Review by Jerom88

Reviewed: 08/26/08 | Updated: 10/25/19

Best classified as an improved Lotus Turbo Challenge.

It being the year 2008, it might seem a little futile to review a game that was released 16 years ago. Then why am I doing it? First of all I can’t stand it when games haven’t been reviewed. You never know if people ever want to check up on a game, and when they do a review should be available. Second, I need an outlet for my creative energy. The game’s Top Gear 2, released in 1992 on Genesis.

My first impression is that the game is incredibly similar to Lotus Turbo Challenge (also for Genesis). All animations and sprites, which basically boil down to the cars and the tracks (that’s all there’s to it), remind me a great deal of Lotus Turbo Challenge. You’d nearly say Gremlin Interactive developed both games, huh. But let me explain what Top Gear 2 is about.

As you’ve probably figured out by now, Top Gear 2 is a racing game. On the start-up screen you can choose between one or two player mode, and then you’ll be taken to a screen on which you can buy new parts for your car. You start out with $10.000, so you can immediately upgrade your car a bit. As you win races (or finish place 2-6) you’ll earn a certain amount of cash which you can use to buy better parts (which make your car faster, sturdier, etc). Countless tournaments, each containing four races, follow each other in sequence. Upon finishing a tournament you receive a password, so you can always return to the start of the desired tournament.

The racing itself is challenging and fun. Each and every one of 19 opponents seems to want you to hit them. They swirl across the road into your path, causing you to bump into their rear and slow you down considerably. Hitting obstacles like other racers, rocks, logs, road signs and thrash cans not only slows you down but also does damage to your car. The more damage your car takes, the slower it becomes. Nitro helps, though. Luckily your car receives a free fix after each race. As said before, winning earns you cash and upgrading your car is a must, as races and tournaments become progressively harder. A new and better engine can be a massive advantage. Quick left-right turn sequences test your reflexes and night- and snow races pose a new challenge.

Of course, we must not forget this is a Genesis game. By the standards of 2008, the game’s not very diverse and rather ugly-looking. Nevertheless it’s still a lot of fun to play, especially when you plug in a second controller. Competing in tournaments together a la Mario Kart 64 is still an awesome thing to do.

Neither the music (simple, but good!) nor the simple (but colourful!) graphics make the game any less worth playing. Their simplicity actually adds to the nostalgic atmosphere the game emanates. Even though Top Gear 2 is a 1992 Genesis game, it’s more fun to play than most of the new releases nowadays.

~ Written 08/26/08
~ Last edited 10/08/08

Rating: 8

Product Release: Top Gear 2 (US, 12/31/94)

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