User Reviews

A major disappointment. Amstrad CPC Neville (3001)

Our Users Say

Platform Votes Score
Amiga 9 2.8
Amstrad CPC 5 2.1
Arcade Awaiting 5 votes...
Atari ST 5 3.4
Commodore 64 7 1.7
DOS 9 2.8
Genesis 11 2.1
Lynx 6 2.8
ZX Spectrum 5 3.1
Combined User Score 57 2.5

Critic Reviews

MobyRanks are listed below. You can read here for more information about MobyRank.
LynxPlay Time (Jan, 1992)
Was bisher in vielen Umsetzungen der Spielhallenversion für alle möglichen Systeme versucht wurde, fand in der Lynx-Version endlich seinen krönenden Abschluß. Sitzen 3D-Grafiken, satter Motorsound und eine fast hundertprozentige Motivation lassen keine Wünsche offen.
Overall the Amiga version is a most convincing conversion of Hard Drivin' - having the edge on the ST for smoothness and with the added appeal of to its sampled sounds.
Near perfect conversion of the Tengen original. The speed is there, the music, and skidding, complete with sound effects to match. One of the very best racers now available for the ST.
It is slightly jerky but this is only to be expected. Greatly to the programmers credit, every single important game element has been included - right down to the action replay. Once again a Spectrum conversion of an advanced coin-op is pulled off against the odds. First class Spectrum racing.
ZX SpectrumCrash! (Jan, 1990)
An excellent conversion, fast 'n' thrilling and something very different from the rest
Atari STComputer and Video Games (CVG) (Dec, 1989)
A stunning conversion that contains all the features of the arcade game and plays brilliantly. An absolute must for all boy racers.
AmigaThe Games Machine (UK) (Feb, 1990)
Probably one of the most eagerly awaited arcade conversions of the year is fantastically addictive. The Amiga's sound and graphics hardware really make this game shine. Every bit as good as the Spectrum and ST versions reviewed last month. This one game you don't want to miss.
ZX SpectrumThe Games Machine (UK) (Jan, 1990)
If you were worried about the speed of the Spectrum version, forget it! This is just the sort of action-packed game you could do with on Christmas Day. So the sprites are monochromatic, who cares, this version is so playable. Binary Design and Domark have achieved the impossible. They have managed to fit a Ferrari into a Fiesta..
Atari STThe Games Machine (UK) (Jan, 1990)
Originally designed as a professional driving simulator, Hard Drivin' is now fast and furious arcade action all the way. The conversion on all formats is top notch. All speed freaks should have a copy of Hard Drivin' in their garage.
Atari STThe One (Dec, 1989)
Non-drivers can get to grips with it more easily, and while it's obviously no longer such a realistic experience, the coin-op's feel has been recreated authentically. While the graphic definition isn't as high as the coin-op's, and some colour has been lost, its speed (perhaps the most important factor) certainly hasn't suffered. Like its arcade parent, Hard Drivin' won't immediately appeal to everyone - this is a little daunting if you grew up on Chase HQ and Turbo OutRun, but it's ultimately rewarding.
AmigaRaze (Feb, 1991)
  • It is a pity that course times aren't recorded.
  • The course editor will definitely prolong the playing life of this game.
AmigaZero (Feb, 1990)
This is a great driving game with the Phantom Photon giving it an extra twist. However, as Dunc said last month, once you've done it - you've done it.
GenesisRaze (Mar, 1991)
The game has excellent solid 3-D graphics, a tremendous thundering sound tracks and enough playability to keep you hooked. My only gripe is lack of extra courses. With the possibilities of huge cartridges, and the Mega Drive's obvious potential, it seems a wasted opportunity. Games on the Mega Drive shouldn't simply be conversions.
