Top Gear Rally

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Top Gear Rally
Cover art of Top Gear Rally
Developer(s) Boss Game Studios (Nintendo 64)
Vision Works (Game Boy Color)
Tantalus Interactive (Game Boy Advance)
Publisher(s) Nintendo 64
Game Boy Color
  • JP: Kemco
  • NA: Vatical Entertainment
  • EU: Kemco
Game Boy Advance
Series Top Gear
Platform(s) Nintendo 64, Game Boy Color, Game Boy Advance
Release Nintendo 64
  • NA: October 1997
  • EU: November 1997
  • JP: December 5, 1997
Game Boy Color
  • NA: March 25, 1999[1]
  • JP: April 23, 1999
  • EU: 1999
Game Boy Advance
  • JP: July 25, 2003
  • NA: October 28, 2003
  • EU: October 31, 2003
Genre(s) Racing
Mode(s) Single player, multiplayer

Top Gear Rally is a rally game for the Nintendo 64, Game Boy Color and Game Boy Advance. The Game Boy Color version was released under the name Top Gear Pocket, although the European release uses the original name; the Game Boy Advance version was released in Japan under the game Top Gear Rally SP. It features five tracks. It has a feature that allows the user to give their virtual cars custom paint jobs. Although the name stayed the same, the developers changed between consoles. As a result, the games are very different depending on the platform, but they often have similar features such as the paint shop.

Game versions[edit]

Nintendo 64[edit]

On the Nintendo 64, Top Gear Rally features a realistic physics model with functioning suspension. At the time, this was an impressive new gameplay development. Road surfaces, including their imperfections, were accurately modeled to give the player the feeling of actually driving a car.

The performance of each vehicle in the game was unique. Not only with respect to engine power, but also areas such as tire grip, suspension stiffness, steering tightness, and between different drive-trains such as front-wheel drive, rear-wheel drive, and four-wheel drive. The game also features the possibility of damaging the vehicles, although the damage does not affect performance.

The game's graphics were considered quite advanced for a home console system, being better than the PlayStation's then-available offerings.[citation needed] Smooth, non-pixelated, texture-mapped surfaces, highly detailed cars, and complex environments were displayed at a generally smooth frame rate. However, the number of on-screen vehicles couldn't exceed three without game speed being impaired.

Because neither Kemco or Boss Games Studios had licenses to use the real car names, the car names are somewhat disguised within the game. One can identify the cars either by looks or by the fact that the disguised names are often reminiscent of the real names.

The game features a soundtrack consisting of music with roots in the trance genre. The electronic XM music was composed by Barry Leitch, who also worked on the prior Top Gear games for the Super NES.

A noted game-play flaw with the Nintendo 64 version of the game is that it is possible for the player to gain an immense advantage over the computer players by riding the rails on the sides of the road in most tracks. The rails don't slow the car down nearly as much as normal cornering or drifting, allowing the player to maintain top speed even through very sharp turns. Boss Games' later N64 title, World Driver Championship, did not have this oversight.


The Japanese and European releases of Top Gear Rally had a different title tune than the North American version. The Japanese and European releases used hardcore dance music while the North American version was more mild and dramatic, produced by Barry Leitch.


Top Gear Rally was also ported to the PC and released in 1999 as Boss Rally.

Game Boy Advance[edit]

The Game Boy Advance version has 3D graphics considered impressive for the system.[2] It was released in 2003.


