On Saturday July the Eighth 1995, I got out of bed unfeasibly early, to go to the Plymouth 'Game' shop, and buy my Saturn and a copy of Daytona. Pack-in game Virtua Fighter was left feeling very sorry for itself, as I played Daytona for much longer than is healthy for the average human.
I'm sorry to sadden all the critics, but I liked the graphics. Sure, if you drive around the tracks at 5mph you will notice the big chunks of rock appearing out of nowhere, but hey, if you're that anally retentive I suggest you get another hobby. We all know that racing games are really all about speed, control, crashing, and.......more speed!
This is where the AM2 boys have produced the goods. There's no escaping the fact that if you want to post fast times, you must learn how to flip your car into an awesome slide, and how to use every inch of the track with true 'racing line' perfection. And you need thumbs-of-steel to master balancing the throttle/brake to get that smooooooth slide.
So you either love or hate the graphics, but how do we even start on the music?
Unique? Inspirational? Up-lifting? Or just completely shite?
Well in this mans totally worthless opinion, the music is the best ever to grace a videogame. It's just so totally unbelievable to be engaged in a sweaty, tense, thumb-mincing action racing game, when from out of nowhere you hear "Blue, blue skies....Blue, blue skies I see", or what about the seminal classic "Aaaaaaah-a-a-aaaaaah......aaah-aaah-aaaaaaaaah-a-a-aaah".
Easy-listening before it was cool.
I must admit it did appear, well, a little unfinished in places, with the presentation screens looking very ropey, and the extra cars seemed to have been cobbled together just for the hell of it. Maybe because Ridge Racer had lots of extra motors, they thought they'd better slap a few extra cars together to keep people happy. Still, whatever the reason, the 'Pink car' must be the best to drive as it seemed to like driving on the grass, making those outrageous slides more fun.
As for the horses, one games mag talking of their performance, said totally straight: "They don't slide on the grass". Can't argue with that boys.
So there you go. The vote for 'Best Saturn experience so far' goes to: powersliding the pink car around the AM2 hairpin, while some madman croons about the sky.