Hello and welcome to another exciting entry of Forgotten Racers of SEGA’s Past! Sorry we had to skip a week, but I’m back again, and it’s time for one of my favorites!
Now this week’s Forgotten Racer is kind of special, to commemorate the release of 3D OutRun that I covered a little while ago, I’m going to be covering one of my favorites of the OutRun series,and the most overlooked; OutRun 2019. This will also mark the first time I’m taking a look at a Genesis game, trust me,it won’t be the last.
OutRun 2019 was released in 1993 for the SEGA Genesis, developed by SIMS Corporation and published by SEGA. By some, 2019 is either bashed, considered not a true OutRun game or it’s just completely overlooked, which is a shame, considering OutRun 2019 is one of the best Genesis racers I’ve played.
Sure, it may have taken a completely different direction than the other OutRun games before, but that’s what makes it awesome. Just the different things they did with 2019 made it that much more awesome.
OutRun 2019, at its core, is the OutRun of the future, complete with a super-fast futuristic car (with a rocket booster) and everything. The usual Ferrari fare takes the back seat this time around, which isn’t a bad thing, taking into account the car designed for 2019 looks completely badass. Instead of just one course with multiple goals, you race through four different courses with different environments for each.
This develops a kind of hybrid in course design with the straight-forward sprints of Turbo OutRun, and the changing paths of the original. In my opinion, that changes things up, making the gameplay feel fresh. This is just one of the many innovations and new spins OutRun 2019 brought to the table. Gameplay is your standard OutRun fare, drive fast and get to the goal.
There are four courses and four different environments: City, Temple/Ruins, World and a final course that’s a mix up of city stages. Also new to OutRun 2019 is the addition of jumps and shortcuts. Scattered around the courses are little jump ramps that you can use to get to roads above you, go over patches or rough terrain, and get access to different secret routes to shave those couple of precious seconds off your final time.
SIMS Corporation tried something pretty cool with its graphics with implementing different altitudes of roads. In certain courses, the road will split up and down, giving you the chance to drive higher in the air or lower on the ground. Just be careful though because driving at high altitudes comes a price; if you’re unable to keep your speed up, your car will flip right over.
Another new feature is the automatic rocket boost. Once your car hits about 550-600 MPH, you get a sudden boost of speed which continues until you brake or crash. Think of it like the nitro boosts from Turbo OutRun or Chase H.Q.
Visually, OutRun 2019 holds up pretty well. The frame-rate is good, the roadside scenery looks great for its time and the cars look awesome.
Now, here comes the part where OutRun 2019 shines in my opinion: its soundtrack. For 2019, SIMS ditched the usual calm, chill driving music and went for some techno kind of beats. It sounds great. I like the addition of faster paced music in an OutRun game, and it fits the mood OutRun 2019 was going for. A gritty futuristic racing game,with blasting techno in the background. Shigeki Sato really did a number on this one.
All in all, OutRun 2019 is awesome. An great racing game based in the future, with kickass music and graphics. Dismissed by others ,ignored by the rest, but it’s still one of the best Genesis racers and one of the best OutRun games in my opinion. So worth a play if you have a Genesis. There is also a Plug & Play version released, as well. Anyway, I think I “nerdgasmed” enough about OutRun 2019, so go play it already!
As usual, if you have a request for a Forgotten Racer you’d like to see reviewed, just leave a comment or hit up on Twitter. Steal into the night my friends, and I’ll see you on the neon-lit roads!