Wednesday, May 17, 2017

8-Bit Encyclopaedia: Motor City Patrol



There's no disappointment as bitter as potential unfulfilled. A game that starts out as a breath of fresh air only to quickly stagnate. To borrow a phrase, a crappy game will always be a crappy game. Ikari Warriors is steaming garbage from "Press Start" to "Game Over." With little expected, Ikari's failure means little.

Motor City Patrol, surprisingly enough, starts with promise. Its "drive around a city completing tasks" gameplay makes it a spiritual forerunner to Rockstar Games' Grand Theft Auto series. Developed by Source Research and Development and released in 1992 by Matchbox (yes, the toy car people), Motor City Patrol doesn't boast a stellar pedigree. Source R and D's only other games are the infamously bad Noah's Ark (also released by Matchbox) and a Gameboy puzzler called The Pyramids of Ra.

But once Motor City Patrol gets revving, we see a game with a decent handle of what the NES allows. The graphics, as exemplified by the title logo in the header, are surprisingly rich. The controls are responsive and tight. The plot is simple enough: the player controls a police car which must patrol the city, stopping speeders, thieves and criminals along the way. Pressing Select brings up a map of the city which shows where the criminals are. If a criminal gets too cheeky, pressing B fires your police sidearm out the car window. Nabbing criminals earns the player points which can be used to upgrade their patrol car.

Out patrolin'...
...and checkin' the map.
To "win," the player must patrol 7 days in each of the city's 5 precincts. However, accidentally arresting innocent citizens or letting too many law-breakers escape earns the player a warning. 5 warnings, or accidentally shooting innocent motorists, ends the game. Crashing the car into too many obstacles (but strangely enough, not cars) will also end the game. To neutralize any warnings and damage to your car, 16 "stolen items," aka flashing chotchkies, are scattered through the player's patrol route. Collecting them all will reset the player's "warnings" and car damage to zero. These are vital in the later stages of the game.

That is, of course, assuming you can play to the later stages without dying of boredom first. Because Motor City Patrol is a high-priced sportscar without a road to drive.

Precinct 1 - The Financial District

Day 1

The first day in the Financial District eases players into a cops' life. The map is simplistic, marked with buildings around which the car must patrol. Speeders and thieves occasionally pop up on the city map (in red and yellow, respectively). It's a joy to flash the cherries and chase truants. Once found, obstructing criminals with the lights flashing will bring them to justice. At the end of the "day" (here 2 minutes of real time) the chief assesses points and warnings depending on your performance.

The day done, you pull into the police garage. Here you can spend any points on tricked-out steering, top speed, etc, as well as repair any (inevitable) damage to you cruiser.

Day 2

Okay, so it's more patrolling, more speeders, more thieves, and more time. There's still a strange joy in speeding around the map, flashing the police lights. But, dang, do you have to press select a lot to bring up the map. It's starting to feel like you spend more time looking at the map than actually playing the game.

Day 3

Uh... more speeders? How many truants live in the financial district? Day 3 changes game mechanics slightly by interrupting your patrol with an APB for a big-time criminal. Except the game mechanic of catching a "big-time criminal" is the same as catching petty thieves: put the lights on and obstruct the offending car. A special screen congratulates you collar, but then it's back to the (literally) endless parade of speeders. Did I mention day three is a minute longer than day 2, which was a minute longer than day 1? And damn, my thumb is sore from constantly having to press select and check the map.

And I hope you didn't fully upgrade your patrol car's speed and handling, because past the first upgrade, it becomes an uncontrollable death missile.

Day 4

Oh my god, please, no more speeders! No more speeders! But that's it. By day 3 of Precinct 1, Motor City Patrol has played all its cards. The maps (generally) become more complex from precinct to precinct and each day requires a longer patrol, but otherwise, the game doesn't deviate one damn bit. Worse, the maps for Precincts 3 and 4 are exactly the same! Constantly pressing select to check the map becomes a chore, a constant reminder of time's ceaseless march and the meaninglessness of everything.

