I’ve somehow managed to live for nearly 27 years without playing Out Run. How… how is this possible? For those of you that don’t know, Out Run is the 1986 racing arcade game designed by Yu Sazuki and developed by Sega AM2. It is noted for its innovative features; including a moving cabinet, beautiful graphics and musical scores, giving the player a choice of music and nonlinear driving routes. Players drive a Ferrari against a timer to meet checkpoints along the course. Like most racing game, the camera puts you into a 3rd person view behind the car. While most racing game fixate the camera above the car so the player can more easily see what’s ahead, Out Run places it much lower to simulate what a driver would really see. This makes for a more challenging game. Unlike other racing games, Out Run doesn’t pit you against computer players or have you outrun the cops. No, Out Run is about luxury and relaxation.
Sega has been releasing a few of their classic games, which have been reworked to be in 3D and have a few extra features. 3D Out Run is no exception. This version has a lot of new features that make it feel fresh, while still appealing to the older crowd that played the original. You’re able to change the view in the settings so that it seems like you’re playing in the old arcade cabinet. In addition, you can adjust the difficulty to suit the game to your playing needs. There are a few upgrades to the Ferrari that you can unlock, which make it a more stabilized vehicle too. Also added were two new songs on the radio station that definitely sound like they belong in the original game. Don’t like any of that? Turn it all off and play the game as originally intended!
While I’ve never played any version other than this, it’s important to note that others have stated that this is the best port of the game to date. Aside from getting an actual cabinet, this is the closest thing you’re going to get. It does make me want to find a working cabinet and play the hell out of this game. I’ve been playing it on easy mode, which takes out all the traffic and gives a larger time window between checkpoints. It’s definitely deluding it down to it’s simplest form, but it gives me a better understanding of the game’s mechanics without punishing me for smashing into other cars and everything else. It’s easy to understand why this is considered the epitome of racing games by so many, as I can truly say it’s unlike anything I’ve played before from the genre. Nearly 30 years after its release, there’s just something that feels so fresh about this. The scenery is gorgeous and the tunes are to deliciously 80’s. If you’ve never played this game before, or you want to rekindle your love for it, definitely pick this title up.