Saturday, July 27, 2013

Phantom Phinds: Anakin's Speedway

(With Apologies to The Phantom Menace: The Holiday)

So my Wife and I were at Savers yesterday, just looking around, and I saw this:

Thinking this looked hilarious and adorable, I went to show my wife how hilarious and adorable is was. Seeing as how it was $3.99 for this and another kids game she wanted to have for work, we decided to actually get it.

Now, one thing has to be perfectly clear: This is a kid's game.

It says "Ages 4+", but the "+" should probably only go up to 6. It's meant to be at least semi-educational, and there's not much at all to the gameplay.

That being said, for a kids game, it's pretty sweet.

First of all, you get to choose from four characters: Anakin, Sebulba, Gasgano, and Quadrinairos:

Note already the cartoony 2-D graphics. Surprisingly, they look ten times better than most cartoony 2-D graphics from the same era. Then again, it's the late great LucasArts (well, Lucas Learning), so maybe it's not much.

The cool thing is that all the characters shown here, aside from C-3PO, are voiced by their original actors. Anakin is Jake Lloyd, Sebulba is Lewis MacLeod, Gasgano is Bob Bergen, and Quadrinairos is Dominic Armato. Even Fode and Bede are Greg Proops and Scott Carpurro. The only reason 3PO isn't Anthony Daniels is that 3PO doesn't talk in this game.

Because this is a kids game, and your characters support you, all the characters speak English (except for Bede for some reason). Their personalities are mostly intact; Anakin is Anakin, and Gasgano is extremely vain. Sebulba is oddly a little nicer (again, support in a kids game), but he's still slightly condescending and very rough. Quadrinairos is portrayed as a scaredy-cat who oddly speaks in rhyme for some reason...

Anyway, once you choose your racer, the fun begins. You're dumped on Tatooine, though you can also visit Ando Prime or Baroonda.

Basically, the gameplay is just changing the speed of the podracer to make it through the track, racking up laps. However, the track is arranged into six squares, and each square can be changed into a different route.

It's basically a playground where kids can build different permutations of tracks, and practice seeing how fast or slow one needs to go to make it though the various hazards. There's no permutation that allows you to simply make it through by leaving it on one speed, though some changes shorten the track or even change the direction your racer is going.

If I had bought this game when it came out at original retail, I might feel slightly cheated at how little it gives. But at the price I got it, it's a fun little brain-teasing time-waster that I would certainly let my future children go nuts over.


  1. Oh CD-ROM games, how I used to waste time on those when I was little. Good times :). It looks like a fun game.

    1. You know what it is? It's a digital Hot Wheels track.

  2. Did you ever play the Humongous Entertainment games (Freddie Fish, Putt-Putt, Pajama Sam.....)?

  3. What were your favorite CD-ROM games?