Rapid Racer

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Rapid Racer
Rapid Racer
European cover art
Developer(s) SCE London Studio
Publisher(s) Sony Computer Entertainment
Platform(s) PlayStation, PlayStation Network
Release date(s)
  • EU October 1997
  • UK November 14, 1997
  • NA June 30, 1998
  • JP August 12, 2009 (PSN)
Genre(s) Racing
Mode(s) Single player, 2-players
Distribution CD-ROM

Rapid Racer (titled Turbo Prop Racing in North America) is a racing video game released for the Sony PlayStation in 1998. In the game, the player takes control of a motorboat and races around six different courses: a Miami Beach-style track, a course running through Utah's mountains, a track set in the Arctic, a course set in Canada's mountains, a stream running through an African village, and a lava field. Eventually, all six tracks can be raced backwards, mirrored, as well as set at night time.

By winning championships and completing bonus rounds (unlocked by five yellow icons during a race But First Two Day Tracks), players can unlock Them which they can use to either upgrade their motorboat or Unlock a higher-powered one.

The game's soundtrack was composed by Apollo 440 in the UK and by Loudmouth elsewhere. The game's main theme "Carrera Rapida" by Apollo 440 was released as a single and on their 1997 album Electro Glide in Blue.

Production[edit]

Rapid Racer was significant in that it was one of the first PlayStation games to take full advantage of the DualShock controller; not only did the game allow steering with the analog sticks, but the gamepad also vibrated during a gameplay. The intensity of the vibrations also depended on what type of water the player was in; calm rapids meant low vibrations, while heavier rapids gave high vibrations.

One of the game's biggest selling points was that it ran at 60 frames per second. However, in order for the game to run at that frame rate on the original PlayStation, track detail and textures had to be sacrificed. Additionally, the frame rate lowered to 30 frames per second during 2-player splitscreen.

After reaching a certain point in the game, players could unlock a Random Number Generator. This feature allowed the player to select from a large number of tracks besides the normal six. Players could either allow the generator to randomly create a number (which corresponded to a certain track) or manually input their own. While this feature sounded like it gave a staggering amount of tracks, in reality all these randomly generated tracks were basically empty aside from water and walls and as such, many of the tracks tended to run together.

External links[edit]