Runabout (series)

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Runabout is a series of destruction-themed driving games developed by Climax Entertainment. Games in this series have been released on PlayStation, PlayStation 2, Dreamcast and Nintendo 3DS. Runabout's main missions consist of the player driving from point A to point B in order to pick up or deliver an item. The first game had more than one map to choose from, whereas the later ones utilized one city map modeled after an actual location—San Francisco in Super Runabout (Dreamcast) and New York in Runabout 3 Neo Age (PlayStation 2). Players start off with just a few vehicles. When players complete a mission, destroy as much as they can, or drive without damaging anything, they are rewarded with a new vehicle. In the newer games, players are also rewarded with paint jobs and special abilities for each individual vehicle.

Although made in Japan, all games in the series feature mostly English text and dialogue regardless of the region. Vehicles across all games include a pickup truck, NSR (Honda NSX), F1 car, tank, and various novelty vehicles such as the RCC (radio-controlled car).

Titles[edit]

Felony 11–79 (Runabout)[edit]

Felony 11–79 (Runabout)
Developer(s) Climax Entertainment
Publisher(s)
Director(s) Kazushige Inaba
Designer(s) Kan Naitō
Platform(s) PlayStation
Release PS:
  • JP: May 23, 1997
  • NA: August 31, 1997
  • EU: December 1997
Genre(s) Racing
Mode(s) Single Player

The first game in the series was known outside Japan and Asia as Felony 11–79 and was Designed and produced by Kan Naito. While it features three separate environments (DOWN TOWN, SEA SIDE, METRO CITY) and a test course as opposed to the later games' use of one city, the game itself is rather short. Most of the player's time is spent unlocking the game's many bonus vehicles. Even players can set the car's performance included steering, front suspension, rear suspension, grip balance, acceleration and brake. All cars have a different performance rate (horsepower, torque, length, weight, fuel). Players may need to refill the tank. This feature only on this episode.

Runabout 2[edit]

List of Runabout 2 vehicles[edit]

Runabout 2
Developer(s) Climax Entertainment
Publisher(s)
Director(s) Yoshiaki Takaoka
Designer(s) Yoshiaki Takaoka
Platform(s) PlayStation
Release PS:
  • JP: November 18, 1999
  • NA: May 19, 2000
  • EU: February 2, 2003
Genre(s) Racing
Mode(s) Single Player

Super Runabout: San Francisco Edition (The Golden State)[edit]

Super Runabout: San Francisco (The Golden State)
Developer(s) Climax Entertainment
Publisher(s)
Director(s) Koji Takahashi
Designer(s) Toshiaki Sakai
Platform(s) Dreamcast
Release DC:
Super Runabout:
  • JP: May 25, 2000
Super Runabout: San Francisco (The Golden State):
  • NA: October 28, 2000
  • EU: December 8, 2000
  • JP: June 21, 2001
Genre(s) Racing
Mode(s) Single Player

Released in Japan as Super Runabout, it is the first iteration for the Dreamcast. An updated version was made and released in the US as Super Runabout: San Francisco, possibly for easier name recognition and to be more commercial friendly. Released in PAL districts as Super Runabout: The Golden State and finally in Japan again as Super Runabout: San Francisco (the updated version).

Reception[edit]

On release, Famitsu magazine rated the game a 31 out of 40.[1]

Runabout 3: Neo Age[edit]

Runabout 3: Neo Age
Developer(s) Climax Entertainment
Publisher(s)
Platform(s) PlayStation 2
Release PS2:
  • JP: May 23, 2002
  • EU: August 14, 2003
Genre(s) Racing
Mode(s) Single Player

Released only in Japan and Europe, this third follow-up for the PlayStation series offers just one city, the city of New York. The graphics were improved over those of the previous game. Alterations included improved reflections and character animations, and generally higher polygon counts on the game's vehicle, as well as character and object models. The game featured sections where the player was required to drift crash to get "Drift Crash Points." There were also vehicle-jumping distance and speed records.

Extras[edit]

The Options menu featured two unlockable sections, one of which was an "Object List" in which every crashable object in the game was displayed. The names were written in colors to reflect their scarcity (items marked with gold being common, and those marked with green being special mission objects). Also in the options menu was the "Bonus Tip" list, where one could keep track of what bonuses were received as well as the criteria for obtaining bonuses not yet revealed. The bonuses ranged from unlockable vehicles to extra paint jobs or special actions for the vehicles.

Reception[edit]

On release, Famitsu magazine scored the game a 31 out of 40.[2]

Runabout 3D: Drive Impossible[edit]

The first 3D game in the series was released for the Nintendo 3DS in Japan on January 19, 2012. It was developed by Rocket Company. The game was released as Crash City Mayhem in Europe by British video game publisher, Ghostlight and in North America by American video game publisher, Majesco Entertainment.

Music in Runabout[edit]

Felony 11–79 (or Runabout in Japan), Super Runabout and Runabout 3 Neo Age all feature soundtracks performed by Japanese surf band Surf Coasters, who are known for their Dick Dale-esque sound.

References[edit]

  1. ^ ドリームキャスト – スーパーランナバウト. Weekly Famitsu. No.915 Pt.2. Pg.51. 30 June 2006.
  2. ^ プレイステーション2 – ランナバウト3・ネオエイジ. Weekly Famitsu. No.915 Pt.2. Pg.92. 30 June 2006.