Amazon.com Those die-cast metal cars that supplied endless hours of vroom vroom as a child are back in their very own PlayStation game. This fast action game captures the feeling of playing with Hot Wheels cars and the most deluxe track set ever imagined. While retaining some elements of a video game racer, Hot Wheels manages to shun the current trend toward real-world physics and instead focuses on wild airborne stunts and wondrously loopy track design. Like most racing games, the idea is to finish first. However, to win you must pull off some acrobatic maneuvers such as barrel rolls and somersaults to gain turbo boost rewards and blast past your opponents. Keeping a third-person viewpoint and simplistic controls, Hot Wheels Turbo Racing provides just the right touch to re-create the experience of zooming your own Hot Wheels cars around the living room. The addition of moody, thematic track backgrounds and scorching sound and visual effects transforms every toy-playing kid's fantasy world into a digital reality. --Jeff Young Pros: Simplistic controls and outrageous stunts make the game perfect for all skill levels Real Hot Wheels cars and inspired tracks make the game shine Cons: Not a hard core racing simulation fan's game Review Forget about the collectors value. Hot Wheels were meant to be taken out of their packaging, pushed around, wrecked, and driven off makeshift cliffs that consisted of your couch cushions. Hot Wheels Turbo Racing captures the look and feel of those popular little cars and manages to deliver a surprisingly excellent gaming experience along the way. At first glance, it's easy to dismiss Hot Wheels Turbo Racing as just another racing game. It's got the standard options, including car and track select, a practice mode, and some championship races. But the cars and tracks are what make it so different. The cars, all modeled after real-life Hot Wheels cars from the past and present, look really good, right down to the wheels. The tracks are filled with lots of tight twists and turns, as well as some loops and corkscrews thrown in for good measure. On top of that, a good portion of the road on these tracks actually look like actual Hot Wheels track pieces. Plus, the tracks have been designed with lots of big jumps and several shortcuts to help keep things interesting. The big jumps aren't just for show, either. When you catch air, you can pull all kinds of crazy stunts. The better the stunt, the more turbo boosts you earn. With some of the more stunt-oriented cars, you can do all kinds of helicopter spins, barrel rolls, and backflips. Combining the three types of spins in the same stunt is where you really start to earn lots of turbo. The physics of the game really makes jumping, driving, and pulling off big stunts a real blast. Graphically, Hot Wheels Turbo Racing puts on a pretty good show. Sure, it could be a little bit faster and a little bit cleaner, but they definitely get the point across, and they don't get in the way of the gameplay. The sound effects are filled with all types of tire squeals, engines, and explosions, but the music is a really nice touch. The soundtrack features songs by Primus, Metallica, Meat Beat Manifesto, and Mix Master Mike. It's a shame that many will underestimate Hot Wheels Turbo Racing just because it's got the toy car license attached to it. The driving is great, and the stunt aspect of the game gives it a skateboard-like feel. It's definitely poised to become a sleeper hit. --Jeff Gerstmann --Copyright ©1999 GameSpot Inc. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part in any form or medium without express written permission of GameSpot is prohibited. GameSpot and the GameSpot logo are trademarks of GameSpot Inc. -- GameSpot Review
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