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Remember the old Hanna-Barbera cartoon series Wacky Races? Postmodern revisionism has given the obscure show a new lease on life, thanks to the Cartoon Network's retro-programming. And what better way to celebrate Wacky Races' unlikely resurrection than with a video game tie-in, 2000 style?
Wacky Races is one of the first entries in the kart racing genre to grace the screen of the color handheld system. Get behind the wheel of one of eight vehicles, including four hidden ones. At the start of the game, you can choose Penelope Pitstop's Compact Pussycat, Rufus Ruffcut and Sawtooth's Buzz Wagon, the Ant Hill Mob's Bullitt-Proof Bomb, and the Slag Brothers' prehistoric Boulder Mobile.
Advance far enough into the game and you'll unlock Wacky Races' star players: Sergeant Blast and Private Meekly in their Army Surplus Special, the dashing Peter Perfect with his Turbo Terrific, Red Max in his Crimson Haybailer, and of course, the oh-so-evil Dick Dastardly and his mangy sidekick Muttley in the menacing Mean Machine.
There are four modes of play in Wacky Races: Arcade mode, Championship mode, Time Trial mode, and Endurance mode. The Arcade mode pits you against the seven other drivers across three groups of three tracks each. Each track takes place in a particular U.S. state, with a desert backdrop for Nevada, snowy peaks in Alaska, and so on. Rank among the top three in a given race, and you'll advance to the next track. Complete three tracks, and you'll earn a cup before advancing again to the next group. There are nine tracks total in the Arcade mode.
Championship mode has you racing to earn points for finishing well. At the end of the nine-track circuit, the racer with the highest number of points wins the event. The Time Trial mode sets you in competition with your most ruthless adversary: yourself. Try to beat your fastest time completing each track. Finally, the Endurance mode rewards daredevil driving by eliminating the last player to cross each checkpoint.
Along the tracks, you'll come across numerous bonus items that may give you a temporary advantage, or put your opponents at a serious disadvantage. There are three offensive bonus items and four defensive items. The turbo and super turbo items will give you a quick blast of speed to zip past your competitors. The ghost item makes you invisible to your enemies and allows you to pass through obstacles.
Meanwhile, the coveted invincibility token makes you invulnerable to all hazards, as well as blasts to kingdom come all who get in your path. Offensive bonus items include two forms of rockets: burning and freezing, and a little number called the Ultimate Weapon. Execute this, and every opponent on the screen will be struck by a bolt of lightning.
You've got more to fret about than just your rivals, however. There are numerous hazards in the road like oil slicks and land mines that can seriously hinder your progress. Learn to avoid these obstacles, and meanwhile, take advantage of strategically placed ramps.
The options menu allows you to toggle the game's difficulty setting, switch between kilometers and miles, and even choose the language: Spanish, French, and English. Wacky Races also features passwords for saving your progress. ~ Christian Huey, All Game Guide