ArcadePower Play (May, 1989)
Normalerweise bin ich kein allzugroßer Fan von Autorenn-Spielen, aber Hard Drivin' hat mich ganz in seinen Bann gezogen. Die grafische Aufmachung ist sehr gut gelungen. Gerade die ausgefüllte 3D-Grafik trägt viel zur Realitätsnähe des Programms bei. Besonders schön ist die Zeitlupenwiederholung. Wer einen Fahrfehler macht und den Wagen zu Schrott fährt, dem wird das noch mal in Zeitlupe vorgeführt. Die Straßenführung ist geschickt gemacht, und knifflige Situationen werden immer mit Fahrkönnen gelöst und nicht mit Glück. Hard Drivin' garantiert durch die Vielzahl der Details, den intelligenten Fahrgegnern und der wunderbaren Hindernisstrecke langen Fahrspaß. Ich kann den packenden Fahrsimulator Hard Drivin' wirklich empfehlen – dafür laß ich jeden Out Run-Automaten stehen.
GenesisGénération 4 (Feb, 1991)
Une bonne adaptation d'un jeu vraiment prenant et très jouable !
Atari STST Format (Jan, 1990)
The long-term interest value of the game is suspect. Two playing tracks are a lot of fun but they become tedious and less challenging in time. This is more noticeable than in the arcades, because without the steering wheel and stick of the arcades much of the tension has been lost.
Spielerisch ist das Ganze einen Tick besser als auf dem ST oder Amiga, da alles etwas schneller ist. Trotzdem hätte aus dem Mega Drive ‘ne ganze Ecke mehr herausgeholt werden können. Ansonsten kann ich von einer 1:1-Umsetzung sprechen, die viel Spaß macht.
Was für mich auf jeden Fall feststeht, findet sich auch bei der Amiga-Version wieder: HARD DRIVIN‘ - ein technisch brillantes Game vermittelt ein superirres Fahrgefühl!
Atari STASM (Aktueller Software Markt) (Dec, 1989)
"Wäre die Steuerung etwas präziser, die Strecken etwas vielfältiger und das Game nicht gar so einfach durchzuspielen, hätte der Mega-Stern hier gestanden!", meinte Torsten. Ich jedenfalls bin der Meinung, daß der Siegeszug dieses Spiels genauso wenig zu bremsen ist, wie meine persönliche Begeisterung.
Atari STZero (Jan, 1990)
Brilliant conversion of a graphically brilliant coin-op. It's great fun for a while, but don't expect it to be the 'most played' game you ever bought.
GenesisSega Force (UK) (Jan, 1992)
I'm unsure about the game's lastability, with only two tracks to choose from. I found boredom setting in after a while, but then it was the game sort of set-up in the coin-op. If you loved that, you'll be happy with this near-perfect conversion.
DOSThe Games Machine (UK) (Apr, 1990)
Obviously, for games of this nature you require a fast machine, definitely over 8MHz. With the right equipment, PC Hard Drivin' can provide more than a few days of entertainment. Worth a purchase.
Amstrad CPCAmstrad Action (Feb, 1990)
Realistic racing of the highest calibre.
ArcadeCommodore User (Mar, 1989)
Hard Drivin' is exactly what its name suggests — difficult. You won't master this quickly, and if you aren't used to driving a car it's going to be very tough for you indeed. But Atari can be proud of themselves for producing a coin-op which really does put you in the driving seat, and that is undeniably a major first.
AmigaRaze (Aug, 1991)
[Budget re-release] The game was originally designed as professional driving simulator, which explains the superb perspective and car control. The novel (in its time) use of 3-D filled polygons adds an element of realism, as opposed to the normal top-down view of games like Super Cars.
AmigaThe One for Amiga Games (Jun, 1991)
[Budget re-release] In this conversion, the juddering cabinet is not really missed that much, while the sensible control system almost manages to make the joystick a reasonable replacement for the wheel.
Atari STThe One for ST Games (Jun, 1991)
[Budget re-release] In this conversion, the juddering cabinet is not really missed that much, while the sensible control system almost manages to make the joystick a reasonable replacement for the wheel.
