SNES Longplay #36: Uniracers (100%)

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Uniracers, released as Unirally in PAL territories, is a video game created by DMA Design and Nintendo of America for the SNES in North America in December 1994 and in the PAL territories on April 27, 1995. The game focuses on fast moving action, and was released to show that the SNES could handle games similar to SEGA’s popular Sonic games.

The gameplay of Uniracers involves racing riderless unicycles around a 2D track. Heavy emphasis is placed on performing stunts. Performing stunts causes the unicycle to go faster on race or circuit tracks and earn points on stunt tracks. The stunts that can be performed are relatively simple, mostly only involving jumping in the air and rotating about a given axis in 3D space. The idea is to be able to perform these stunts quickly in tight situations while landing the unicycle on its wheel to avoid wiping out, which results in the loss of accumulated speed.

The game features nine tours of five tracks each (two race, two circuit, one stunt) for a total of 45. Beating each of the first eight tours requires defeating computer-controlled opponents for each of bronze, silver, and gold ranks. The last circuit features the Anti-Uni as the computer-controlled opponent. During that tour, touching the Anti-Uni causes several odd effects, such as the track becoming invisible, the controls reversing, and the background no longer moving in sync with the actions.

Split-screen two-player modes are available as well, including a league mode that allows up to eight players to compete in one-on-one races. There are 16 different colored unicycles to choose from, each with a save file and customizable name.

The track is made of bars with patterns on them which correspond to the track’s properties at or near that point. For example, a solid yellow bar indicates a shortcut and orange/yellow bars indicates an upcoming hazard. There are also various obstacles like speed-ups, corkscrews, loops, twists, and of course, jumps.

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10 COMMENTS

  1. Oh man! I remember when I was a really young guy (I'm 30 now) and my parents took me to the video shop to rent a SNES for a week and I got to pick a few games. Just one glance at the graphics on the box of this game got me so hyped. Then when I played it I was in another dimension. That feeling of experiencing something like this as a kid is unmatched, I'll never forget that. Glad I found this video, good memories…

  2. Man, this was such a good game! That intro bring back so many memories. I was born in ‘89 so was able to appreciate this as a kid in all its glory

  3. This game really needed some kind of background I mean what did they spend to make it $200 US com on Nintendont!

  4. Pixar, don't be heckin' stupid!

    Explanation: Pixar filed a lawsuit against Uniracers because they used "their" unicycle from an animation they made at the time. When the contrary part said it's just an unicycle, Pixar just used the excuse that "they have the rights to any digitally rendered unicycle", winning the case. Uniracers had to be pulled out from stores, and it couldn't sell any more copies than the ones already sold.

  5. "You know what this needs? Machine guns and prostitutes." -DMA Design (now known as Rockstar North), creators of this game, and later the Grand Theft Auto series.

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