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Ferrari memories brought up to date.

Byline: By Gary Beckwith

Title: OutRun 2006: Coast 2 Coast

Format: PC CD ROM, (also available on PSP)

Publisher: SEGA

Price: pounds 29.99

One of my fondest childhood memories, after getting a Spider-man outfit for Christmas, is playing the coin-op game OutRun in the games arcades when I was around 11 or 12.

Most weekends when I should have been studying and getting ready for 'big school', you'd find me in Whitley Bay arcades, filling up the games machines with my hard-earned paper round money.

OutRun was by far the most popular driving game at the time and queues would often form around the block to play the virtual driving game.

You'd strap yourself into the oversized seats, rev the accelerator a couple of times just to impress the lasses, then make a cool James Dean glance towards your opponent sitting next to you.

Inevitably I'd have crashed by the first corner and another 50p and 40 minutes queuing was wasted but the thrill of driving a virtual Ferrari at 120mph was compensation enough.

OutRun 2006 for the PC is a sequel to the Xbox only OutRun 2, which was a sequel to the original OutRun from Sega's history.

The premise of the game hasn't changed much.

Blast your way across the USA in your favourite Ferrari, from the winding roads of San Francisco to the sun-kissed beaches of Miami. Feel the wind in your hair and the pull of the V12 engine as you power your way along the highways and byways with, as in the original game, a girl by your side.

The game has plenty of game modes but the Coast 2 Coast mode is the meat of the game.

Work your way through 30 glorious stages taking on a mixture of races and challenges.

Other game modes include checkpoint, time attack and heart attack races.

Heart attack is quite interesting in that you're given challenges, such as over-taking a certain number of cars to more ridiculous tasks like dribbling a huge beach ball through a track.

The games is straightforward to play. Hit the accelerator as hard as possible and travel at breakneck speeds. Obviously you need to brake occasionally but even if you hit a wall and throw your girlfriend from the car you're soon back on the road.

You can also draft behind cars to go even faster and powerslide around corners to reach the all-important finish line in time.

You can unlock OutRun miles in most of the game modes which you can use to buy more Ferrari models, ranging from the Testarossa to the Enzo, and as well as buying cars you can also buy new tracks and soundtrack songs.

The graphics are pristine and the car models feature a healthy amount of detail, including realistic shimmering reflections.

The tracks are varied enough to not get too monotonous and the background music includes a number of songs from the original OutRun, as well as some new funky tracks.

It's not the same as sitting in a noisy arcade with half a dozen spotty kids watching your every move and it's not the best driving game out there but the excitement and speed from the original has been updated and brought into the luxury of your home.

Good for newcomers, great for those who remember the original.
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Title Annotation:Sport
Publication:Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)
Date:Jul 21, 2006
Words:555
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