Ridge Racer (2004 video game)

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This article is about the first Ridge Racer title for the PlayStation Portable. For the 1994 video game, see Ridge Racer (video game). For the game released for the PlayStation Vita, see Ridge Racer (2011 video game).
Ridge Racer
Ridge Racer (PSP) Coverart.png
Developer(s) Namco
Publisher(s) Namco
Designer(s) Isao Nakamura
Series Ridge Racer
Platform(s) PlayStation Portable
  • JP: 12 December 2004
  • NA: 24 March 2005
  • EU: 1 September 2005
Genre(s) Racing
Mode(s) Single-player, multiplayer

Ridge Racer, released in Japan as Ridge Racers (リッジレーサーズ?), is an arcade racing video game developed by Namco for the PlayStation Portable. It is named after the eponymous Ridge Racer video game series to which it belongs. The game was released in Japan on 12 December 2004, in North America on 24 March 2005 and in Europe on 1 September 2005 as a launch title. Available in the game is a fully playable version of the Namco arcade game New Rally-X.

Ridge Racer has been described as a 'compilation' of the series, featuring tracks, cars and remixed soundtrack from previous titles in the 1990s.[1] Ridge Racer was very well received by critics and was praised for its visuals, gameplay and soundtrack. It was re-released in 2005/2006 as a platinum title. A sequel titled Ridge Racer 2 has also been released for the PSP.


The core aspect of the entire Ridge Racer series is drift racing, that is traditional lap racing against opponents with the added twist of intentionally oversteering and sliding the car through sharp corners and turns, known as "drifting", which earns the player several bonuses during a race.

Game modes are World Tour, Single race, Time Trial, and Wireless Battle, which supports up to 8 player multiplayer over the PSP's ad hoc, Wi-Fi network capability (see PSP Wireless Networking for further information).

The game also features a Full Motion Video opening, that shows series mascot Reiko Nagase.


Notable in the game is the "nitrous boost" system. The player has a Nitrous Gauge made up of three nitrous tanks, which at the start of a race are either completely depleted or only partially full. As the player drifts through the corners (especially at very high Slip angles) during the race, their nitrous gauge fills up. When the player fills up one of the three nitrous tanks, it can be activated to achieve a temporary speed boost. The nitrous tanks cannot be recharged while any tank is in use though, but the residual speed increase when the nitrous boost expires can be used just before entering corners to recharge the player's nitrous tanks at a faster rate than normal. (Ultimate Charge)


The game features a total of 24 courses (12 unique courses and the same 12 courses reversed) most taken from previous PlayStation games or the arcade-only title Rave Racer.

Ridge Racer[edit]

The first two courses in the game are taken from the original Ridge Racer, although they also appeared in Ridge Racer V. They are both variants on the same course, each featuring different diversions part-way through.

  • Seaside Route 765
  • Ridge City Highway

Ridge Racer Revolution[edit]

The next two courses are taken from Ridge Racer Revolution and again are both variants on the same course.

  • Sunset Drive
  • Crystal Coast Highway

Rage Racer[edit]

Courses #5 and #6 are taken from Rage Racer.

  • Union Hill District
  • Lakeside Parkway

R4: Ridge Racer Type 4[edit]

Courses #7 and #8 are taken from R4: Ridge Racer Type 4.

  • Crimsonrock Pass
  • Diablo Canyon Road

Rave Racer[edit]

The next two courses are all taken from the arcade-only title Rave Racer. Their appearance here marks the first time these courses have ever been playable outside of the arcades.

  • Midtown Expressway (based on Rave Racer's 'City' course)
  • Greenpeak Highlands (based on Rave Racer's 'Mountain' course)

The final two courses are also based loosely on Rave Racer:

  • Silvercreek Dam
  • Downtown Rave City

However the exact course layouts of Silvercreek Dam and Downtown Rave City have not been in any of the previous arcade or PlayStation Ridge Racer titles. Although, in typical Ridge Racer fashion, they share (very small) sections of track from previous courses. Silvercreek Dam shares a section of track from Greenpeak Highlands (Rave Racer’s Mountain course), whereas Downtown Rave City shares a section with Midtown Expressway (Rave Racer’s City course).


The music in the game is a collection of new songs and songs taken from previous Ridge Racer games, arranged across several "discs". The "Red" and "Blue" discs contain all-new songs put together specifically for the game while the two "Classic" discs contains a collection of remastered songs from Ridge Racer titles. Lastly, the "Remix" disc contains songs from past titles remixed by the original composer.

Red Disc[edit]

  1. Highride
  2. Warp Trooper
  3. Bassrider
  4. Pulse Phaze
  5. Chrome Drive
  6. Synthetic Life

Blue Disc[edit]

  1. Disco Ball
  2. Night Stream
  3. Light Groove
  4. Vanishing Horizon
  5. Tunnel Visionary
  6. Tek Trek

Remix Disc[edit]

  1. Rotterdam Nation Remix - from the PlayStation titles, Ridge Racer and Ridge Racer Revolution.
  2. Speedster Remix - from the PlayStation titles, Ridge Racer and Ridge Racer Revolution.
  3. Drive U 2 Dancing Remix - from the Arcade title Ridge Racer 2 and the PlayStation title, Ridge Racer Revolution.
  4. Rareheroes - featured in many past Ridge Racer titles.
  5. Blue Topaz Remix - from the arcade title, Rave Racer.
  6. Motor Species Remix - from the PlayStation title, Ridge Racer Type 4.

Classic Disc 1[edit]

  1. Ridge Racer - A remastered version of the title tune from the PlayStation title, Ridge Racer.
  2. Grip - from the arcade title, Ridge Racer 2, and the PlayStation title, Ridge Racer Revolution.
  3. Euphoria - from the arcade title, Rave Racer.
  4. Silver Stream - from the PlayStation title, Rage Racer.
  5. Naked Glow - from the PlayStation title, Ridge Racer Type 4
  6. Your Vibe - from the PlayStation title, Ridge Racer Type 4.

Classic Disc 2[edit]

  1. Move Me - from the PlayStation title, Ridge Racer Type 4.
  2. Movin' in Circles - from the PlayStation title, Ridge Racer Type 4.
  3. Eat 'Em Up! - from the PlayStation title, Ridge Racer Type 4. (This was a secret track acquired along with the Pac-Man car after unlocking all 320 of the cars featured in the game.)
  4. TsuiTsui - from the PlayStation 2 title, Ridge Racer V.
  5. Samurai Rocket - from the PlayStation 2 title, Ridge Racer V.
  6. Daredevil - from the PlayStation 2 title, Ridge Racer V.


Aggregate scores
Aggregator Score
GameRankings 88.62%[2]
Metacritic 88/100[3]

Ridge Racer received critical acclaim and success. Its graphical ability and visuals was incredible on a portable device in 2004, and it was further praised for its gameplay, soundtrack (which also consisted of remixed tracks from older Ridge Racer titles) and multiplayer option. PALGN gave the game 8.5/10, saying it "shows the system off beautifully, the graphics and the gameplay combining to make this the greatest Ridge Racer title yet." GameBiz rated the game 9.5/10, "Anyone doubting the power of the handheld will be left eating their words after sampling just one lap of this unbelievably accomplished first effort from Namco." Its 88.62% aggregate score on GameRankings makes it the highest rated title of the Ridge Racer series, one of the highest for the PSP overall, and among the highest in the racing genre for any portable system.[2]


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