Road Runner

Atari 2600

Review by Kevin Oleniacz



Graphics: 9

Sound: 7

Gameplay: 8

Overall: 8

roadrunner.gif (2721 bytes)Not many popular cartoon characters entered the videogame medium, but speeding the Road Runner onto the home screen resulted in an entertaining game.

As the Road Runner, you travel left along a scrolling road while eluding the persistent Wile E. Coyote. Eat bird seed and steel shot, which is scattered across the road. Wile E. is armed with a magnet, and he will gain a few steps if you do go for the shot. Each pile of seed eaten will increase your score in 100 point increments (up to 1000) and give YOU a short burst in speed.

In round one, you dodge oncoming trucks while keeping several paces ahead of Wile E. In round two, you'll have to deal with stationary land mines and employ timely jumping over crevices. In later rounds you'll have to avoid falling rocks, cannon shots, and a super quick coyote on rocket skates or strapped to a rocket. The road also widens, narrows, and branches out for even more variety.

The pace is fast, with a steady progression of difficulty. The graphics are small, but all objects and characters are recognizeable. There isn't a large variety of sounds, but they meet the expectations of the system. The screen displays an illusion of parallax scrolling (!) which is unusual for the 2600. The only major complaint I have is that the mostly barren desert background constitutes a great portion of the screen. This wouldn't be so noticeable if there were some animated creatures blended in, such as snakes or rodents scurrying around. Nevertheless, in spite of its cutesy theme, gamers young and old will find this quite a challenge.

TIP: Wile E always follows directly behind the Road Runner. Bonus points can be easily earned by leading him into an oncoming truck or a land mine.


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Last updated: Wednesday, December 10, 2003 02:31 PM