Super Skidmarks logo Amiga Computing Gold Award

Tina Hackett dons her helmet and leathers and gears up to review the sequel to Skidmarks. Damon Hill eat your heart out!


New Zealand company, Acid Software are really building a reputation for top-quality software at the moment. Just a few months ago they released the superb Guardian, a 3D isometric shoot-'em-up, then followed Roadkill, a stunning overhead racer.

This time they are once again concentrating their efforts on another racer - one that has a hard act to follow if it wants to live up to the reputation of its predecessor. Yes, it's the sequel to their highly acclaimed race-'em-up, Skidmarks and has many new features. There are new cars, caravan towing and new tracks a-plenty, but with all the current racers around can it still stand up to the competition?



Fun race-'em-ups are undergoing a bit of a revival of late. We've had Team 17's ATR which scored a healthy 89 per cent, and was packed with playability thanks to being able to win money to soup up your car. ATR also had some very nice looking, varied tracks with tunnels and oil slicks on the road, and although there were only three cars they all handled significantly different. However, in Skidmarks 2 it actually feels more competitive and the rough and tumble approach works well as you all scramble to the finish.

Skidmarks 2 will aos have to watch its back from the new competition, Arcane's racer Turbo Trax, which also looks very promising.

Another fun racer that springs to mind is Micro Machines - the tabletop matchbox car game that had you racing around school desks and kitchen tables. Although Skidmarks 2 is set in 'proper' surroundings, it does remind me of Micro Machines in its chaotic, fun and cutesy approach.

This time round, Skids' 2 has a lot of advantages over its rivals with its many options, multi-player features and many screen modes. It also ha millions of cars to choose from - where else can you race cows towing caravans?!



Playability is what Super Skidmarks is all about. It's a pure race-'em-up, there's no doubt about that, and whereas other racing games penalise you for bumping into other cars, this one actively encourages it! You burn off from the starting line in try 'boy racer' style, nudge other cars into the barriers, skilfully steer around the bends and negotiate the ramps. And what great fun it is too!

Unfortunately, there isn't a feature where you can collect bonuses or win money to upgrade your car which would have provided more longevity to the one-player games. However, the Championship mode does compensate in some way as it provides some kid of long-term objective and gives more of a purpose to the proceedings.

Where the game really shines, though, is through the multi-player mode. Extra players can make use of Keyboard controls or the joystick adaptor and it's definitely worthwhile dragging a few friends into the proceedings to experience all the thrills and spills.

There are plenty of different tracks available now to test even the most experienced racer. Twelve new ones have been included, plus the game is compatible with the original 12. Each has a variety of challenges from the simple figure of eight tracks to complex, windy courses with hairpin bends and ramps or bumps you will need to leap over in true rally style.

A lot of the tracks have arrows showing you where to go but it still takes a lot of practice to learn where you are going, how to master the corners and the like.

Control of the game is either via the keyboard or the joystick. The accelerator on the joystick is implemented by pushing forward or by pressing fire, and the keyboard controls are either through the arrow or control keys. Both work equally well and a lot is down to which you think is faster.

Skids 2 caters for both the experts and those new to the game because you can change how the car handles. For example, as well as the usual Classic you can choose Slippery which makes the car totally difficult to handle, or Pedal Car which gives you a chance to practice - and if you haven't played it before you're going to need it!

The trick is to treat the vehicles like Rally cars and try to slide them round the tracks rather than steer them around. And it's recommended you don't take your finger off the accelerator button!

Oh and while you wait for the disks to load you can have a game of Pong - a nice, novel touch that saves you sitting around doing nothing.



Super Skidmarks 2 has plenty of extra features this time, including the ability to customise your own vehicles. Bu using Imagine 2 you can render your cars and add them to the game.

Acid Software are going to be releasing their SkidMarks Racer magazine for fans of the game which will inform players of new tracks and upgrades. It will also run competitions such as designing trackside details and a car modelling competition. A GrandPrix registration section will let readers contact each other to organise race meetings and through a BBS, schedule playoffs.

The game is hard disk installable but Acid feel that because of Piracy problems they have not yet made the track disks installable. However, they are hoping that with the first issue of their magazine they will be including a Track Disk Install utility.