AmigaTop Secret (Mar, 1992)
Jest to gra typu symulacyjnego, o klasę lepsza od np. "Lombard rally" czy "Toyota Celica GT Rally", z prostego powodu - jest bardziej "naturalna" (jest to niestety bardzo nieodpowiednie słowo). Dzieje się tak dzięki doskonałej, trójwymiarowej grafice, oraz dokładnemu odwzorowaniu reakcji samochodu nie tylko na drodze lecz także w powietrzu.
Atari STRaze (Aug, 1991)
[Budget re-release] The game was originally designed as professional driving simulator, which explains the superb perspective and car control. The novel (in its time) use of 3-D filled polygons adds an element of realism, as opposed to the normal top-down view of games like Super Cars. Even with loads of bugs, the game is still very playable and exhilarating (especially so on the Atari TT on which is runs about five times as fast!).
AmigaZero (Mar, 1990)
All in all though, Hard Drivin' is a fairly good conversion of the coin-op original. Quite a good effort overall though, so (sort of) well done Domark.
Atari STST Action (Jan, 1990)
Domark also boast about new track discs which will have new circuits which I think will improve the game a great deal. On the whole, I think Hard Drivin' is a good coin-up conversion and deserves a place in anyones collection, but even more so with the track discs.
HARD DRIVIN‘ ist ein gutes, brauchbares und interessantes Game, keine Frage. Aber: Die PC-Grafik und der fehlende, beinahe schon obligate „Zusatz-Sound“ (AdLib und Konsorten) führen das DOMARK-Produkt leider nur ins Mittelmaß. Das Game aus England ist leider nicht „u.k.“!
ArcadeAll Game Guide (1998)
One of the more innovative features of the game was the ability to race a phantom racer if you beat a specified time limit in a lap. What made this feature unique was that the phantom racer was actually a recorded replay of the last gamer to set the record on that machine. Cutting edge gameplay, fun special features and dazzlingly realistic graphics made Hard Drivin' an influential arcade hit and an inspiration for such games as Race Drivin' and S.T.U.N. Runner.
Atari STComputer and Video Games (CVG) (Jul, 1991)
Take your high-speed revmobile around two tracks in this close conversion of the Atari coin-op. The graphics aren't bad at all, but the gameplay is really repetitive after about ten minutes play. The simple fact is that two tracks just isn't enough for home product. If the coin-op was your bag, I'd recommend you save up for Hard Drivin 2: Drive Harder. Its track designer and extra circuits make all the difference.
AmigaPower Play (Feb, 1990)
In der Spielhalle ist man mit zwei Mark dabei: Man dreht den Zündschlüssel, tritt die Kupplung, hackt den ersten Gang rein und braust los - ganz wie beim eigenen Auto. Die Simulation, die so ein tolles Fahrgefühl vermittelt, heißt "Hard Drivin'" und wurde von Atari Games in Amerika entwickelt. Für die Amiga-Umsetzung wurde extra ein deutscher Computerkenner bemüht: "Star Wars"-Programmierer Jürgen Friedrichs setzte sich an die Tastatur.
AmigaAmiga Joker (Dec, 1989)
Hard Drivin' ist optisch das exakte Ebenbild des Automaten-Vorbilds. Die Vektorgrafik ist traumhaft schön und blitzschnell, sogar die Zeitlupenwiederholung aus der Vogelperspektive wurde von der Arcade-Maschine auf den Amiga umgesetzt. Nur leider: Die verheerende Steuerung macht alles zunichte! Als große Fans des Tengen-Automaten kullerten uns dicke Tränen aus den Augen, als wir sehen mußten, was aus der wunderbaren Fahrt durch Loopings und Hochgeschwindigkeitsabschnitte geworden ist. Verdammt schade!