Finishing 7 days in all 5 precincts would require over 3 hours of real time, all without saves or continues. Motor City Patrol's endless repetition quickly becomes a lesser form of torture. Look at a successful game like Super Mario Bros. 3. SMB3 uses its first world to establish gameplay tropes (running, jumping, power-ups) and then spends the next 7 worlds subverting those rules to create challenge and fun. Motor City Patrol, on the other hand, sets expectations in the first three levels and then keeps to its pattern without deviation.

Motor City Patrol plays more like a demo or proof of concept than an actual, finished NES title. It seems like the devs came up with a novel (for the time) mechanic, and then, instead of asking "how can we push this to its limits?" they simply slapped Matchbox's name on it and called it day.

Similar "drive-around-accomplishing-missions" NES titles such as Rare's Who Framed Roger Rabbit, Bandai's Dick Tracy and Mindscape's Mad Max, find similar shortcomings. Roger Rabbit and Dick Tracy compensate by favoring side-scrolling missions over driving. Perhaps the NES's limitations made a Grand Theft Auto-styled game impossible.

...But perhaps not.

ROM City Rampage

In June of 2015 indie game devs Vblank Entertainment released a faux 8-bit GTA homage for PC and WiiWare entitled Retro City Rampage.  Retro City's mechanics mirror GTA: a ne'er-do-well wanders tough streets, making cash by performing tasks of questionable legality. Rival criminals, cops and pedestrians are all fair game. Retro City started its development life as a NES homebrew. Even after switching to more powerful hardware, those 8-bit roots show in the game's pixelated graphics and sprite-based animations. Not to mention the many NES easter eggs hidden among its graphical assets.

Normally, referencing the NES on a WiiWare/Steam game wouldn't merit mention. However, hidden in Retro City Rampage's code is a fully-functioning NES ROM. An arcade within Retro City Rampage allows players to play this 100% NES version of the game, called, ROM City Rampage. In fact, the ROM Data can even be extracted from the game and plugged into any NES emulator.



Even in its prototype version, without any "mission" functionality, ROM City Rampage is 1000 times more fun than Motor City Patrol could ever hope to be. ROM City is bright and colorful in a way Motor City Patrol's precise grey tones don't even approach. The ability to enter and exit cars and the presence of pedestrians in ROM City add layers upon layers of depth. ROM City is a NES sandbox to explore and play in. Motor City Patrol is, comparatively and functionally, a minecart on rails. Playing Motor City and ROM City back-to-back makes you ache for what Source Research and Development could have achieved if only they'd put in the time and money. Armed with an MM5 memory chip--the Rolls Royce of NES chipsets--and another year of development, Motor City Patrol could have been a late-cycle NES gem. Like Esper Dream 2 to Secret of Mana, Motor City Patrol could have pioneered a new genre of game as predecessor to GTA.

Coulda, shoulda, woulda.

Instead, Motor City Patrol is all style and no substance. It is a great game wasted, a wonderful gameplay mechanic wandering repetitive, empty streets without any real  purpose.

33 comments:

  1. waoooo http://www.keithisgood.com/

    ReplyDelete
  2. The particular e-casino gaming applications might be most preferred mmorpgs on this planet and many citizens are works typically the gambling gaming applications every day. There are various online casino websites online of which a little websites tend to be fool web pages, so there is truly a top web pages for yourself knowning that may be the rolet online. This is actually a right online site education and then workers both of them, for the reason that beginning can easily discover it again simply and therefore the specialist will have this by way of a real income. Very to find out more with regards to the indokasino338, click the link to check out their web site https://theelale.wixsite.com/mysite/post/improve-knowledge-about-baccarat-online .

