Super Hang-On is another game that came with my Atari ST in the Power Pack.
(yeah I’m using a pirated version)
ST Format Review
Before I start my review, here’e ST Format’s take on the game.
The power pack came with Super Hang-On and Outrun. Outrun had the glamour, the Ferrari, the multiple routes to the end, but it was also not a particularly good conversion on the ST. Super Hang-On on the other hand, it was fucking brilliant.
Like most racers of the time it used stripes to convey a rolling road, with sprites by the roadside to help the illusion of speed, the view from behind your vehicle. Like other games, while initially showing you alongside other racers, those others would leave you in the dust at the start never to reappear, because it was a time-trial and not a race, with bikes appearing at random as you made your way through the stages.
Courses twisted and turned, offering wonderful verticality and sweeping bends as you try to take each bend at the fastest speed possible, pushing forward to accelerate and holding down fire to activate turbo. Crashing into anything was a mere delay, not the end of the game, though with limited time to complete each stage you don’t have time to dawdle.
Graphics are excellent, but sound too is worth a mention. While using the Atari ST’s notoriously dodgy sound chip, it manages to convey each of those classic Super Hang-On tunes (which WILL get stuck in your head) beautifully and the music in Super Hang-On remains some of my favourite in any game. Sure it’s not as nice as on other platforms, but with what was available at the time it’s bloody lovely.
A bonus worth mentioning – while most games only let you put 3 letters on the high score table, Super Hang-On lets you have 4, which offers a perfect opportunity for filth. It’s got to be worth it for that alone.