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User Reviews

Perhaps the CPC's greatest racing game Amstrad CPC Martin Smith (71291)
Nice game for PC-Engine consoles! TurboGrafx-16 Gustavo Henrique dos Santos (113)

Our Users Say

Platform Votes Score
Amiga 6 3.4
Amstrad CPC Awaiting 5 votes...
Arcade Awaiting 5 votes...
Atari ST Awaiting 5 votes...
Commodore 64 Awaiting 5 votes...
DOS 6 2.6
MSX Awaiting 5 votes...
SEGA Saturn Awaiting 5 votes...
TurboGrafx-16 Awaiting 5 votes...
ZX Spectrum Awaiting 5 votes...
Combined User Score 12 3.0

Critic Reviews

MobyRanks are listed below. You can read here for more information about MobyRank.
Commodore 64Zzap! (Nov, 1989)
Superlative, high-speed, off-road action setting the incredibly fast pace for the rest to follow this Xmas.
Commodore 64Your Commodore (Jan, 1990)
Power Drift is a very good conversion, and as long as it keeps it's head above the Christmas quagmire, it's quality should show in the form of a high chart position.
Commodore 64The Games Machine (UK) (1989)
Playing similarly to Commodore Buggy Boy but with fast plentiful 3-D graphics somehow crammed into a single load, Power Drift is worth every penny.
Amstrad CPCAmstrad Action (Dec, 1989)
Mould-breaking racing fun!
ZX SpectrumYour Sinclair (Dec, 1991)
[Budget re-release] The arcade version of Power Drift bucked like a particularly peeved, hydraulic bronco and it was a stomach-churning experience. Its roller-coaster racing circuits were positively evil and while this conversion may not have the graphic grace of the arcade, it's hot-wired the gameplay, driven it away and parked all 25 tracks onto tape. All in one load! Hurrah!
AmigaThe Games Machine (UK) (Dec, 1989)
Like any good racing game the urge to weave between the opposition and hit the front spot is high but actually doing it is something completely different, particularly bearing in mind the tight corners and bumps that make Power Drift such an energetic game. Scraping in at third is usually satisfying enough so that the next circuit can be tackled - and with 25 tracks in total it'll be a long time before you've tried them all. It'll be longer still before you complete them all in one game and claim the Power Drift trophy - so just make sure you don't waste any time getting hold of a copy!
AmigaAmiga Format (Dec, 1989)
Wonderful stuff. As challenging and as addictive as you would expect from a hit coin-op but with much more gameplay depth than usual. A first-class racing game with all the essential ingredients to keep you in the driving seat.
TurboGrafx-16The Games Machine (UK) (Aug, 1990)
Graphics are highly colourful and fairly detailed. Track/scenery moves jerkily but high speed means you only really notice this when watching someone else play. Snatches of speech and raucous effects provide suitably energetic backing to the action. Although visually it's not quite as good as Activision's Amiga conversion, playability's high - it's the best racing game currently available for the PC Engine.
TurboGrafx-16GameFan Magazine (Dec, 1992)
A PC Engine classic that still holds up well today. Power Drift is a close translation of the arcade original considering the PC Engine can't do any fancy hardware scaling or rotation. This game offers clear digitized voice and provides a tough challenge making this game a must have!
AmigaZero (Dec, 1989)
With the above tiny reservation taken into account, Power Drift is still an excellent conversion. The graphics and spirit of the original have been captured well for the Amiga release, so you should definitely jump in your buggy and head for the local software shop as fast as your little wheels will carry you. It's a stonker of a game.
Commodore 64Commodore Force (Aug, 1993)
The question is, how could the thrills of the breathtaking original be squeezed into just 64K? Well, obviously they couldn't, but 64 Power Drift is a valiant attempt all the same. It's fast, and there's some pleasing stomach-churning hills around. A good solid racer and no mistake.
Atari STThe Games Machine (UK) (Jan, 1990)
Although it has the high presentation and colourful arcade look of the Amiga, the ST uses fewer colours, less detail and moves slower. Sound effects are weaker and samples a touch distorted, but overall audio is good.
