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Game info

Top Gear 2

Top Gear 2
GenreArcade Racing
DeveloperGremlin Interactive
PublisherGremlin Interactive
Reviewed byndial
Top Gear 2 (a direct sequel to the 1992 game Top Gear) is an arcade-style racer developed and published by Gremlin Interactive. It was first released by Kemco for the Nintendo SNES in 1993, and later ported to the Amiga (OCS/ECS and AGA chipsets) in 1994 by Gremlin Interactive, and to the Sega Genesis by Vic Tokai. While more realistic than its predecessor, Top Gear 2 maintained the arcade-style gameplay the series is known for. A two-player mode is also supported.
In Top Gear 2 you simply have to race around the world in a league against 19 other drivers, through various weather conditions. You receive championship points at the end of each race, but you also receive an amount of money reflecting your final position too. There is a shop waiting for you at the end of each race to spend your money, loaded with stuff to buy for your car (better engines, tires, side-car protection etc). Before any race, there is information regarding the track, weather conditions etc, so take care of adjusting your car accordingly (e.g. get wet tires for races in the rain). There are also bits to collect on the track like nitro boosters (which by the way are limited, but you can buy more in the shop). But there are also a lot of obstacles to crash on them too, which will slow you down easily, which will also, damage your car's engine too reducing its top speed etc. Try not to hit any obstacles that come in your way, as every time you hit something, your Hit Points decrease and you will go slower.
There are a few major flaws though. You will notice that you do get a tremendous difficulty in gripping the road on a corner, and so you have a far harder time actually completing a lap of any given track than the other drivers on the road! Also, the car is quite slow respond most of the time, and you end up fighting the controls more often than not, where you should actually be in tune with the game itself.
In general, Top Gear 2 is an adequate racer, especially when compared to the similar Lotus series, Jaguar XJ220 or Crazy Cars 3. Just don't expect Lotus level quality.

Top Gear 2 has some great music and pleasing graphics (car models nicely drawn, especially the pre-rendered model when your car spins after a crash), but it doesn't offering the visual (and maybe the sound) quality of the Lotus series. It is also awkward that, frame rate drop severely on the OCS/ECS versions, which is rather strange for an Amiga racer not running perfectly in 50fps without a sweat! It doesn't make sense why developers used a hi-res screen mode causing the game to run slow.
The Amiga version uses the EHB color mode that gives up to 64 colors on-screen (comparably, the AGA version has about 50 more colors in the sky background -a smoother color transition). The landscapes are nicely drawn with different palettes featuring daytime and nighttime courses. There are plenty of objects on the sides of the race road too, such as trees and signposts.
Sound is fine in terms of music during racing, though you need to switch either to music or sound effects to hear sampled car engine and other ambient sounds.
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Gameplay sample
Comparable platforms

45 colors
Commodore Amiga OCS/ECS

126 colors
Commodore Amiga AGA
Hardware information

Amiga 500/500+

Amiga 500/500+CPU: Motorola MC68000 7.16 MHz
MEMORY: 512KB of Chip RAM (OCS chipset - A500), 512 KB of Slow RAM or Trapdoor RAM can be added via the trapdoor expansion, up to 8 MB of Fast RAM or a Hard drive can be added via the side expansion slot. The ECS chipset (A500+) offered 1MB on board to 2MB (extended) of Chip RAM.
GRAPHICS: The OCS chipset (Amiga 500) features planar graphics (codename Denise custom chip), with up to 5 bit-planes (4 in hires), allowing 2, 4, 8, 16 and 32 color screens, from a 12bit RGB palette of 4096 colors. Resolutions varied from 320x256 (PAL, non-interlaced, up to 4096 colors) to 640x512 (interlace, up to 4 colors). Two special graphics modes where also included: Extra Half Bright with 64 colors and HAM with all 4096 colors on-screen. The ECS chipset models (Amiga 500+) offered same features but also extra high resolution screens up to 1280x512 pixels (4 colors at once).
SOUND: (Paula) 4 hardware-mixed channels of 8-bit sound at up to 28 kHz. The hardware channels had independent volumes (65 levels) and sampling rates, and mixed down to two fully left and fully right stereo outputs
The Amiga 500/500+ (default) color palette
12bit RGB 4096-colors palette
(32 to 4096 colors on screen)
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