    ReplyDelete
  3. Most people are trying to find for one greatest gambling online webpage, yet somehow there's a lot of gain a advantage web pages which means that rrndividuals are too ashamed to assist you to find these guys. However right now there's an easy internet site that enables you to choose a best as well as trustworthy web pages and that's the mt-db.net. For more additional reading details about please click here or check our official website https://theelale.wixsite.com/mysite/post/must-learn-about-totomutu

    ReplyDelete
  4. Anabolic steroids are the best steroid which assists to grow growth hormones, muscle tissue, tissues, red blood cells and so on. It truly is mainly used in medicinal drugs and for sports activities goal. In case you would like to get it plus there is a best online sports life retail store of USA where you could get oral trenbolone pills, anastrozole, letrozole, HGH as well as many more at best value. If required, intriguedpersons can click here http://turessem.unblog.fr/2019/12/26/some-of-the-most-vital-concepts-about-letrozole-in-usa-for-sale/ or pay a visit to ourrecognized webpage in order to understand about anastrozole along with other steroid.

    ReplyDelete
  5. There are numerous casino places also e-casino athletes and everyone desires to get involved in it. In the web based casino locations a few online websites can be taken advantage of sites that could certainly cheats on you and it's important which you can search for a preferred creditworthy web pages. For more additional reading details about please click here or check our official website https://cheiaque.weebly.com/blog/beneficial-aspects-related-with-bandar-togel-online

    ReplyDelete
  6. There are plenty web-based exchange manufacturers that various companies are gain a advantage merchants and do not want belief. A greener a best move specialist that didn't deceive and that's the palma pass on. This provider can be a optimum transfer specialist and in addition will provide you with several fun serves up in his or her speedy not to mention harmless go system. For more additional reading details about please click here or check our official website https://app.box.com/notes/586759966350?s=m6ls5f1bpw3cszmx4pgob8k0md9l83ig

    ReplyDelete
  7. You will find consumers they like which will make themselves comparable to sporting men, however it is very difficult you might want to help make your overall body muscle at a shorter period. So your technique has the answer and that is the given. Your in many cases are work best matter should you want to build your appearance bulging. For more additional reading details about please click here or check our official website http://blogs.rediff.com/rodraydar/2019/12/30/how-you-can-use-test-cypionate-cycle-details-in-positive-manner/

    ReplyDelete
  8. There are many spectacular motion pictures each and every particular person likes to see these. However a long time citizens was lacking money to enjoy television inside of theatress across the globe, there can be a best option and that's the via the internet films. For more additional reading details about please click here or check our official website http://nerrpol.tripod.com/

    ReplyDelete
  9. There are plenty folks that are passionate of drugs, alcoholic drinks, strong drugs as well as having some other type of intoxications. The actual dependency to cigarettes worth mentioning design intoxications is very harmful to your shape given it induce countless numbers of maladies along the lines of, tumor, cardiac event, paralysis, hypertension, and several many disorders. For more additional reading details about please click here or check our official website https://vc.capitaltrustbanking.com/blogs/5119/91687/the-truth-on-local-drug-rehab

    ReplyDelete
  10. Your casino games is the prominent matches in all of the across the globe and there are countless numbers of casino avid gamers who choose to experience the action. The web gambling dens can be better than often the traditional gambling due to the fact everyone is able to find out it all comfortably and view this task. For more additional reading details about please click here or check our official website https://theelale.wixsite.com/mysite/post/how-to-use-quality-poker-online

    ReplyDelete
  11. A job are a wide complication to the trainees, because it's very much like a rediculous amount of encumbrance about shoulder. The good news is there is also a internet page in order to that you total ones own challenges and that is the best research paper writing services. This is the most effective site which enables you people to succesfully done ones own documents plus some many other operates employ the service of professional writers. For choosing a bit more the informatioin needed for https://www.behance.net/gallery/90098951/Best-College-Paper-Writing-Services, please click here to venture to their internet site.

    ReplyDelete
  12. There are numerous individuals they like to try out any casino site flash games. These online casino free games are generally put money games the place where a musician idea making use of their adversaries. The web based online casinos are certainly more favored when compared to any specific golf game and the likes to act. If you find yourself locating a perfect online casinos site there is a best page and that is the situs togel online. Accordingly when traveling better info about the actual https://theelale.wixsite.com/mysite/post/just-check-out-key-details-about-togel-online , follow this to arrive at their web page.