Atari STASM (Aktueller Software Markt) (Jan, 1990)
Für die Umsetzung dieses Smashhits auf den Atari ST wurde übrigens dasselbe Programmierteam beauftragt, das uns schon die 1-A-Amiga-Fassung bescherte, nämlich ZZKJ (Code), Uncle Art (Musi), Saul (Grafik). Die Jungens haben echt gute Arbeit geleistet, steht die Atari-Fassung der Amiga-Version doch in nichts nach. Die Grafik bewegt sich immer noch so schnell (aber auch so ruckhaft), und auch die Farbenvielfalt kann sich sehen lassen (16 an der Zahl). Besonders beeindruckt hat mich allerdings die Sprachausgabe, die absolut klar rüberkommt, Musikmäßig müssen natürlich die leistungsbedingten Abstriche gemacht werden. Eines möchte ich jedoch noch klarstellen: POWERDRIFT kommt weder auf 8-noch auf 16-Bit an das Original von SEGA ‘ran, ist ja auch logisch, denn der Automat wurde allein für dieses Spiel konzipiert. Doch nun habe ich genug geschwafelt, jetzt ist Feierabend. Dies ist ein ASM-HIT und basta. Tschüß, bis dann..
POWERDRIFT ist die bisher beste Umsetzung eines SEGA-Games aus der Spielhalle. Macht weiter so, die User werden‘s Euch danken! POWERDRIFT: Get it!
Atari STST Format (Jan, 1990)
What makes this more appealing than other driving games is the originality of the course and vehicle. There's been so many standard racing games that finding one where you drive a buggy across a whacky course is positively refreshing. It's impossible to convey the thrill of seeing one of Powerdrift's enormous log hills looming up, or the excitement of facing a gruelling bout of turns through a forest of roadsigns, but these are exactly what make Powerdrift fun to play. [Pages 62/64]
Hours of racing thrills in what is surely the best Power Drift conversion the Amiga is capable of.
AmigaAmiga Action (Dec, 1989)
Converting such an excellent arcade game must have been a nightmare for Activision, and it has to be said that they have done a great job. Powerdrift is as close to the arcade as we could hoped for. I think the programmers may have tried a little too hard to make it a close conversion, and therefore the game has suffered somewhat. The track is far too flickery and is poorly constructed, becoming a little unclear at times. Well tried, but out of the Amiga's league, I'm afraid.
ZX SpectrumYour Sinclair (Jan, 1990)
If you don't know about Power Drift you have just returned from a month holiday on Jupiter. I mean, it's been a big hit in the arcades, it's been emblazoned on our front cover, and we've even given you an exclusive level as a playable demo! (Hello, I've just returned from a three month holiday on Jupiter! Reader's voice) Erm, right! Power Drift is a conversion of the Sega arcade hit of the same name. It's a rolling road racing game in which you race a sort of dune buggy against 12 other competitors on different courses. There are five main courses to choose from and then five stages to each course, so in effect you've got 20-odd different tracks! Oh, and it's been programmed by the people responsible for WEC Le Mans so you won't be surprised to hear that it's one slick and smooth-scrolling racing game.
ZX SpectrumCrash! (Dec, 1989)
A tough conversion admirably and playably accomplished!
Commodore 64Commodore Format (Dec, 1991)
Great the first time round and if you missed it then, you musn't miss it now. A classic racing game.

Note: The 41% score was written in error and the corrected score was given in a later issue
A decent conversion but you need a mega expensive, top-of-the-range machine to really appreciate it, and the price is a major putoff.
Commodore 6464'er (Feb, 1990)
Power Drift ist ein abwechslungsreiches, mit ansprechenden Details gestaltetes Racing-Game. Die Grafik ist schnell und witzig und überzeugt durch horizontale und vertikale Animation. Sound und Geschwindigkeit sorgen für Spannung, die C64-Version ist absolut gelungen.
Commodore 64Commodore User (Nov, 1989)
Powerdrift 64 is much superior to the Amiga version. It plays with all the fast paced frenzy of the arcade original. Given the choice I sure know which version I'd choose.
ZX SpectrumSinclair User (Dec, 1989)
So, Power Drift wins in the end. It's playability wins through over some dodgy features. A triumph over adversity.
AmigaAmiga Joker (Dec, 1989)
Das Spiel bietet prima Grafik, schnelle Animation und gute Spielbarkeit. Allerdings ist eine kurze Eingewöhnungszeit erforderlich, ehe man an der ungewohnten Steuerung Gefallen findet. Aber dann kommt Freude auf: Man mag nicht mehr von dem Game lassen, ehe man nicht alle 27 (relativ kurzen) Rundkurse durchfahren hat. Die einfallsreichen Rampen und Hindernisse, zusammen mit der tollen Sprachausgabe und den gelungenen FX machen das Spiel zu einem echten Renner!