The multi-player aspect of the game is brilliant and the game supports four joystick adapters which connect two extra joysticks via the parallel port - the manual even contains instructions on how to build such a device.

Skidmarks 2 also has improved comms support for local and remote linking, so if you have a Modem you can link to other players and race over the phone lines.

Another nice addition is the different screen modes available. There's Hi (on an AGA machine) and Lo-res (low gives you a large, closer view of the cars) or if two or three players are taking part then the screen splits either two or three ways. A Shared screen mode is also available for four-player team racing.

AGA owners can also race up to eight cars at once and if your machine has more than 1Mb of memory, you will be able to race more than one type of car in one race and listen to the option screen music. Talking of sound, it is also possible to replace audio samples in the sfx drawer with your own.



The game starts with a loud rock tune which gets you in the mood for some serious racing. It's not the kind of tune you'd like to sit and listen to but it does fit in with the feel of the game.

In the actual game itself you do get some very good authentic racing noises. You are given a countdown bleep before each race, your engine roars into life, there's a clash of bumpers as the cars fight for pole position and tyres screech as you spin around the next bend. This all conjures up the competitive racing spirit in you and has you tearing round the circuits like a thing possessed.

A quirky addition is the horn - you can activate this by pulling back on the joystick or left and right keys together. This is great when you are right behind someone and you can let rip with the horn before sneakily overtaking them on the inside.

Music kicks in again on the options screens and it's adequate enough and fits in, but as I say, you won't want to listen to it for long.




The original Skidmarks was never the most graphically high-tech of racing games but was definitely one of the most appealing. It gave the genre a whole new slant with a real fun, almost cute, look to it with its miniature matchbox-type cars. Skidmarks 2 has kept this same approach and made it even better.

As stated before, there are the vehicles from the original plus others, including the option to race some cows and tow caravans! This all looks terrific and adds a very humorous touch. The different cars are all fantastic, from the VWs to the Midget, and there is even the option to change their colours from the blues and greens to a fluorescent tone.

There are many more tracks incldued this time with a variety of different settings. There's an icy terrain,a desert, and a Grand Prix circuit among others, and each works really well with bright colourful backdrops and plenty of detail. Miniature spectators fit in with the cute style, and other additions such as signs and advertising hoardings look good.

A lot of the graphics have been designed with the gameplay in mind, for example, textured tracks and ramps have been included to provide a more challenging race, but they also look good - especially when the cars leap up into the air over the bumps!




This is one hell of a race-'em-up it has to be said. Okay, so it just relies on the racing part and has no bonuses or upgrades to strive for, but it's great fun, especially when you have two or more players. It works really well in bringing out the competitive edge in you and with all the different tracks it provides a challenge. The many different championships add variety too.

The extra cars you get this time round are a great aspect. Some are just there for novelty value, such as the cows, but with a light-hearted game such as this is comes across really well. The VWs and Minis look good too - they're cute and fanatics of these vehicles will love having the opportunity to race around in their favourite cars.

Caravan towing is more than just a novelty too because it is very tricky trying to race around the tracks with these cumbersome vehicles strapped to the back.

Graphics are not particularly advanced but they look colourful and fun, which definitely fits in with the feel of the game. The options screens could do with some work on them though - they didn't look particularly good and were fiddly to operate. It didn't look exactly polished and I would like to have seen something more user-friendly and a bit more attractive to look at.

There were a few minor glitches and bugs along the way but I can't say they happened all that often or were particularly noticeable - they certainly don't detract from what is a thoroughly enjoyable game.

This is one of the most playable and fun race-'em-ups around and with the vast amount of new features added it's certainly worth a look, even if you have the original.

Super Skidmarks logo Amiga Format Gold

Judging by the excessive amount of adjectives in this review, we reckon that Steve McGhill had a lot of fun playing Acid's latest racer.

Super Skidmarks 2 is the rockin'est rollin'est, raciest, raunchiest, rousin'est, ragin'est, rabid'est, rabble'est, road racing game to hit the Amiga in over a year.
No, no, no, wait a minute, that's much too close to being rip-roaringly understated. How about: Super Skidmarks 2, the grungiest, growlin'est, gnarlies, gravelliest, grippin'est, grabbin'est, grandest, graftin'est, grooviest, rallier to appear on the Amiga for close on 12 months.

