Out Run was a major hit on the arcades in 1986 and was notable for its pioneering graphics and music. Due to the game's popularity, it was converted in many home 8/16bits platforms, from 1987 and forward.
STORY / GAMEPLAY You drive your convertible sports car (that looks like a Ferrari Testarossa) having your girlfriend on the passenger's seat. Note: This game did not have an official Ferrari license (unlike its sequel Out Run 2, released many years later). Starting the race at a coastal road, you must pass through four checkpoints completing five laps within a set time limit. Before every checkpoint, there is a "fork" allowing you to enter one of the two different race routes. The game is notable for its innovative hardware of the time (including a mechanically moving cabinet), the fantastic graphics and music, the option to select the soundtrack of your choice as well as the opportunity to change routes. The aim is to race as fast as you can and change level before the time runs out. If you do this, your time will be extended and you'll continue racing on the next track. Unfortunately, many aspects and innovations of the coin-op are missing here, due to the poor technical specs of the game for the Amstrad CPC port.
GRAPHICS / SOUND All 8bit ports are quite poor and lack lots of the features found on the arcade. The game is featured here because of its popularity and only! The CPC version, though it shows a beautiful and colorful title screen (really promising when I first loaded the game), all it offers is a very poor game that runs very slowly and the scrolling suffers a lot, which leaves not a single feeling that you're driving a Ferrari! Besides the nice original intro tune, the rest of the game is almost soundless; its sound consists of frustrating SFX and no music at all. In my opinion, Out Run is one of the worst arcade conversion for the CPC home computers.
CPU: ZiLOG Z80 4MHZ MEMORY: 64 KB or 128 KB of RAM depending on the model (capable of being expanded to 512k using memory extension boards) GRAPHICS: Motorola 6845 address generator, Mode 0: 160x200 / 16 colors, Mode 1: 320x200 / 4 colors, Mode 2: 640x200 / 2 colors, A colour palette of 27 colors was supported SOUND: The CPC used the General Instrument AY-3-8912 sound chip, providing 3 channels Mono Sound (via internal speaker) but capable to offer Stereo Sound provided through a 3.5 mm headphones jack (with pretty impressive outcome!). Also, it is possible to play back digital sound samples at a resolution of approximately 5bit. This technique is very processor-intensive though.