‘one more go, I know I can beat my fastest time’ urge that all the best arcade racing games produce from players.

Graphically speaking Gale Racer is hampered by a very short draw distance, whilst in the night and rain stages this isn’t a problem, in day stages the short draw distance is very noticeable and can affect gameplay quite badly. Marginally forgiveable though as this was the 3rd game ever released on the Saturn.

Gale Racer ScreenshotBeyond the draw distance issues all the background and other cars used look good and the dashboard of the player’s car is very well detailed featuring a working speedometer, rear view mirror and a swinging Sonic air freshener (which marked Sonic’s first video game appearence in the original arcade version).

The sound in Gale Racer is nothing to write home about, typical cheesy arcade music, engine notes and tyre noises and that’s about it, still they suit the game perfectly.

My only real criticism of Gale Racer has to be the controls which can quite often feel a bit vague particularly when approaching a tight corner or trying to weave through heavy traffic.

One of the additions to the home console version of the game was its CG intro and end sequences which show the player’s car starting and ending the race, these are of very high quality for the time and whilst they have aged quite badly since the games release when taken in context they are very impressive.

Gale Racer Screenshot    Gale Racer Screenshot

Other additions to the Saturn release of the game are the 2 player and time trial modes which add plenty of replayability should the main game ever get boring.

Overall this is a fun arcade racing game, that whilst not up to the standards of a later title like Sega Rally is worth owning for any fan on the genre or Sega fans wishing to experience Sega’s first 32bit outing without seeking out the arcade version.

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