GenesisPower Play (Apr, 1991)
Die Umsetzung auf das Mega Drive ist halbwegs gelungen. Alle Feinheiten auf der Strecke sind vorhanden und der Computergegner Phamtom Photon fährt immer noch so fies. Die Grafik ist allerdings recht langsam, der Sound kommt dem Automaten nahe. Leider gibt es nur zwei Strecken und die Steuerung reagiert über das Joypad sehr nervös.
Zunächst ist eine Ladung Frust angesagt, bis man durch fleißiges Üben mit der sensiblen Steuerung klarkommt. Wer bei den ersten Fahrversuchen kaum ein paar Meter heil zurücklegen kann, soll nicht verzweifeln. Nach einer Weile kommt man besser in Fahrt und hat seinen Spaß an dem Programm. Langfristig ist die Spielmotivation allerdings nicht berauschend, denn es gibt nur zwei Strecken. Wer gut am Steuer ist und selbst den Looping meistert, kann eigentlich nur auch auf Punkte spielen. Wenn Ihnen die anderen Rennspiele zu unrealistisch sind, sollten Sie sich »Hard Drivin‘« aber auf jeden Fall ansehen. Es ist allen Schönheitsfehlern zum Trotz eines der interessantesten Programme dieses Genres und einer der wenigen Titel, die die Bezeichnung Fahr-»Simulation« verdienen. Der Spielspaß ist merklich höher als bei Spectrum Holobytes langatmigen Konkurrenzprodukt »Vene«, das wir ebenfalls in diesem Buch vorstellen.
LynxGamePro (US) (Nov, 1991)
Hard Drivin's no lemon, but it's got its kinks. The steering controls are sluggish, and the 4-speed automatic transmission, which requires pressing both Option buttons to use, has too many moves for one thumb. But if you don't mind working while you drive, take Hard Drivin' for a test spin!
GenesisVideo Games (Mar, 1991)
Hard Drivin' ist keines der üblichen Rennspiele, bei denen nur schnelle Reaktionen gefragt sind. Bei dieser Fahrsimulation geht es vergleichsweise realistisch zu. Vor allem kommt es darauf an, sich mit der Steuerung vertraut zu machen. Bei der neuen Mega-Drive-Version sind im Prinzip alle Features des Vorbilds zu finden. Doch leider ist die 30-Grafik auf dem Mega Drive weder flott noch flüssig, so daß der Spaß mangels eines guten Fahrgefühls merklich leidet, Zwei verschiedene Strecken sind außerdem etwas wenig, um langfristig bei Laune zu bleiben.
Megadrive Hard Drivin' practically is Amiga Hard Drivln'! Even some of the old bugs are present and the sound is actually a lot worse. The sampled ignition has been replaced with a lacking synthesized effort and the car's engine sound more like a flatulent elephant! Lastability is this game's main problem, though. One game is all that's required to see everything that this game has to offer and after that all interest in the game vanishes with a spectacular suddenness. Also, the handling of the car is completely unrealistic, and that realism was the whole point of the arcade machine. If you're a racing fan spend some money on the coin-op version (or better still, Race Drivin') - this simply isn't value for money.
LynxPower Play (Nov, 1991)
Nach dem guten "Checkered Flag" gibt das Lynx erneut Gas. Diesmal hakt's allerdings im Getriebe: Spielerisch wurde das Computervorbild zwar kompromißlos adaptiert, doch bei der Geschwindigkeit (Strecke und Autos werden in ausgefüllter 3-D-Vektorgrafik dargestellt) muß man Abstriche machen.
GenesisMean Machines (Jan, 1991)
Hard Drivin' worked well as a coin-op - the positive feedback steering wheel, realistic clutch controls and enclosed cabinet made for an enjoyable driving experience. However, on the Megadrive much of the coin-op's tactile appeal has been stripped away, exposing what is really a rather basic racing game. The 3D graphics are smooth, fast and impressive, and the game is certainly enjoyable for a while. But once you've mastered the tracks and beaten the Phantom Photon (which doesn't take a vast amount of practice) it all gets rather dull and pointless. Players who loved the coin-op will doubtless enjoy the action, but it won't take long before the novelty wears off.
