Showing posts with label Headhunter. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Headhunter. Show all posts

Petrol Panic! 6 of the best gas stations in Dreamcast games

For a relatively brief period in late 2021, the UK transformed from a miserable, grey, rainswept dystopia into a miserable, grey, rainswept dystopia that had no petrol at the vast majority of its filling stations. Many reasons were put forward for this phenomenon, but the general consensus was that some shitty 'news' websites were hungry for clicks, so they told everyone to start panicking and go and buy some fuel before it ran out...even though there wasn't actually a shortage. 

What ensued was an embarrasing display of idiocy on a national scale, with people fighting over diesel and miles long queues at forecourts. Meanwhile, Hexxus from Fern Gully was rubbing his oily hands at the prospect of another few decades of humans acting like assholes because they couldn't put some 4* in their Vauxhall Cavaliers.

Oddly, Crazy Taxi features no gas stations. I know, I've looked.

Anyhow, It occured to me - while I too was sitting in a 14 mile long queue for petrol, incidentally - that there are numerous games on the Dreamcast which feature equally queue-less petrol/gas stations. And here, for your pleasure is a rundown of six such virtual establishments. It's worth noting that none of the petrol/gas stations here feature a digital queue of Crazy Taxis or Afro Thunder punching people on the forecourt. Which is a crying shame, if you ask me.

San Francisco Rush 2049

It's actually quite a push to think that people will still need petrol stations in 2049 - surely electric vehicles will be the norm then? That said, one of the cars in Rush has an actual rocket engine on the back. Either way, If you travel to the Haight course in San Francisco Rush 2049, you'll stumble upon this double Shell garage that has perhaps the largest forecourt canopy ever constructed. Furthermore, the pumps appear to be emblazoned with acid faces, so maybe they aren't fuel dispensers at all, and are in fact tiny portaloos inhabited by local drug dealers.

Summary: Massively over engineered roof canopy, poor vehicle access, bizarre signage on pumps. Could be a front for more serious gang crime in the wider San Francisco area.

18 Wheeler: American Pro Trucker

18 Wheeler: American Pro Trucker is a game in which you drive trucks with 18 wheels, while pretendng to be an American. Unless you are an American. And a pro trucker. It's a passable arcade to Dreamcast port that is much less impressive when played on a 14" CRT television in a damp bedroom as opposed to on a huge multi-displayed big rig arcade machine with all of your nonexistent friends cheering you on. But enough of my childhood. On the first stage of the arcade mode (Key West), just after you come off the freeway theres a lovely little Texaco on the right offering various delicious fuels for a bargain price. Also, just beyond said petrol station there's an advertising board with a typo. Which is nice.

Summary: Nice looking, well kept and tidy Texaco branch. Intelligently located next to a busy arterial route. Occasionally an overly aggressive rival trucker buying beers will call you a 'greenhorn' and throw a cup of piss at you.

A Quick Look At Headhunter

You are Jack Wade. You were once the ACN's top Headhunter, rounding up the most fearsome criminals on the mean streets of near-future California and bringing organised crime to its knees. However, something went horribly wrong. Waking up in an operating theatre with no memory of who you are or how you got there, you break out of the restraints and hazily escape from the mysterious facility before collapsing in an alleyway.

Once again being brought around in a hospital, you learn of your past glories as the most feared Headhunter around - a type of government funded bounty hunter - the death of your boss and the rise of crime in your absence. You're an angry man with a beard, you want answers, and you want your memory back...but first you need to re-enrol as a freelance Headhunter, get your license, your gun and your motorbike. Somebody will pay for this, but who and why? That's down to you, Wade.
Headhunter is one of the oddest games on the Dreamcast. I don't mean that in a derogatory way - I mean it from a totally bemused standpoint. That's because it is easily one of the best titles ever released for Sega's machine, but due to the incredibly late launch in November 2001 Headhunter was only given a PAL release. It sits squarely amongst games like Evil Twin and Stunt GP that were fantastic games in their own right, but for mainly financial reasons never made the leap across the pond to the United States or Japan.

Amuze, the Sweden-based developer of Headhunter only ever made two games - Headhunter (and the later PlayStation 2 port) and the PlayStation 2/Xbox sequel Headhunter: Redemption - but it's clear from the quality seeping from every pore of Jack Wade's adventure that the development team had a real grasp of the Dreamcast hardware.