February 17th, 2006, 01:44 Posted By: wraggster
<blockquote>Outrun 2006: Coast to Coast gathers the best of the Outrun 2 and Outrun SP arcade games and adds on an entirely new mission mode, online options over Internet and LAN for ALL versions (yes, including PSP Internet Wi-Fi play) for up to six players; plus brand new cars and music.
There's also a whole host of entirely new features in the game too, including 'Outrun Miles' which allow you to buy new stuff in the showroom, enhanced 'slipstreaming' whereby you can increase your speed by slyly making use of a leading car's slipstream, and chasing 'rival' Ferraris in the game, which gives you a more regular incentive to push your car just that little bit faster.
All in all it’s shaping up to be pretty much the ultimate Outrun experience. Which means it’s pretty much the ultimate home arcade experience. Its like we're nearly reaching that arcade high we've been looking for all these years. The one which we first experienced all those years ago on the original sit-down Outrun arcade machine in some seedy, smoky arcade in a rainy, northern seaside town, now taken over by heroin and prostitution though still serving good fish and chips.
The basic rules of Outrun are quite easy. Don’t crash and drive dead fast. After that, the rest pretty much falls into place. You also have to remember that Outrun is not in any way a driving simulator (like Gran Turismo for example) but that its an arcade game, and as such is not limited in any way by having to mimic real-world physics. It's all about drifting. Like the real world, just better as drifting is actually really hard to do and usually results in crashing into a roundabout as one SPOnG writer found out recently to his cost.
Playing the PSP version, we were soon mastering drifting in this diminutive form and marvelling at the great job Sumo Digital has done with this handheld port, keeping the game as faithful to the original arcade experience as we could imagine. It must be said that Sumo has once again showered itself in glory. And by glory we mean the tickertape and confetti kind, not the other kind the Germans like.
And then SEGA dropped THE BOMBSHELL. Not only will the PSP version support multiplayer Wi-Fi gaming between players in the nearby vicinity. It will also support Wi-Fi Internet play. Yes, you might want to re-read that. Outrun 2006: Coast to Coast will be the second PSP game with online 'infrastructure' gaming. The first was a first party game, Twisted Metal, released last year and the next SOCOM game should also support it, which is also a first-party SCEE offering. Outrun is perhaps as important to PSP as Mario Kart was to the DS.
So, you can play against your mates all over the world on your PSP providing you are logged into a suitable Wi-Fi service. And, OK, while Sony is not providing an extensive network of free Wi-Fi hotspots a la Nintendo, this is Outrun we are talking about. It’s the best arcade racing game SPOnG has ever played on a handheld console. And we are looking forward to tanning our mates all over the world at a powersliding head-to-head whilst sitting in bed, or sitting on the toilet or even (if we can be bothered to pay the inflated wireless tariffs) sipping on a toffee nut latte in our local Starbucks. </blockquote>
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