GenesisAll Game Guide (1999)
Simply put, this is a game that shouldn't have been attempted on the Genesis -- if you want a real polygon driving game, pick up Virtua Racing, which has a special chip on its cartridge to help push the geometry around. Shame on you, Atari...
GenesisSega Does (May 22, 2017)
Despite Hard Drivin‘s clear innovations and despite the fact that I appreciate the content that is there, I can’t in good conscience recommend anyone purchase this for more than a dollar. Why? I beat the game in less than fifteen minutes without too much trouble. And while those fifteen minutes were a surreal trip into a chunky pixelated world of ages past, they were still just fifteen minutes. If only I could have driven you harder, Hard Drivin‘. If only.
40 (Jan 26, 2009)
You have to play for a while to grow to like it, while at the same time the fun only lasts a few minutes. I guess most of the problems could've been solved by a bigger cartridge size – but as it is, this game uses only two MEGs, making it one of the smallest games in the Genesis library! Tengen tried to address that problem in a later game. This, however, is sadly just so much wasted potential, still likable in way, but not really entertaining in the long run.
Noch schlimmer als die Animation wiegt die miserable Steuerung, bei der man trotz des eingebauten Steuerkreuzes das Gefühl hat, eine schlecht installierte Maus zu bedienen. Schlickerfahrten und Crashs sind die Folge, das Einhalten des Zeitlimits ist folgerichtig nicht möglich. Schade drum: Hier wurde eine gute Chance vertan!
LynxAll Game Guide (2007)
Whatever Hard Drivin' is, it certainly isn't a realistic driving simulator. In real life, you don't collide with cars when you're a full car length away, and you don't bounce back a hundred feet or so when you crash into a car. Most of all, you never pass straight through another car. This game really isn't worth your time unless you're a diehard racing fan looking for a complete collection.
LynxneXGam (2002)
Versteht mich nicht falsch, auf den ersten Blick war ich wirklich begeistert und dachte schon daran, einen weiteren Tophit auf dem Lynx vor mir zu haben. Doch diese lieblose Konvertierung mit zahllosen dicken Schnitzern ist weit davon entfernt auf Atari's Handheld eine gute Figur zu machen. Der Rat kann daher nur lauten - Finger weg!
LynxST Format (Dec, 1992)
The graphics are pretty, the idea's good, but it's all completely screwed up by the control system. Hard Drivin' is not a good game. Avoid like the plague.
Commodore 64Zzap! (Dec, 1990)
About as much fun to drive as half a C5 with half a battery. Even the AA couldn't rescue this old wreck. That's all you need to know.
GenesisThe Video Game Critic (Jan 08, 2001)
This archaic racer is barely playable today, but it was pretty amazing for its time. Hard Drivin' was the first arcade game with first-person, 3D polygon graphics, and it was released long before Virtua Racing took the arcades by storm. The game includes a standard race track and an elaborate "stunt" track, complete with a ramp, loop-to-loop, and banked turns. Just surviving the stunt course is a major challenge. But unlike Virtua Racing, Hard Drivin' has NOT aged well. Its framerate is agonizingly slow, and the cars look like ugly boxes. Sparse scenery includes streets signs, small buildings, and other traffic. An unnecessary instrument panel takes up a large chunk of the screen. At least the instant-replays are somewhat amusing. Hard Drivin' isn't very enjoyable, but it is interesting to see how racing games have evolved over the years.
LynxDefunct Games (Jul 24, 2004)
Hard Drivin' is an understatement. Impossible Drivin' is more like it. This game is so bad that I can't bring myself to say anything more about it! In fact, this may very well be the worst Racing Game EVER. This is the complete opposite of Gran Turismo 3.