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Manx TT Super Bike Reviewed by Tom Lenting on . Rating: 78%
Manx TT Super Bike
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  • Review Score:

  • B+
Before you'll play Manx TT Super Bike, you must be prepared to get used to an announcer yelling crappy English speaking voice-overs. When the game starts he already goes: 'Manx TT Super Bike!!' While playing the game, you'll usually hear him scream: 'Hakkinen Checkcoin!' with which he means 'passing the checkpoint!'

Manx TT is a motor racing game in the style of Electronic Arts' Road Rash and is based on the racing event on the Isle of Man of the same name. I guess the tracks are based on the original tracks as well, but I'm not sure of that.

Manx TT was a hit in the arcade, so it was no surprise that the Saturn received a full scale version as well. First of all, it's possible to play Manx TT in the 'arcade' mode, but surprisingly this is the least fun option in the game. You aren't allowed to pick a bike and the one you ride is a little hard to control. Also, the arcade mode lets you play only the two original tracks, and is (party due to the control) too difficult. Far for more satisfying to play is the all-new 'Saturn'-mode, which features different bikes and tracks. To be honest, I only found one of them really controllable (the light green one). The other bikes seem to be responding too accurately, which means a little touch left or right is a giant shift for your bike.

The biggest letdown is the lack of circuits - they're only two original ones (which can be played reviews thanks to the mirror versions of the tracks). The frame rate is almost as choppy as in Daytona USA (especially in the two-player mode) - the track is sometimes popping up almost in front of you. They are two different camera-options - a view directly on the road and one from behind the motor (like Road Rash) - out of which only the last one is really useable. Using the road view it's almost impossible to estimate and take curves well, making it seems like your character is drunk. Also, it's possible for your opponents to drop off their bikes, but not for the player! The collision detection is a little plain: riding against walls or opponents just slows you down, but won't make you crash.

But these drawbacks don't diminish the gameplay of Manx TT. The Saturn-mode is very fun to play and really gives a feeling of speed, despite the choppy surroundings. The music is fast-paced as well; it has a way of speeding up the adrenalin. The motorcycle sometimes sounds like a vacuum-cleaner, but hey, what else should a motorbike sound like? The four circuits are all fun to play, with only one impossible double S-curve on the second (and accordingly on the fourth, mirrored version of it). The opponents are well programmed - they're beatable, but they give you a real challenge to do so. Unlocking the 'Super Bike'-mode is a nice challenge, but if you manage to accomplish that it's a little disappointing (you just get to race with faster, harder to control 'super bikes'). The two-player mode gives the same feeling of speed as the Saturn-mode, though it looks a lot uglier. All are small and choppy, but even then you can get the same suspense out of it as racing against the computer. The 'time trail'-mode is also a nice extra, in which you can practice further to diminish the lap times.

Maybe Manx TT Super bike doesn't have the charisma of Daytona USA or the polish of Sega Rally, but it still gives the player an excellent feeling of speed and it's a lot of fun to play!
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