Chequered Flag Review | Personal Computer News - Everygamegoing

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Chequered Flag
By Sinclair Research
Spectrum 48K

 
Published in Personal Computer News #042

Fly The Flag

Chequered Flag is here bringing you an almost 3D, real time, simulation of, guess what? Driving a racing car!

Objectives

You are a racing driver with six of the world's most famous tracks and four Psion fantasy tracks to choose from.

Not only are you spoilt for choice when it comes to circuits to race on, but you also choose from three different cars.

Unlike real racing, you race against the clock; there are no other cars to slow you down, so your task is to beat the track record for a given circuit. A record is kept throughout the game of all ten of these.

First Impressions

The attention to detail in this program is very thorough. Each car is built differently, each track is, of course, unique, your view out of the car even wobbles when you have a puncture.

The documentation consists of five pages of instructions printed on the inlay card. All that you really need remember are the various control keys. The rest of the instructions are duplicated in glorious colour on screen. Another useful feature is the demonstration mode.

In Play

If no other game has persuaded you to buy a joystick then this one probably will - however, Psion has made no allowance for it with this software, so it you do buy one with Chequered Flag in mind, get a programmable interface. It is vital if good track times are to be set.

Having loaded a very long lump of machine code you first select your race track, then tell it how many laps you wish to race, and pick your car. Then it's fingers at the ready and wait for the green light.

The accelerator and brake are very responsive but it took quite some time to get used to the steering. Until that time I was forced to put up with a horrible screeching noise while I skidded around virtually every bend. In fact, skids or not, the program makes lots of noises, most of them not very pleasant. There is also a chugging noise that changes pitch with the engine revs. Great, but they can't be turned off!

The graphics are almost up to the 3D arcade driving games standard; almost, but alas, not quite. Chequered Flag's screen resembles that of Zzoom.

Verdict

Once past the initial hurdle of learning to drive. I found Chequered Flag an incredibly addictive game. With ten tracks and three cars there's plenty of variation while the on-track hazards like glass or oil slicks keep you on your toes throughout.

Bob ChappellRoger Howarth

Other Spectrum 48K Game Reviews By Bob Chappell


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