Powerslide is set 20 years in the future; of course the earth is devastated, reminiscent of a Mad Max movie. Holes in the ozone layer, global warming and pollution have destroyed vegetation and food supplies. To escape the harsh environment, the middle and upper classes moved underground and built vast cities, while the poor were left on the surface to fend for themselves. Once again, off-road racing has become an exciting sport as players join the ultimate race between classes.
Gameplay, Controls, Interface
Powerslide is the closest thing to real Baja racing that I have ever seen (and I have a firsthand knowledge of this subject). Once you forget the storyline behind the game, you will see that it is just plain fun to play. A racing game really doesn’t need a story behind it, does it? But I guess that would explain the trophies at the end of the championship levels. They are pieces of fruit. I thought it was original to have ordinary fruit as a prize, but then again this is 20 years in the future and the world has been screwed up. Fruit would be a prize worth driving for.
I found that the cars reacted as they should in every scenario I put them in. And believe me, I drove them harder and faster than any person would ever think of. The name of the game is Powerslide and you have to perfect the art of powersliding to win any race. Remember to steer into the slide and you will be fine.
There is a designated track that you should try to stay on, but the game will allow you to go off on your own and just drive wherever your heart desires. If you plan on winning a race, I suggest that you stay on the track. But that is too boring! Powerslide has 12 tracks to race on, eight for single player and four for multiplayer. Tracks are unlocked as you progress through the game. You start at the novice level and have to win the championship before you can move on to the advanced level with different tracks.
Finally, a game that can be played over the Internet without any lag! Even with a bad connection and my buddies living all over the country, Powerslide ran smooth as silk over the Internet and never bogged down once. Kudos to the developers.
Everything about the game is visually stunning. I found that the cars looked and reacted better than any other driving game I have ever played. I was impressed with the detail that GT Interactive went into as far as rendering the cars and the environment. While some games on the market have opted to go with flat buildings and square rocks to help with performance problems, GT Interactive has pushed the limits and tried to make the game as realistic as possible. You have tunnels that actually look like round tunnels and buildings that are not just flat sprites. It is hard to believe that the game runs at around 60 frames per second without degrading the quality of detail.
The music for Powerslide is heart-pounding and fits the mood for the game. My favorite is the music for the first track, "Sand Blaster." I wanted to push the pedal to the floor and try to get as much horsepower out of the engine as I could. We all have songs that make us do that in our real cars (think "I Can’t Drive 55" by Sammy Hagar), right? Or is it just me? Oh, well, you get the point.
Room For Improvement
Powerslide is a great game with very few flaws. It is nice to see a game that runs so well right out of the box. The only thing that I would have liked to see would have been more tracks to race on, or maybe a track editor. The tracks on the CD are great, but after you finish them it would be nice to be able make your own. In this day and age we have a lot of gamers out there who can put the developers to shame when it comes to tweaking the game.
Minimum: Windows 95 or 98, Intel Pentium 133 MMX or better, 16 MB RAM, 4X CD-ROM drive, high color (16-color) capable video card, 20 MB hard drive space, DirectSound compatible sound card, DirectX 6.
Recommended: Intel Pentium II 233 or K6-2-3D NOW Processor, 32 MB RAM, 60 MB hard drive space, 3D accelerator (supports most major cards)
The manual is full of information for loading the game and the storyline. It isn’t really needed, because the game is pretty easy to get around in and is even easier to configure. It does give you hints as to how to get to the cheats in the game. But we all know that people don’t cheat in games.
If you are looking for a fast-paced racing game, then Powerslide should have been under your Christmas tree. I can’t say enough about the graphics in this game. I have never seen a game run so smoothly on my AMD K6-2 333 Mhz machine. Maybe you will find me racing on the Internet sometime. I'll be the one kicking dust on your windshield. I can’t drive 55! Hang on, here we go!
If traditional road racers leave you cold, GT's new dune-buggy romp may give you something to dig your treads into. True to its name, PowerSlide will challenge off-road veterans with realistic suspensions and long sliding turns that will take some skill to navigate. No wacky weapons here--it's racing, pure and simple, with some SF Rush-style secrets and shortcuts thrown in for good measure. Remarkably clean graphics, neural-network A.I., and a unique post-apocalyptic setting (such a thing is possible, even if the whole desolate-future subject has become clich6) give Power-Slide the inside track this fall.
Power Slide kicks off-road racing into high gear with excellent tracks, detailed graphics, and a wonderfully bleak vision of the future. It's a rare breed--half visual spectacle, half high-octane fun.
Oops--thatpesky environmental holocaust everyone's been predicting finally happens in the early 21st century. The rich grab their loot and go underground to rebuild a new corporate culture.Topside, it's a no-man's land filled with gritty survivors and gruesome outcasts--not to mention tons of abandoned cars. When the surface savages rev 'em up for some high-octane no-holds-barred thrills, the PowerSlide competition is born.
Sound familiar? Yep, the game's very Mad Max-like--and the developer, Ratbag, hails from Australia, no less. But there's rarely been another game that so completely puts players into the desolate future--and lets them have this much fun. Power-Slide's wastelands are fully realized, from its mutant automobiles to its lifeless, snowy mountains.You'll explore sprawling ghost cities and pass crumbling buildings half-buried under sand dunes. It's creepy... and really cool.
The Road Not Taken
In PowerSlide, getting there, is all the fun.There's no strict course--only tire tracks-and arrows to point your way--so exactly how you get to where you're going is entirely up to you. The developers have hidden cheat codes around the tracks for the brave and crazy to find, so there's still something to do once you've conquered the single-player mode--which is no small feat thanks to the game's sharp enemy A.I. Stunt drivers will delight in finding skateboard-style bowls and half-pipes tucked away beyond the main courses, and Power-Slide's multiplayer options extend its replay value.
There's not much to the gameplay, it's your basic gun-it-and-go arcade racer. But PowerSlide's great physics model, cool look, and overwhelming sense of atmosphere make it more than just another post-apocalyptic poseur. If off-roading is your thing, PowerSlide's worth the ride.
- Don't hold back In a pack-attack! Plow through tight traffic and push fools out of the way.
- You can't floor it around every comer every time. Let up on the gas and coast briefly, then accelerate to cut a better line.
- You can take this slimy shortcut on Mine ShaftecHust don't lose your momentum in the green stuff,'or you'H find yourself in last place by the time you recover.
- Sneak under this destroyed foundation for a good racing line on Urban Brawl.
- The pickup is more about Inertia than acceleration. Use its bulk to ram opponents.
- Type the word "GLIDER" during a race; a small airplane hop will appear in the upper-right comer. Now when you hit the brakes during a good Jump, you can soar around the track!
- Bounce off-your opponents' cars oh tight turns, like here In the parking garage in Urban Brawl.
Even though the futures anything but bright, PowerSlides 3D-accelerated graphics look sharp, slick, and realistic, perfectly placing gamers into a specific universe. And where else will you get to see 3Dfx-enhanced rust?
PqyverSlide is true to its title: If you don't enjoy skidding around turns as your wheels desperately dig for traction, this game's not for you. Driving with a stick or even a wheel can be frustrating; using the keyboard, however, offer's you immediate satisfaction.
Unlike many other racing games, these engines don't sound like weedwackers--you'll hear the distinctive whining wails of dune buggies that have long been ne-glected.The smack of colliding metal and gravel being kicked up complete the audio picture.
Offering as much foreboding ambiance as the Mod Max films, PowerSlide delivers great arcade-style racer with tons of attitude and atmosphere.