Nope, nope, grossly grandiloquent. Let's have another go; Super Skidmarks 2: the trickiest, truckin'est, thrustiest, throatiest, thrashiest, threshin'est, trumpetin'est, teemin'est, tourin'est, tractionfest seen on the Amiga for at least a few days more than 52 weeks.

Oh dear, oh dear, it still hasn't worked. OK, OK, try amalgamating the above, adding a load (ir)relevant driving superlatives and then, shout out loud: SUPER SKIDMARKS 2: THE BEST DRIVING GAME IN ITS CLASS EVER SEEN ON THE AMIGA.

Quite an assertion, we know. Especially when you bear in mind that Skid 2 could quite legitimately, albeit cynically, be considered a mere data disk expansion set of the original game.

Since the original earned an Amiga Format Gold in issue 55 (90%), several enhancements have been made, that not only improve it cosmetically, but also improve the expansiveness of the gaming experience.

A500 and A600 owners can have four separate car types appear at the same time. For extra novelty, memory allowing, you can tow a caravan which radically affects the handling of the cars.

For extra convenience, allowance is made for a joystick adaptor to be plugged into the parallel port. This enables four people to play on joystick rather than relying on keys.

A rolling two, three, or four-player game can be played, similar in style to the method used by ATR - it's the least satisfying way of playing head-to-head,. Two players can race using a split screen - a mechanism that lets four people play when a link between two Amigas is set up (see our Future of Video Games feature on page 28).

Super Skidmarks 2: te best driving game in its class ever seen on the Amiga.

And then there are the AGA enhancements, the immediate difference is the ability to use hi-res as standard and have eight cars on the track at any one time. This reveals more of the road and enables drives to anticipate their approach to the next bend further in advance.

AGA machines can also split the screen three ways meaning that there are even more combinations of head-to-head player action when a link is used.

And then there's the feature that we broke the exclusive news about in last month's Amiga Format. Everyone at Acid responsible for its implementation deserves to earn an honorary Knighthood. We're talking about the Super View mode - check out the boxout titled A Super Panoramic View... This feature is excellent. Not only can you race up to eight human opponents at the same time, you also get to see everyone's overall position in the race at a glance. Bloody brilliant.

What's more, it's refreshing to go up against opponents of comparable abilities. Truly tremendous road jousts take place. Drivers of similar skill and quality end up constantly jockeying with each other for position, overtaking and undertaking, jostling and jabbing away as they attempt to drive to the perfect line and the glory of victory.

But not only is Skidmarks 2 terrific to take part in, it's magic to watch. You can passively absorb the styles of the other drivers and plan tactics to use against them in competition.

The best tactic when behind, and catching, is to actively learn the art of cutting up the car in front and handling the speed boost when the inevitable, unavoidable, impact occurs. "Shut the door. Ride the shockwave" is as god as proverb as any to drop in when you've perfected the art.

And, just like real car racing, the driver is constantly forced to make micro decisions and act accordingly. It's through coping with and mastering this mentally dextrous work load that top drivers can enforce their will and superiority on hapless opponents by driving them into the dust.

Nobody knows the secret of that most elusive of all features in a game, gameplay. But in the next few weeks loads of Middlesex University students will be handing in theses on the advanced theory of gameplay. Whether these theses explore the semiotic deconstruction of symbolic enactments embedded in the underlying nervous reflex of human machine interfaces inherent of the computer game medium, remains to be seen.

But one thing's for sure. If ever a game was nigh on perfect, it's Super Skidmarks 2. It's all about control, skill, riming, aggression, instinct, confidence, belief, and most of all, ability. A completely social sport. A test of yourself against your friends and fellows. A sport that couldn't be realised through any medium other than a computer. It screams to be played by more than one person. It's where it's most alive and vibrant and happening and marketable. No surprise then that it appeared on the Amiga first.

A positive benefit of the game is the insight you gain into the character of opponents under competitive duress. Acid deserve to be rewarded for bringing such a playable enjoyable experience to the Amiga first. Do yourself a favour, buy this game.


