It isn't very well known that, besides Zelda and Mario, Micro Machines also got the special CD-i treatment. Philips recycled the classic Codemasters game in a horribly jerky, slow and practically unplayable piece of garbage. Hooray, Philips, congratulations! You've done it again - another immense disgrace to videogame history which appeared on the CD-i timeline.
Oh, before we get ahead of ourselves, Micro Machines is a game in which you drive little toy cars over tables, bathtubs, beaches and so on. It was an excellent game on almost all early Sega and Nintendo consoles.
The first thing I thought when I played this version of Micro Machines was: 1) this is a very sick, inappropriate joke, or, 2) this game wasn't even finished before it got released. It must be one of those options, because I can't imagine any other reason how they could have totally messed this port up.
Yes, they added some typical "CD" extra's to the original game. At the beginning of every race there is a mediocre zoom-in from a distance of your vehicle. And there is some CD-quality guitar semi-rock which I didn't like too much and is totally out of place for the game, but hey, if you've got CD audio, you're going to use it, aren't you? Guess so. Furthermore, there are no added special features, just the usual options: challenge, head-to-head and two-player.
What could they have possibly done to mess up so much and bring out my hatred for this Micro Machines port? First of all, the game is horribly slow. The animation is so jerky and the whole thing just has that overwhelming feeling of sluggishness which will make you think it can crash any moment. It's hard to understand how slow this whole game is if you haven't played it - those fans of the original Micro Machines series on the Genesis will be shocked by the non-existent 'speed' here.
The controls are also completely messed up. It isn't possible to slow down your car by pressing the reverse/break when you're accelerating. No, now you've actually got to release the acceleration button before you're able to do any breaking! If you do accidently press them together, you pause the game! Due to the jerky frame rate and idiotic control system the game isn't playable in the sense of having fun. Yeah, maybe it is possible to move your slow-motion vehicle along the well-known breakfast tables and pencils, but it is the same thing like, well, say driving on the highway just using the first gear.
That's actually how this game feels: like all the vehicles still have their handbrakes on. Furthermore, there are NO sound effects in the entire game! No motor, nor collision, nor dropping of an area will produce any sound. The only sound is the mentioned quite rapid semi-rock, which is more like an ironic statement of the crappiness.
Don't get me wrong. I love Micro Machines. I enjoyed all the Genesis outings very, very much. But I freaking hate this CD-i port. If it just had been some usual crappy CD-i game my disgust wouldn't have been so huge now than that it actually has been licensed as a Micro Machines game! It's hard to understand how an atrocious excess like this could ever have passed the quality control of Philips and, especially, Codemasters. I wouldn't be surprised if these companies deny even making the game, because it is so unbelievably bad that it's tragic blot on the their whole series no matter how much fun the other games were.
Luckily, you've now been warned by your loyal Defunct Games reviewer who, for your well-being, checked out yet another game in the "obscure annals of the CD-i library" (to quote Chad). When you think about it, Philips' console can almost be considered as a metaphor for life. Initially there were a lot of good intentions which mostly have led to failures and mockery, if that isn't very human I don't know what is. Playing this Micro Machines port is similar to the one unfortunate time in life you're punched in the face, kicked in the crotch and robbed of all your belongings. If you happen to see a copy of the game, destroy it so no one will ever have to experience it again. Thank you.