Game Review Data
Game Title
SEGA Rally
1 - 4 Players. Battery Save.
Rally Driving
Andrew Blanchard



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SEGA's willingness to port almost all their most prized treasures over to the GBA has been something of a coup for Nintendo, with most of the titles released receiving praise from both gamers and critics alike. Rally games are one area where the mighty publisher has yet to tread though and the genre is already well supported in the GBA market with quality titles such as Colin McRae and V-Rally 3.

SEGA Rally is probably best known for its arcade cabinets, which seem to pop up all over the place. I think the last time I encountered one was in an airport departure lounge. Hopefully, with its history, SEGA should have another quality conversion on their hands, which will no doubt delight hand-held rally fanatics. Let's see...

Screen Shots


SEGA Rally not only provides the gamer with a wide and varied range of tracks but also a generous selection of cars for your off-road pleasure. Choose your vehicle and you're off on one of the numerous Championship challenges. These usually consist of around five sections with each one becoming progressively more difficult due to the terrain and the width of the road.

The other drivers tend to give you little trouble and are generally easy to pass as you gain places. That's not to suggest that the game is a push over though, as you'll quickly discover that while it's very easy to come in the top five, gaining that first place is a bit of a challenge. Before you even attempt to become the world's best though, you're probably better having a stab at one of the many Time Trials as they give you an excellent opportunity to sample the tracks before you have to race them for real.

Main game aside, the extras are mighty impressive with a range of unlockables covering a variety of shapes and forms. There are the usual cars and tracks but followers of this series will be delighted to learn that the developers have included a collection of archive artwork illustrating the game through the years.

Also included is a feature which is becoming increasingly popular where, like Karnaaj Rally and Iridion II, SEGA Rally includes an Internet high score table. This works by giving you a code at the end of each Championship level and by inputting it on the site, you'll be able to see just how fast (or slow) your time is compared to the rest of the world. Most Rally games are much more fun with a multiplayer feature and, with this in mind, SEGA have included one although you will require additional copies of the game in order to sample it.

Finally, everything is saved via a battery backup but with only a single slot this isn't a game that you're going to want to lend.


While the various menu systems are easy to navigate, the cars handling is a little different. The problem here is the way the visuals of the terrain interact with your sprite based car and this means you don't always feel as if you're in complete control of what you're doing or where you are going. You do get used to this after some practice, however, and the tracks are genuinely challenging especially as you reach the harder Championship levels.


While the screen shots look reasonably impressive, once the action starts the whole thing starts to fall apart somewhat and the 3D engine just isn't up to the task at hand.

One problem is the resolution - the environments appear very pixilated as they speed by. The cars are slightly better in their design although these are sprite based and only really require the minimum amount of frames to animate.

Presentation wise the whole thing is much better and the various menu systems are very slick indeed, allowing the user ease of access to the game's many features. The highlight for us though was the gallery section, which features a wonderful collection of artwork from SEGA Rally in all its versions throughout the years. It's just a shame that the rest of the game doesn't measure up to this high standard.

Sound & Music

You'd be forgiven, after viewing the visuals, for believing that the developers had simply rushed this project with little attention to detail - until you get to the audio that is because what you have here is a wonderful selection of sounds that perfectly complement the game. The music and engine sounds are good and the sampled co-driver is not only incredibly clear but also occasionally essential for completing the various courses.

Final Comments

Before you consider purchasing SEGA Rally you really need to ask yourself what you want from a game of this nature. If it's all about the way it looks then this really isn't the prettiest of games out there and the rally genre has had been graced with considerably better 3D engines.

If, on the other hand, you're more led by features and handling, then SEGA Rally could be the title you've been searching for. A generous amount of track, options and unlockables will keep you occupied for some time and that's before you indulge in the multiplayer or Internet ranking competition.

If you're collecting Rally games on the GBA then this should definitely be in your collection but if you only need one then V-Rally 3 is still the outright winner when it comes to experiencing this adrenalin-fueled sport in handheld form.

@ EAGB Advance 2002. All rights reserved.