Star Wars Episode I: Racer has a soft spot in the hearts of many N64 fans, it being regarded as one of the best Star Wars games ever made and making many, many gamers get in touch with their emotions — mainly anger. Known for being as hard as the many rocks you will hurtle into and also featuring an incredible sense of speed, it recently found a new home on current-gem systems with a remaster.
If slightly better (and I mean slightly, the update hasn’t been as comprehensive as many had hoped) visuals don’t matter much to you, it might be worth tracking down the original Nintendo 64 marvel. Luckily, instead of scouring eBay for dog-eared original prints, Limited Run Games has recently made it a little bit easier for you to track it down with a recent reprint.
The most immediately obvious thing about this reprint is its packaging, which makes the game feel like something that you would pull off a hook in a toyshop. Personally, I love Darth Maul’s massive face leering out and me, and the fact that you can reseal the box after opening it means that it may actually last you for sometime. It also helps that it’s fairly sturdy — I find that quite a lot of blister packs can be just plain bad for durability, but this is holding its shape super well so far.
The cartridge itself is slick with the exact shape and heft you’d expect from the N64, which should probably be a given. Still, considering it’s been many years since I’ve played anything on N64, simply holding the cartridge brought back many great memories. There’s a great build quality here too, LRG clearly putting the work in to get all the little details as close to the original thing as possible.
This is probably the point where you’d expect some mention of the gameplay, if the reprint holds up to the original and all of that. Unfortunately, I’ve had nothing but a nightmare trying to get the game working and it all comes down to a faulty N64.
As the cartridge is NTSC and I’m in PAL, I decided to pick up an NTSC N64 that should play the game. After many different televisions, monitors, cables, convertors, games, and sweat, my N64 just doesn’t seem to be as compatible as suggested. I actually asked the sellers if they had any tips to get it working. They told me to blow in the cartridge.
Don’t do that. It even says not to do that on the cartridge.
While I unfortunately cannot play the game right now without picking up another NTSC N64, Episode 1 Racer is still a very cool collectible for both Star Wars fans and those who want to round out their N64 collection.
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