Pole Position

Another one of the later releases for GCE, Pole Position Vectrex style is a faithful rendition of the Namco Pole Position arcade 1982 release. Pole Position has been released on many platforms both computer and console. The Vectrex and Atari 2600 releases were both made available in 1983 while more modern conversions have featured on Dreamcast in 1999 and XBox in 2002. The Amstrad even received a Pole Position release.

Pole Position will most likely go down as the game which inspired the whole console and home computer racing format with games such as Commodore 64’s Pitstop I and II and the more recent Burnout series strongly related to the original Pole Position. The games only course, the Fuji Speedway. is an actual recreation of the Japanese motor racing circuit which features the predominate Japan Mt. Fuji in the background.

24,000 Pole Position arcade units were initially produced and the Arcades were alive with the sounds of Pole Position for some time to come. This was the racing game to be playing in the early 80’s and the switch over to raster from vector graphics highlighted during this period was a shock to the system for many gamers brought up on the likes of Star Castle, Rip Off, Armor Attack and colour overlays, which were the vogue.

Vectrex Pole Position was only ever released in the U.S. and the whole Vectrex community which by now had spanned from Australia to Germany missed out on the release of the Vectrex’s second racing game. In my opinion Hyperchase is the better Vectrex racing game with the sensation of speed more realistic than Pole Position. Pole Position may have more detailed graphics and the added bonus of some effective explosion scenes but Hyperchase, even with it’s dodgy steering technique, is the number one racer for me. Ebay auctions for a complete boxed Pole Position usually end at around $60.U.S.

Score 7/10

Review written by Daniel Foot

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