copyright © Jedo Dre 2011

Road Rash (1995)

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Impact: Forgettable

Road Rash is a strange creature. The new millennium is picking up speed and games where human faces can actually be confused for human faces are starting to show up. Any other game from the last millennium looks so horrible that it is staggering to think how back in the day we thought it looked cool. Yet Road Rash still looks appealing after all these years.

During the actual gameplay it achieves this via a type of 2D graphics that look colorful and a bit cartoony, yet not very pixilated like some of most of the later 2D and 3D games, especially if you are playing Road Rash on the PC.

Outside the bike racing, in the menus, the caricature nature of real life pictures with the Friday night bar atmosphere never gets old and breathes in a visual and role-playing mood that sticks in your mind.

The gameplay is quite brilliant and original - can't remember the last time there was a bikers' club where the bikers raced illegally while trying to knock one another off the bikes with blunt weapons and thereafter have a beer and talk it through at the bar - doesn't that just sound like it would make an interesting game?

I can still remember trying to beat up certain characters and leave the others alone so that I could decide who my friends and enemies are and then read the funny stuff they had to say to me. The videos of police chases are hilarious as well. Humor is what this game pulls off nicely.

This good being said, I can hardly remember a different cause for all the missing keys on my keyboard...and the bite marks on my mouse....and that loose front part of the screen. The races are fast, and one tiny obstacle can set you flying from your bike. Closer to the finish this means you have to restart of the map as there is no chance of getting back to your bike and catching up to your opponents on time. Moreover, there seems to be an auto-update feature for your AI pals: once you buy a faster bike - they all do. On the final level it may take well over a week to pass each map, depending on your reaction speed and patience.

Map variety is also a bit poor. Each level opens new maps, but each map is simply the same as the one from the previous level, but this time extended, so that in the final level you get to ride on the full track.

If you don't kill your PC first, then you too can enjoy Road Rash and maybe even finish each and every map in the game. The game's appeal though never gets old.