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The Video Game Critic
Inclement weather conditions include realistic rain and gorgeous snowstorms. With one or two minor exceptions, the electronic tunes are outstanding, and the car engine sound effects are mercifully understated. But what makes Racing Gears extra addictive is its championship mode, which lets you soup up your car as you compete in progressively difficult circuits. The upgrade screens are easy to use, and the game saves your place automatically. In an era when most console games are more concerned with realism (Gran Turismo) or chaos (Burnout), Racing Gears delivers what really counts: the fun! Remember that?
Basically, Racing Gears Advance is one sweet ride on the GBA. It's so great to have a driving game on this system that some meat to it, but is still simple enough to pick up and play for a few minutes at a time. Thanks to the thoughtfully designed courses, tight control, and -- thank goodness -- a battery backup and autosave feature, Racing Gears Advance is a pleasure to play from start to finish line.
The day Codemasters shipped out the original Micro Machines for the Nintendo Entertainment System was the day I fell madly in love with top-down racing games. Similar games in the genre have come and gone before and since then, but it was Micro Machines that really brought the magic to the forefront of arcade-style racing. Orbital Media's clearly on the same wavelength, as the company's first game out of the gate, Racing Gears Advance, takes the same energetic approach to arcade racing. The development team has offered up a great looking, tight controlling, and extremely creative GBA racer that brings back a lot of those old Micro Machines feeling, something that hasn't felt since the release of Paragon 5's Karnaaj Rally and Micro Machines shipped on the system.
Orbital Media's Racing Gears Advance is a delightful throwback to the genre of isometric-view racers, which hasn't been great since the days of Rock N Roll Racing and Ironman Ivan Stewart's Super Off Road. Featuring tight racing controls, 12 wacky drivers encapsulated in 12 real-life vehicles, and fast-paced, addictive, and challenging racing, Racing Gears Advance is simply a great game in every respect.
Game Informer Magazine
While certainly not as deep as many console offerings, I'd be hard pressed to name a better racer to take with you on the road.
Game Informer Magazine
With all the hubbub over the DS, Nintendo's other child - the GBA - isn't getting quite the love that it once did. Thanks to Orbital Media, however, Racing Gears Advance bucks its anonymous name and gives the system a solid, fun experience that isn't quite as throwaway as it seems.
Think of Racing Gears Advance as the classic Rock & Roll Racing without the rock & roll. Featuring an eclectic mix of actual licensed cars (not that you can tell), a cast of cartoon characters, weapon enhancements and overhead RC-style driving, RGA coalesces into a pretty fun racer. The varied courses are visually detailed, but more importantly feature some impressively complex designs and plenty of shortcuts that prompt practice and mastery. The AI is aggressive, but loads of upgrades are available to give you a much-needed edge and add an element of strategy. On the downside, paying for repairs seems like an unnecessary double punishment, and the intense action cramped up my hands on the little GBA.