AmigaThe One (Nov, 1989)
Conversion-wise, Power Drift holds its own - it's arguably about as close to the coin-op as the Amiga will allow, both technically and in terms of recreating the original's feel. It's a shame that ultimately the fun is likely to be short-lived.
ArcadePower Play (Feb, 1989)
Man kann ja die Nase darüber rümpfen, daß Power Drift in spielerischer Hinsicht nichts Neues bietet, aber das verflixte Ding macht einen Heidenspaß. Die Entwickler von Sega haben sich wieder mal auf frappierende, superschnelle 3D-Grafik verlassen. Wer glaubte, daß der „Out Run“-Automat das Nonplusultra in Sachen Autorennen bietet, wird bei Power Drift erst mal ehrfurchtsvoll schlucken. Die haarsträubenden Berg-und-Tal-Strecken und die vielen Computergegner sorgen für ein tolles Spielgefühl, das aber nicht ewig anhält. Irgendwann sieht man sich auch an den schönsten 3D-Effekten einmal satt.
Commodore 64ASM (Aktueller Software Markt) (Nov, 1989)
POWERDRIFT ist die bisher beste Umsetzung eines SEGA-Games aus der Spielhalle. Macht weiter so, die User werden‘s Euch danken! POWERDRIFT: Get it!
Atari STST Action (Jan, 1990)
Many doubted that it could be done, and so Activision entrusted the rather daunting task of converting the Power Drift coin-up to their best team, and the result has surprised even the staunchest of critics. The arcade game has the biggest and fastest-moving sprites ever, and the Power Drift team have made few concessions with the sixteen-bit version - at times there are more than sixty sprites on screen. The ST has really been stretched to the limits here, and so occasionally the machine struggles to run the game smoothly. Therefore, the blitter-chip option, for those lucky enough to have the chip, is a welcomed inclusion. Exciting race action at its best, confused at times by the amount of sprites on screen, but generally a highly commendable job of a seemingly impossible conversion.
TurboGrafx-16Tilt (Jul, 1990)
Il est impossible de réussir la conversion d'un jeu d'arcade aussi impressionnant. Sans être totalement convaincante, cette version est largement supérieure aux conversions sur micro. On retrouve en partie les formidables sensations du programme original et ce n'est déjà pas si mal. Un programme difficile, mais très excitant.
Atari STZero (Jan, 1990)
At the end of the day, Powerdrift (the ST conversion) seemed to be an exercise in emulating the 'prowess' of the arcade machine rather than an attempt to re-create the gameplay.
TurboGrafx-16ASM (Aktueller Software Markt) (May, 1990)
POWER DRIFT spielt sich allerdings hervorragend, die Steuerung ist sehr direkt, Schaltungsfehler sind aufgrund von nur zwei Gängen ausgeschlossen. Der Sound ist nicht besonders peppig, die Effekte und Fahrgeräusche können sich jedoch sehen lassen. Tja, das ist wohl knapp am Hit vorbei!
More of an interpretation of the original coin-op than a direct conversion attempt. This pays dividends in the gameplay as the road layouts are far more playable - particularly the absence of the crossovers. Animation is competent in the C64 version - making for an absorbing race game.
AmigaCommodore User (Nov, 1989)
Finally we see the first of Activision’s biggies for Chrimbo, a conversion of an extremely fast race machine. So how has cartie-racing legend Power Drift fallen into the 68000? Not very well, as I expected. The problem lies with the machine. When an arcade programmer has an idea, he is given the hardware to carry that idea out. No matter how good a programmer is, the Amiga 500 hardware is not going to improve, and so the new breed of arcade games are too difficult to carry across. Powerdrift is one of them.
AmigaZzap! (Jan, 1990)
With its neat presentation Power Drift appears to be a good conversion. But as you get to harder, more graphically complex levels the graphics and gameplay start to get messy and confusing, spoiling the playability somewhat. Fans of the coin-op might appreciate the programmer's bravery, but others will wonder why he didn't keep it as graphically simple as the C64 game.
If the C64 conversion is competent and playable, then its 16 bit counterpart is the opposite. Graphically and sonically its all you could want, but as a piece of programming it's a dog's dinner. The challenge rapidly dissipates when you realise the game is unplayable in places. At certain points the track just becomes a mess, leaving you to wonder which way to turn. The result is confusion and lost time. Take it away from me.
