's Super Mario Kart
. Remove half of the characters. Replace the remaining four with Sega
's Sonic the Hedgehog
characters. Then take out the neat items and Mode 7
abilities, and you'll pretty much have 1994's Sonic Drift
for Sega Game Gear
Sonic Drift is a pretty obvious clone of Super Mario Kart, although it lacks the innovativeness that made the Nintendo offering so much fun. There are four characters: Sonic, Tails, Dr. Robotnik, and Amy Rose. You pick your player and the CPU controls the others as they race you around the track. Collect rings scattered on the track to increase your speed and prevent from spinning out when bumped by another racer.
There are six different zones to race through, each based on the zones from the original Sonic the Hedgehog game:
- Green Hill Zone
- Marble Zone
- Spring Yard Zone
- Labyrinth Zone
- Star Light Zone
- Scrap Brain Zone
The races are divided into three cup series: Green, Yellow, and Red Chaos circuits. There's also free drive for practice.
The race itself is in the grand tradition of Pole Position. It seems as though it's the track that's moving and not your character. You move left and right, making turns with the track and hitting the occassional jump pad or zipper. At the end of each race you earn points based on your finishing position and the player with the most points at the end of the circuit wins the match.
This game was released only in Japan, although all the text in the game is in English. The sequel, Sonic Drift 2, adds some improvements to the game concept and was also released in the USA (and in Europe as Sonic Drift Racing). The easiest way to play the game is to get ahold of Sonic Adventure DX for the Nintendo GameCube which includes this game as a bonus.