Super Skidmarks
These two pics are supposed to simulate an A500 screen with four cars only, but we've cheated and used an A1200 here. But, hopefully, you'll indulge us as we let you know...

Super Skidmarks
...that four human players in this resolution is the maximum amount of people you can have racing against each other. It's top racing fun and we thoroughly recommend it.

Super Skidmarks
Whereas, with AGA Amigas, the screen can be split for a maximum of three players to each machine. This can be combined in any order you like, so that one person could...

Super Skidmarks on one machine and two on other. It's up to you. And if you want to link an A500/A600 to an A1200 it can be done. The 1200 will still display a hi-res screen. Tip top.

Super Skidmarks
Finally, the piece de resistance of two 1200s being linked together is the Super View mode. Place both displays adjacent to each other and the whole track can be...

Super Skidmarks
...viewed at once in a complete overview of the course. It feels a bit odd having to glance to another screen when your car crosses over, but you soon get used to it.

Super Skidmarks Super Skidmarks Super Skidmarks Super Skidmarks

The first two disks replicate those bundled with the original Skidmark, but, if you take the reverse direction option into account, you've still got the equivalent of 48 tracks to race on.

Super Skidmarks

With extra memory on board, you can have all eight cars race on the same track. To top that though, if you've got Imagine 2, the program disk has a utility to let you create your own cars. Look out, the Amiga Format Mark 5 Fiat Panda is a reality.

Super Skidmarks logo Amiga Joker Hit

Mit dem Vorgänger dieser Iso-Raserei hat Acid Software Anfang 2004 mächtig viel Staub aufgewirbelt, jetzt fährt endlich der zweite Pistenfeger vor - und der Konkurrenz ganz locker davon!

Das in Blitz Basic programmierte "Skidmarks" kam bei Euch ja bestens an, immerhin habt Ihr es bei der jüngsten Wahl zum Spiel des Jahres prompt zum Vizemeister im Sport-Genre gekürt. Inzwischen war das Vorgängersmodell knapp anderthalb Jahre in der Box: wartet hier gar ein ganz neues Spiel?

Nun, das nicht gerade, denn wer das Original kennt, wird auch mit der Super-Variante im Tank auf Anhieb gekonnt durch die Kurven schlittern, um seine Spuren im Asphalt zu hinterlassen. Und das ist auch ganz gut so, denn an Steuerung, Geschwindigkeit und Scrolling gab es ohnehin nie etwas zu mäkeln.

Bei gewohnter Qualität wurde also die Quantität getunt: Ab sofort dürfen sich bis zu vier Piloten um einen Amiga scharen, um gleichzeitig per Tastatur und Stick um den Sieg zu kämpfen. Vor qualvoller Enge brauchen sich zumindest die Mechaniker unter Euch dabei nicht zu fürchten, denn die Anleitung stellt eine ausführliche Beschreibung samt Schaltplan zum Bau eines Adapters zur Verfügung, der dann am Parallelport angeschlossen wird und die Verwendung von vier Joysticks ermöglicht!

Neben diesem Service findet man neuerdings auch sieben Schwierigkeitsgrade (also drei mehr als gehabt), und der Fuhrpark wurd auf nunmehr acht Boliden verdoppelt. Doch was heißt hier eigentlich Boliden: Neben Mini, Käfer und Formel-I Racer drehen jetzt skurrilerweise sogar Kühe auf Rädern ihre zwei bis zwanzig Runden pro Rennen.

Und wer das Programm "Imagine 2" besitzt, kann zudem ein gerendertes Traumauto der Marke Eigenbau vom Band rollen lassen; alle für die übernahme in Super Skidmarks nötigen Infos und das Projekt-File liegen bereits vor.

Das maximale Kontingent von acht (je vier vom Rechner bzw. von Spielern gesteuerten) Startern, vielleicht gar noch mit acht verschiedenen Typen unterm Hintern, brettert allerdings nur auf AGA-Rechnern mit genügend RAM über den Screen, während die zwölf altbekannten und zwölf neuen Strecken sich prinzipiell auf allen "Freundinnen" im oder gegen den Uhrzeigersinn befahren lassen.

