Out Run (PC-Engine)

out-run-japanI figured it was time to pick a game in a genre that isn’t in my comfort zone. I’ve never been the biggest fan of racing games other than Mario Kart. The same goes for sports games. But the point of this site is to review all the games for the TurboGraFx-16 and PC-Engine, so I might as well start cracking a few of those out.

I’ve played Out Run in an arcade once and a good friend speaks highly of it. It was released on the PC-E but oddly not here for the TG-16. I’ll be honest. The game is a home version of an arcade game, and it’s a racing game. A pretty straight-forward racing game at that with not much going on. So this might be the shortest review this far on this site.

An arcade ad for Out Run.

An arcade ad for Out Run.

Usually in racing games you have opponents to race against. Out Run says screw that and lets see how far you can cruise in a set amount of time. The amount of time you get depends on the difficulty setting. On easy you get 80 seconds, 75 on normal and 70 on hard. Of course there’s less traffic on the road on the easier settings. I was able to get to stage 3 on easy. The game is about memorization. You have to remember every turn to be able to make the checkpoint to get more time. If you don’t make a checkpoint, it’s game over. Simple as that. After awhile the road will split. This represents a new stage starting. There are quite a few paths you can take.

As long as you are moving your score will continue to rise. You’ll soon see your score rise over a million but you need at least 4 million to make it on the high score list. I sucked and couldn’t do it. You have two buttons, gas and break. You can switch gears once to reach a top speed of 293 mph. Be careful, if you switch gears to early or late you’ll burn out slowing you down. I found switching gears around the 150 mph mark was perfect. Also, don’t start in second gear. It takes a lot longer to accelerate. Crashing is fun as the car flips around across the highway. It doesn’t show the characters in the car as it flips. Maybe they fell out?



The music is one of the things that stands out in Out Run and the PC-Engine ‘s versions weren’t that bad. Not the greatest but passable for the time. Magical Sound Shower is a series staple that a lot love and this version doesn’t disappoint. A neat feature is when the game starts you get to pick between three songs represented by someone changing a car radio. That’s about all there is to it. This version is nothing special and gets kind of boring after while. I’m sure the newer versions are better but you’re not missing anything if you haven’t played it on the PC-Engine.

Final Verdict:

  • Nice graphics for a game in 1987 on a home console
  • Magical Sound Shower is an awesome
  • Gets old after an hour so, at least for me
  • Good home port of an arcade game for 1987

Score: 2/5





2 thoughts on “Out Run (PC-Engine)

  1. I had Turbo Outrun on Amstrad CPC 464 snd loved it at the time. A little dated now of course but was definitely a trail blazer for later modern driving games of this sort I think. Good job.

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