[h2]GBAtemp book game club #91[/h2] Kart racing special Time for another compare and contrast/suggest your favourites type thread, any console is considered but if you can play it on the GBA, DS or Wii, be it natively or via emulation that works well, we definitely want it. Though we are not great fans of the word "genre" as it is presently defined in game playing circles we will have to borrow a few terms here and there today, lest we spend our entire opener discussing it anyway. That said racing games have been around for as long as computer games have been an accessible hobby and thanks to things like slot car racing (usually known by the name of the dominant brand "Scalextric" by most) the concept of messing around with cars in a "just for fun" manner has been popular for a lot longer so it should not be so bad. For most the big division in the racing game concept is the simulation vs "arcade" split which roughly corresponds to cars using somewhat realistic handling and cars use a rather simplified version of physics and go roughly where you put them without having to observe things like braking distances and gears. It gets broken down a few more times and eventually you end up at so called kart racers. Just to add to the confusion there are simulation games that follow gokart racing and those are not quite what we are looking for today. For most people that do not follow things so much here the undisputed king of the hill is the Mario Kart franchise and, thanks to a few other would be franchises making some truly awful games, we have encountered the occasional person that will not consider looking beyond Mario Kart for such games. However if you dig slightly deeper you can find all sorts of interesting things; the N64 also saw Diddy Kong racing which some hold above the Mario Kart on the same system, the PS1 had Crash Team racing, various people have expressed an affection for Lego Racers and taking it back to the SNES/megadrive we will still not turn down a game of Street Racer. Most of the time when these games are attempted it is as a racing game for a cartoon or a developer but there have been the occasional asides by films like Star wars (though most probably remember the pod racing games there was another called Super Bombad Racing released a couple of years after that), standalone titles (the previously mention Street Racer being an example of a good one) and in recent years even Nascar has tried their hand at it. Depending upon how you want to view it such things have branched a bit as well with older games like Carmageddon and Road Rash (the megadrive versions are undisputed classics in our book, the later PC and GBA entries.... vary) and more recent titles like Split Second: Velocity or even some of the Need for Speed series also taking a few hints from the gameplay style. Generally gameplay involves sending about 8 racers around an outlandish track and though it is first past the line, save for Carmageddon unless you are boring, you are usually provided with assorted weapons/powerups and using them on your fellow racers is very much encouraged. Most will still have time trial modes and a few will also have various forms of battle modes. We can not really make this thread and not mention Mario Kart ROM hacking; with the exception of the arcade entries in the franchise and the as yet unhacked 3ds all the mario kart games see extensive reverse engineering and hacking work done. Hacks include backported versions of earlier games, reskins, adding back in beta tracks that were missing from the final cut, online track change hacks and straight up custom work. Indeed other than the Mario platform games and pokemon the mario kart games are possibly the third most hacked franchise in all of console hacking. The DS is definitely no stranger to this and several hacks have been made and several very nice tools to effect such hacks. The volume and frequently very extensive nature of the hacks will hopefully help make up for the gameplay style being fairly underrepresented, until you consider things like Tron lightcycle games at least, in the homebrew arena. If we do consider lightcycle games then homebrew does very well on all platforms as such games are only behind Pong and Tetris in the "my first proper homebrew" stakes with many going as far as to demonstrate better graphics and online multiplayer than many commercial games. Still a couple of kart racing games that are not Mario Kart for the time being, we will pick Konami Crazy Racers on the GBA, once recommended by GBAtemp recommends. Second up is Digimon Racing also on the GBA. This is one of the occasions where Digimon is not second place to Pokemon (we do not speak about Pokemon Dash if we can avoid it), it was made by Griponite games after the GBA Lord of the Rings games and before The Legend of Spyro: The Eternal Night, so basically right in the middle of their good phase. At the time the GBA had seen quite a few "mode 7" style games so it did not fare too well, we hold this might have been wrong. Some gameplay footage for both titles GBAtemp recommends (Konami Crazy Racers) GBAtemp release thread (Digimon Racing) We and the others reading are actively looking for your suggestions for a kart racing game today so please do share, going slightly off topic for a second though we will also refer you back to a much earlier edition of the book game club where we looked at Car Battler Joe. Keeping with the off topic theme for just a bit longer should you have a "micro machines" style game you want to share then definitely share that as well. Anyway kart racing- is "Mario kart or bust" the right mindset or is there something outside that franchise? We are working on getting a new searching mechanism working with the new forum software now our tag system has been changed. In the meantime all the editions are in this section and hopefully GBAGOTW should get you the other entries in the series. gbagotw. GBAtemp's book game club is one of our features on GBAtemp that we like to have, both to have more than just news and explore some of the various consoles we have covered over the years and games in general. For the most part the GBA, the DS and the Wii are where we look to so as to find games for selections but there is the occasional aside should the DS be able to emulate something and we try to note where a given selection was continued/preceded by an something on another console. However from those consoles there is a mountain of ROM hacks, commercial releases, homebrew code and leaked/beta code to look at and despite us nearing our 100th edition we are not even close to having to look hard to find interesting things to look at. The phrase "interesting things to look at" was chosen for a reason and that is that we are aspiring not to be another "top ?? games for a given console" feature and not to be focused entirely on "hidden gems". Such titles definitely feature as our selections from time to time but it is rather limiting and there are an awful lot of games that fell short of greatness but had some really interesting ideas worth exploring. At a glance this feature might appear similar to those which our friends in the "GBAtemp recommends!" project do and it is similar enough that we try not to cover the same games. However this feature is more about user discussions where recommends! looks to the person kicking off the thread for a proper review and history (something we deliberately try to avoid doing).