Was die Wahl der Waffen betrifft, können sich hartgesottene Fährer neben den regulären Match-Races auch an acht Championships versuchen - angesichts der hier wahrhaft enormen Anforderungen an Mensch und Maschine werden dabei aber wirklich nur die Besten in fünf Versuchen aus sechs Rennen als Sieger hervorgegehen.

Oder was haltet Ihr davon, die Kisten mal mit einem Wohnwagen im Schlepptau durch die Gegend kacheln zu lassen? Für diese "Höllander Rally" (um die Pole Position am Campingplatz?) meldet sich wegen der verdoppelten Sprites zwar stets nur die halbe Teilnehmerzal, und bei Speichermangel hängt lediglich der eigene Fahrzeugtyp am Heck, aber originell ist die Idee ja wohl allemal!

Okay, grafisch sind die Kurse immer noch keine Offenbarung, aber zumindest mangelt es nicht an Abwechslung. So geht es flott scrollend über Asphalt, Sand und Erde, wobei die niedlichen Miniaturlandschaften mit netten Details nur so gespickt sind.

Das Streckendesign reicht von der popeligen Acht für Anfänger bis hin zum kurven- und kreuzungsüberladenen Chaos für Pfadfinder mit ungebtrübtem Orientierungssinn - Besitzer eines AGA-Amigas kommen auch in den Genuß der Hires-Variante, wo die gesteigerte Übersicht jedoch mit arg winzigen Autos erkauft wird.

Zusätzlich zum zweigeteilten Bildschirm gibt es nun auch einen Triple-Splitscreen, bei dem die Übersicht aber wiederum etwas leidet. Wer dagegen am Vollbildschirm den Anschluß an seine Mitspieler verliert, wird à la "All Terrain Racing" kurzerhand hinterhergesetzt und dafür nach Überfahren der Ziellinie mit Punktabzug bestraft.

Was den Sound betrifft, kreischen die fetzigen Metal-Klänge mit ihren Gitarrenriffs geradezu nach dem Anschluß an die Stereoanlage; dazu kommen das übliche Motorengebrummel und Reifenquietschenm wobei die Samples auf Wunsch auch durch eigene ersetzt werden können.

Nicht ganz so praktisch ist der Umstand, daß das Hauptprogramm und die beiden Car-Disks sich auf Festplatte bannen lassen, während von den vier kopiergeschützten Disketten mit den Strecken nachgeladen wird. Das ist aber halb so wild, weil sich die Wartezeiten in Grenzen halten und die Ladeprozedur von einer Partie "Pong" versüßt wird.

Außerdem erhalten registrierte User demnächst sowieso ein kleines Hilfsprogramm, mit dem sich auch die Kurse installieren lassen. Geplant ist weiterhin das Magazin "Skidmarks Racer", in dessen erster Ausgabe Wettbewerbe für das Designen neuer Autos und Landschaften gestartet werden.

Fazit: Auch wenn dieser Spielspaß-Ferrari seine maximale Leistung nur an AGA-Motoren abgibt, sorgen doch gerade die vielen neuen Features in Verbindung mit den packenden Mehrspieler-Optionen (darunter auch eine für Modem-Raser) für Gaudi ohne Ende.

Und weil Super Skidmarks somit auch auf Standard-Amigas der Konkurrenz den Auspuff zeigt, schwenken wir hier die Hit-Flagge! (st)

Super Skidmarks logo

More fun than you can shake a gear stick at.

Honda Pilots are nifty little offroad go-karts with tubular steel roll frames and odd handy-only controls. They're loud, they're muddy and they go round corners in exactly the same slippery-sideways-slidey way that cars in Super Skidmarks negotiate tight bends. Honda Pilots are better than a 15-storey tower of chocolate digestives.

The trick of cornering them (and of course, cars in Super Skidmarks is to pint the nose of the buggy towards the apex and put the power on, so you slide through the corner/ This kind of rally handling was rather limply attempted in US Gold's Powerdrive (AP45, 61%) but is recreated pretty dshy effective here.

Super Skidmarks may not be as good as Honda Pilots, but its benefits are numerous. It's cheaper, ecologically sound, and you'll never, for example, get shouted at by irate farmers for chewing up their recently planted fields of spring barley. Super Skidmarks is at least as good as a malt loaf the size of a house

Gnhff, but hang on a minute, ANOTHER racing game? There's nothing new about the idea, and in fact there are a few things immediately different from the original Skidmarks game (AP34, 78%), but yet we've been slavering at the prospect of getting hold of it. Why? Because it's a very, very, very special racing game.