Review scores
Publication Score
AllGame N/A 3/5 stars[3] 4/5 stars[4]
Edge N/A N/A 7/10[5]
EGM N/A N/A 7.5/10[6]
Eurogamer 5/10[7] N/A N/A
Famitsu 30/40[8] N/A N/A
Game Informer 8/10[9] 6/10[10] 8/10[11]
GamePro N/A N/A 4/5 stars[12]
GameSpot 8.3/10[2] 5.3/10[13] 6.2/10[14]
GameSpy 4/5 stars[15] N/A N/A
Hyper N/A N/A 87%[16]
IGN 8/10[17] 7/10[1] 8.4/10[18]
Nintendo Power 3.7/5[19] 5.1/10[20] 7.5/10[21]
Aggregate scores
GameRankings 77%[22] 63%[23] 76%[24]
Metacritic 78/100[25] N/A N/A

The Game Boy Advance version received "generally favorable reviews" according to the review aggregation website Metacritic.[25] In Japan, Famitsu gave it a score of one seven, two eights, and one seven for a total of 30 out of 40.[8]



  1. ^ a b Jones, Tim (June 11, 1999). "Top Gear Pocket". IGN. Retrieved May 25, 2017. 
  2. ^ a b Provo, Frank (November 4, 2003). "Top Gear Rally Review (GBA)". GameSpot. Retrieved May 25, 2017. 
  3. ^ Woods, Nick. "Top Gear Pocket - Review". AllGame. Archived from the original on November 16, 2014. Retrieved May 25, 2017. 
  4. ^ Sackenheim, Shawn. "Top Gear Rally (N64) - Review". AllGame. Archived from the original on November 16, 2014. Retrieved May 25, 2017. 
  5. ^ Edge staff (December 1997). "Top Gear Rally (N64)". Edge (52): 74–75. 
  6. ^ "Top Gear Rally (N64)". Electronic Gaming Monthly. 1997. 
  7. ^ Reed, Kristan (December 2, 2003). "Top Gear Rally (GBA)". Eurogamer. Retrieved May 25, 2017. 
  8. ^ a b Yoshinoya, Bakudan (July 20, 2003). "Famitsu Update". Nintendo World Report. Retrieved May 25, 2017. 
  9. ^ Kato, Matthew (January 2004). "Top Gear Rally (GBC)". Game Informer (129): 160. Archived from the original on April 15, 2005. Retrieved May 25, 2017. 
  10. ^ "Top Gear Pocket". Game Informer (73). May 1999. 
  11. ^ "Top Gear Rally (N64)". Game Informer (56). December 1997. Archived from the original on September 8, 1999. Retrieved May 25, 2017. 
  12. ^ Bad Hare (1997). "Top Gear Rally Review for N64 on". GamePro. Archived from the original on February 20, 2005. Retrieved May 25, 2017. 
  13. ^ Davis, Cameron (January 28, 2000). "Top Gear Pocket Review". GameSpot. Retrieved May 25, 2017. 
  14. ^ Fielder, Joe (November 11, 1997). "Top Gear Rally Review (N64)". GameSpot. Retrieved May 25, 2017. 
  15. ^ Chandronait, Matt (November 5, 2003). "GameSpy: Top Gear Rally (GBA)". GameSpy. Archived from the original on November 5, 2005. Retrieved May 25, 2017. 
  16. ^ Stepnik, March (January 1998). "Top Gear Rally (N64)". Hyper. No. 51. pp. 74–75. 
  17. ^ Harris, Craig (October 24, 2003). "Top Gear Rally (GBA)". IGN. Retrieved May 25, 2017. 
  18. ^ Perry, Douglass C. (October 3, 1997). "Top Gear Rally (N64)". IGN. Retrieved May 25, 2017. 
  19. ^ "Top Gear Rally (GBA)". Nintendo Power. 174: 146. December 2003. 
  20. ^ "Top Gear Pocket". Nintendo Power. 120. May 1999. 
  21. ^ "Top Gear Rally (N64)". Nintendo Power. 102: 94. November 1997. Retrieved May 25, 2017. 
  22. ^ "Top Gear Rally for Game Boy Advance". GameRankings. Retrieved May 25, 2017. 
  23. ^ "Top Gear Pocket for Game Boy Color". GameRankings. Retrieved May 25, 2017. 
  24. ^ "Top Gear Rally for Nintendo 64". GameRankings. Retrieved May 25, 2017. 
  25. ^ a b "Top Gear Rally for Game Boy Advance Reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved May 25, 2017. 

External links[edit]