OutRun Europa

OutRun Europa - Game Gear, Master System, Amiga, Atari ST, Commodore 64, Amstrad CPC, ZX Spectrum, (1991)


OutRun Europa was licensed by Sega to US Gold and developed by Probe, the same folks behind the computer ports of OutRun and Turbo OutRun. It was never officially released in Japan. Out of all the spin-offs, this one has fallen the farthest from the tree. You chase criminals through Europe, switching vehicles at every stage. On the first you ride a motorcycle, then hop onto a jet ski, a Porsche, a motorboat, and finally you get to drive the classic OutRun Ferrari.

There’s substantially more car combat than even Battle OutRun. In addition to a timer, you also have a “Shield“ meter that indicates how much damage has been done to your vehicle. There are also numerous “Boost“ items to obtain.

Sega Master System

The motorcycle levels play like some bad Road Rash clone, in that you can punch other bikers and cause them to explode (!) and the cops will try to pull you over. The jet ski scenes are even more action packed, as you attempt to fight helicopters with rockets. And then the driving stages are about what you’d expect, though you do get involved in a shootout with the main criminal at the end. It’s quite long compared to the old games – a single stage is substantially longer than the entirety of a game of OutRun.

Amiga

Perhaps since OutRun Europa originated on home computers, the quality of the product is far better than the ports of the previous games. Even the Spectrum and Amstrad versions, while choppy, are playable, while the Amiga (pictured above) is by far the best looking. The Master System (pictured below right) and Game Gear games are identical to each other outside of screen size, with the latter being the only version released in North America. 

Commodore 64

The 8-bit computer ports are missing the mid-level branching paths, where you could choose a longer but easier path, or a shorter but harder one. The Commodore 64 version has music by Jeroen Tel, while the Amiga, Master System and Game Gear ports have a completely different soundtrack by Matt Furniss. Both are excellent.

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