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A throwback to such titles as Apogee's Death Rally, Karnaaj Rally brings top-down vehicular mayhem to the Game Boy Advance. In Career mode, players progress through four individual race series, each offering new courses and a selection of three unique vehicles. In each series, players race against three CPU opponents, the aim being to place as high as possible. Rockets and mines can be employed during a race to hinder the opposition, while turbo can be used to speed through the pack. Though extra turbo can be acquired — along with rockets, mines, money, and health — through power-ups that are scattered about the track, the racer's position at the end of each lap determines the amount of turbo that is automatically replenished. The further back in the pack, the more turbo is granted. Losing all health takes a player out of the race.
Each of the game's 22 courses features interactive elements, such as traffic cones, rocks, and even the occasional wandering animal. The finishing position in each race determines the championship points and money earned; the latter can be gambled or spent on upgrades and extra armaments. Gambling allows players to earn extra money by attempting to guess one of a number of outcomes, such as the correct finishing order. Away from the Career mode, players can also compete in Quick Race and Ghost events, utilizing any vehicles or courses already unlocked.
Additionally, top race and lap times can be uploaded to the Karnaaj Rally website, via an 18-character, alphanumeric password, where they'll be ranked alongside the best scores of other players. Four battery backup save slots are provided. The multiplayer portion of the title supports four-player simultaneous play, though each participant requires his or her own copy of the game. Options such as player handicaps, tracks, and vehicles used can be tweaked as desired. Four of the smaller courses are unique to the multiplayer mode. Karnaaj Rally's graphics engine makes use of a combination of both 2D and 3D objects. ~ Gavin Frankle, All Game Guide