As a person who loves the stylised visuals of flat shaded polygons, and a fan of racing games in general, I was fascinated the first time I saw a screenshot of Sega’s Virtua Racing arcade game.
Unfortunately, as someone who had the questionable fortune to live in Milton Keynes, a town not known for its bountiful arcades, and at a time when arcades were dying a slow and painful death… I never got to see a working example of the arcade game, much less the chance to play it.
So my first experience of Virtua Racing was Virtua Racing Deluxe on Sega’s 32X add-on for the Mega Drive. It was a Christmas present from myself, to try and distract me from the fact that I’d just split up with my girlfriend and was in fact as miserable as sin.
Did it do the trick? Well, apart from the fact that I would now find it utterly impossible to play the 32X version of the game while listening to Kate Bush’s Red Shoes album (I had that on repeat for the whole day)… I came to absolutely love the game.
Needless to say, over the years I accumulated all the home versions, be they Mega Drive, Saturn, PS2, and much later… the Mame rom.
So what do I think of the arcade version, after all these years?
Do you need to ask?
You do? Watch the video
Okay… very briefly then. I struggled a little to find a functional configuration to play the game with my joypad, but this aside, I love it. It’s Virtua Racing. What more needs to be said?