    ReplyDelete
  13. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  14. My spouse and i take advantage of serious supplies for so many various practices and it's important which we should do ones own business month to month. Most people do not be made aware about just how they facility a trucks to ensure that they makes use of the solution study materials. There are several service manual putting up for sale web pages by which several websites were lacking great service manual, there is mostly a ideal webpage and which also tend to be theservicemanual.com. This informative website offers you the top solution manuals in a high-quality worth. For more information in relation to hhttps://kaylsay.wixsite.com/mysite/post/let-s-get-aware-about-special-repair-manual , check this to consult with the website.

    ReplyDelete
  15. Various kinds of online cinema web pages during which several web pages aren't going to be get the job done fantastic, so there could be a highest quality webpage and that's the solarmovie. This is a most beneficial web-site best places to keep an eye on the necessary treasured web pages online with free streaming. In this site you can savor your whole chosen violence, video clips, web site set and lots of other programs. As opposed to replacing prefer need to learn with reference to https://kaylsay.wixsite.com/mysite/post/importance-of-solarmovie-movies , follow this link to arrive at their webpage.

    ReplyDelete
  16. Any person would prefer to watch free movies and there are countless using the web blockbuster movie locations. In these locations a few web pages are generally not will give you results properly, therefore it's essential that you come across a most excellent relied on online site. There serves as a top site and that is the vmovee movies. For more additional reading details about please click here or check our official website https://snaraktai.weebly.com/blog/lets-get-aware-about-special-english-movies-online-free

    ReplyDelete
  17. As we view every individual of the present era is experiencing diseases therefore the medical care insurance expert services are extremely desired in the marketplace. Health insurances providers protect the professional medical expenses of people and also conquer them coming from dangerous health issues. A lot of people reside a healthy and also secured existence with the aid of Health care insurance services. For more additional reading details about please click here or check our official website https://www.fightwww.com/read-blog/42_the-truth-on-health-insurance-quote.html

    ReplyDelete
  18. There are various using the net casino activities and other people enjoy playing it again. The particular casino activities ended up being got going in the season The early nineties, and in demand on particularly limited time. The actual from the internet casino quests will be widespread in addition to millions participate in it on the web everyday. For more additional reading details about please click here or check our official website https://theelale.wixsite.com/mysite/post/best-possible-details-shared-about-agen-slot-online

    ReplyDelete
  19. Individuals in comparison to Just one hundred billion dollars of internet casino adventure experts all over the world with each individual enjoys doing it. There are plenty over the internet casino web-sites wherein when you're looking for finest web-site as there are a finest site and that is the situs taruhan judi online indonesia. For more additional reading details about please click here or check our official website https://cheiaque.weebly.com/blog/just-check-out-key-details-about-situs-judi-online-indonesia

    ReplyDelete
  20. There are a lot locations giving you with the DIY having a job training systems rrn which there's most excellent online site providing you with the very best guides along with the website is tmzmagazine. In this website the perfect By yourself tips guide is going to be DIY Woodworking and therefore a lot of us think itrrrs great. For more additional reading details about please click here or check our official website https://snaraktai.weebly.com/blog/how-you-can-use-learn-kids-how-to-read-in-positive-manner

    ReplyDelete
  21. Nowadays in this style and classy time period, there's a very best on-line hairdressing shop thatmeets all of your wishes regarding your hair which is titled as Everyday wigs. You'll find huge assortment oftrending hairdressing wigs also all are found on lowest prices including full lace perücken ,synthetic hair wigs, echthaar perücken plus much more. For more additional reading details about please click here or check our official website http://darelmtur.tripod.com/

    ReplyDelete
  22. The exact hosts include the products this help-s you boost while increasing the online world web-site visitors inside your site and there are a great number of internet service plan internet websites in which a few websites are not be very effective. It is therefore vital that you find the best site hosting service agency. For more additional reading details about please click here or check our official website https://app.box.com/s/za9x6vreyhdab15bsso576j42z1gnce3

