Thrust Twist + Turn Download (1999 Simulation Game)

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If you were into, or still are into miniature toy cars, the ultimate accessory is one of those plastic track thingies you attach to the sofa or stairs and hurl your cars down. Think of that as the starting point for Thrust, Twist and Turn, which is simplistic and enjoyable in much the same way.

Thrust's eight tracks are long slender ribbons suspended in space; twisting, diving and sometimes looping in a way unlike most other driving games. There's more than a little of the flavor of Miyamoto's F-Zero X for Nintendo 64. As you can't get that for the PC (without emulation!), you might consider TTT to be the next best thing.

The driving model is very simple, with no powersliding, easy turning and a nitro boost that plays a significant part of the game. It's all about speed, really, as you can reach amazing speeds on these thin slivers of track. The car sticks to the road even in improbable gravity situations, although jumping off crests is one of its regular features.

Visually, it bears a resemblance to Infogrames Dethkarz, with clean-cut futuristic graphics, but it's not quite as accomplished as that. In keeping with a game that has a slightly unfinished, patchy feel to it, there are both highpoints and lowpoints. The highpoint is the fabulous, ethereal cloud track, where the smooth banking curves and massive loop are quite sensational. Then again, on the 'Stormy' track the division between over and underwater sections is crudely made. The drawing distance is also not long enough to get the full effect of those big loops.

There is a current vogue for ultra-high speed racers, which means that TTT could suffer with the release of Lucasarts Star Wars branded Episode 1 Racer.

TTT has an easy-going playability, and some attractive sections but without any real depth, and signs that the game was rushed to completion. The idea of loops and ribbon tracks is novel, and hopefully the rollercoaster elements can be developed more in a sequel.

 

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ToonCar, Tough Trucks: Modified Monsters, Suzuki Alstare Extreme Racing, Test Drive 5, TrackMania Nations ESWC, Superbike 2001, Total Immersion Racing, Terminus

 

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