AmigaThe One for Amiga Games (Nov, 1991)
[Budget re-release] A good conversion that proves to be a bit uncontrollable at times.
ArcadeCommodore User (Oct, 1988)
I can't really fault Sega on this driving game: it's well put together, looks good, plays nicely and sounds great. It's just that it's not really tremendously innovative or varied. Even if it was twenty or thirty pee per play, I figure the thrills and spills would soon wear off fairly shortly. At a quid a shot, I just can't see Power Drift making as big an impact as say Out Run did in its time.
Atari STThe One for ST Games (Nov, 1991)
A good conversion that proves to be a bit uncontrollable at times.
TurboGrafx-16Power Play (Aug, 1990)
Respekt vor der technischen Glanzleistung der Programmierer. Die 3D-Grafik bei den verschiedenen Berg- und Talkursen ist erstaunlich flott und fließend. Gelegentlich bleiben zwar Flackereien nicht aus, doch sie stören den teilweise etwas unübersichtlichen und hektischen Spielfluß kaum. Wer das Arcade-Original mochte, wird mit der Umsetzung zufrieden sein.
SEGA SaturnVideo Games (Apr, 1998)
Zuerst möchte ich hier mal meinen, ersten Eindrücke als damaliger Fan des Automatenoriginals schildern: “Was, so hat das Teil wirklich vor acht Jahren ausgesehen?“. Eigentlich ist die nostalgische Buggy-Hatz über bucklige Rennpisten doch ganz lieb und nett gewesen - wie sie mir auch in der alten PC-Engine-Konvertierung im Gedächtnis blieb. Trotzdem wollten sich bei dieser Pixelorgie der Gefühle weder rechte Spannung noch Arcade-Feeling bei mir einstellen. Für den modern eingestellten 32-Bit-Fahrer wird einfach zu wenig Abwechslung, unübersichtliche Kurse und eine schreckliche Oldie-Grafik geboten. Hätte Sega wenigstens ein zusätzliches Spiel mit draufgepackt, wäre das Gesamturteil vielleicht nicht ganz so schlecht ausgefallen. Hardcore-Fans der Arcade-Maschine werden trotzdem mit der 1:1-Umsetzung zufrieden sein.
AmigaAmiga Power (May, 1991)
All the arcade's tracks, characters, and secret features. The graphics can get very confusing, and the gameplay isn't really that close to the original. A good stab at a very difficult conversion, but not quite good enough.
Amstrad CPCThe Games Machine (UK) (Jan, 1990)
The driver portraits on the Amstrad selection screen scroll horizontally. They're much larger than on other versions so only five can fit onscreen at once. Unfortunately, the portraits, like the poor animated cars, jerky road and just about everything in the game, are gaudy and very blocky. The music's quite good but effects are just a dull roar and the occasional ping.
AmigaPower Play (Jan, 1990)
Das konnte ja nicht gutgehen: Der Power Drift-Spielautomat bietet atemberaubende 3D-Grafik dank eines teuren Spezial-Chips. Selbst ein Amiga kann mit solchen Hardware-Tricks nicht dienen und bei Power Drift hängt der Spielspaß von der Schnelligkeit der Grafik ab. Obwohl sich die Programmierer viel Mühe gegeben haben, spielt sich die Amiga-Umsetzung schlapp. Das 3D ist so ruckartig, daß man kaum vernünftig steuern kann. Je mehr Grafik dargestellt werden muß, desto eher kommt das Programm beim Berechnen sichtlich ins Schwitzen (und der Wagen ins Schleudern). Power Drift sieht hübsch aus, doch das schlichte Spielprinzip und die langsame Grafik ruinieren viel.
DOSTilt (Sep, 1990)
Après ses versions ST et Amiga, Power Drift ne mérite pas votre attention. Cette fameuse course de buggies issue des salles d'arcade compte beaucoup de défauts.
ArcadeYour Sinclair (Jan, 1989)
It feels good and plays well and if you enjoyed the previous racing games then you'll enjoy this. If you like to get your kicks in a little more realistic fashion, then...
ArcadeCrash! (Mar, 1989)
Power Drift is a very competent game and great fun to play, especially in the panicky moments when you're roaring towards a tight 90° bend and you can't find the brake pedal. I actually prefer Taito's Continental Circuit, but this ain't half bad either.