    ReplyDelete
  23. There are lots of different types of websites fo you to control to get custom challenge coins, but most webpages are usually not nice because they does not start using superb subject matter for producing this challenge coins. So it will be important to chose a most beneficial location more substantial headache . picking up a very best place rather than there's a simple internet page and that's the challengecoin4u. For more additional reading details about please click here or check our official website https://snaraktai.weebly.com/blog/lets-get-aware-about-special-military-challenge-coins

    ReplyDelete
  24. There are a lot individuals give you any purchase just for result in the fake ids. All of the fake ids are highly helpful if you go with them in a proper way. There are several establishments whom put together some of these fake ids however the good choice is control fake ids on the web. For more additional reading details about please click here or check our official website https://sweackech.hatenablog.com/entry/2020/01/15/135750

    ReplyDelete
  25. There are plenty of internet casino online sites where the very best blog and that's the situs slot game online. This can be a greatest site that enable you to get pleasure from almost all land based modern casino mmorpgs within your home pc. This great site also provides appropriate information that tips on how to engage in in addition to triumph the particular online casino matches. For more additional reading details about please click here or check our official website https://theelale.wixsite.com/mysite/post/the-truth-on-daftar-togel-online

    ReplyDelete
  26. There are so many online websites in which you can discover the best group titles or staff companies, that often times there are greatest web-site knowning that would be the shutterfly, albertlsmiths and many additional. Development of the child best webpage to provide you the finest humorous go-karting crew manufacturers and also other type’s party title and also you really enjoy it. For more additional reading details about please click here or check our official website https://app.box.com/s/vwjtwqw8kwdp0etbcsvv23l3thr7zsdv

    ReplyDelete
  27. The fad of social media is crazily current among folks of the modern-day world. Instagram, Facebook and twitter is starting to become the important element of their life as well as likes on their own stories. Therefore there's a perfect web-site known as as Famoid from where you can buy instagram views, fb likes and so on. For more additional reading details about please click here or check our official website http://swuquadan.pixnet.net/blog/post/2318851-buy-instagram-views

    ReplyDelete
  28. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  29. Instagram is definitely an American social networking platform on which millions of people discuss their tales and images. According to investigation, it absolutely was examined that near about 500 million plus in customers use instagram on daily basis. A lot of the celebrities, political figures along with businessman’s acquire fame of worldwide populace by means of expanding their enthusiasts. For more additional reading details about please click here or check our official website https://app.box.com/s/new9f25qf22w3zu51p1h4ulwd2ksv367

    ReplyDelete
  30. There are various persons who loves to participate in the internet casinos additionally they take part in the casino adventures regular. There are a lot casino blogs when the main sought after web site is typically the agen slot online. This is usually a top site where one can savor many of the relied on casino game titles with ease also smartly. For more additional reading details about please click here or check our official website http://kuloqss.tripod.com/sabung-ayam-online.html

    ReplyDelete
  31. Everyone likes to pass the time all the casino games as well as every man or women would rather participate in it. There are other compared to Just one hundred million dollars of internet casino participants that play the casino game every. There are plenty of from the internet casino online websites where the best web site is a new baccarat online. For more additional reading details about please click here or check our official website https://theelale.wixsite.com/mysite/post/check-out-all-possible-details-about-casino-online

    ReplyDelete
  32. In this days, individuals deal with completely wrong selection or else pretend calling away from strange phone numbers. It creates a number complication for all those there are a few phone lookup web pages have established yourself. Phone lookup is a leading help where by you can get yourself phone owner. For more additional reading details about please click here or check our official website https://snaraktai.weebly.com/blog/phone-number-searches-just-dont-miss-golden-opportunity

    ReplyDelete
  33. Risky spiders, bed bugs, cannabis many a few other unwanted pests are usually showing in the majority of households. Many of these invasion provide childbirth to many other conditions also harmful houses. Created critical to remove these kinds of rodents through accurate elimination and even live in a pest-free your house. For more additional reading details about please click here or check our official website https://snaraktai.weebly.com/blog/make-everything-effective-with-pest-control

    ReplyDelete