The specialness has much to do with the track, which is constructed using quadratic B-spline curve mathematics. Acid did their best to explain this in the first game and received nothing but scorn and ridicule from the technophobic luddite rabble that forms AMIGA POWER, so they've kept quiet about it this time, but what it means is that all the bumps, pits, ramps and curves of the track affect the cars as they travel over them.

After playing Team 17's stil-born overhead racing ATR this month, seeing a car take off over a ramp or bounce into a hole is tremendously invigorating, and has restored my faith in the Amiga as a top games machine.

The cars themselves are also supremely special, having been light-sourced and then rendered so you get glints of light off the windscreen and can make out all kinds of tiny details. Check out the pictures and the impressed, even though our our screenshot technology isn't too good at this sort of fiddly detail.

What we can't get across in the magazine is the great way the cars handle, sliding and weaving and even doing pointless but fun aerial stunts on the ramps. If you're crap at games, or simply on Prozac, you can race at a stupidly slow pace, and if you're one of those ridiculously good players, the speed goes right up to unplayable (by mortals). Take my word of rit, the cars drive perfectly and all options are catered for.

The courses, too, are indeed (and although I feel that I'm over using the word, I can find none other that truly sums up my feelings) special. Even though they initially look samey, the curves and gradients of the game's 30 plus tracks hide myriad different arrangements needing different tactics.

Acid have learned from the mistakes of others and make all the circuits small, so you quickly learn the track, and never run out of opponents to hit. You'll run into the tail enders when you're ahead and the leaders when you're trailing.

None other that truly sums up my feelings

Why all the effort to keep the cars together? Well, because Super Skidmarks is all about bashing into other cars, and from the start, the only way forward is to crash through the pack and inflict well-timed impacts to send opponents into walls leaving them trailing by seconds.

It's easy to work out the line each car is taking and to bock them, and getting the right line on corners can sling you into the lead. If you're struck directly from behind you'll get a huge speed boost although whether this is a pain or a prize depends on whether or not you're on a straight.

Acid have been keen to point out the difficulties of making computers drive cars, which probably explains why Super Skidmarks is at its best as a playground for numerous humans and at its works when it's just you versus the system.

The one player game highlights how much each computer car behaves like all the others, although to be fair, they do err much more than cars in other games, and can quite easily be forced to do something disastrous.

The more real players though, the merrier, as your unpredictable paths conspire to mess up the paths of the computer. If it;s just you, the sinister computer pack slides along bumper to bumper, leaving you to chug along.

But hey, what kind of saddo plays driving games on their own anyway? Super Skidmarks is all about playing against your mates, and it;s here that it excels and also (quite fortunately) that the computer car/unfair overtaking effect is at its most minimal.

On a standard Amiga, you play with a split-screen mode for two players and a full screen for three or four players, where you can use either keys, or a joystick adaptor in the parallel port - good call Acid.

There's the serial link option too, but on a single machine, the four-player game is similar to Micro Machines, where the players knocked off the edge of the screen are reinstated just behind the leader after having a point docked off. I'm not really a fan of this idea, but although it's my least favourite section of the game, it works because of the human element.

There's plenty to recommend the game to all Amiga owners, but A1200 owners have an extra special treat waiting for them. Standard Amiga owners are going to huff and puff at this, but, like Binary Asylum's Zeewolf, I'm sure this was written with the A1200 in mind.

Unlike Zeewolf (which runs terribly slowly on A500s and A600s), Super Skidmarks runs at the same speed on both, but you're offered a multitude of new options on the A1200, and they're all included in the standard version instead of stuck away in a rip-off, more expensive A1200 version. Once again, kudos to Acid.

The massive difference is that the A1200 can handle eight vehicles, which means that the thin tracks appear just that bit thinner, the intersections a bit more frantic and the starts even more intense.

The next major addition is the high-res mode which makes everything smaller, and therefore lets you see more of the track. Once we'd stopped marveling at the huge graphics of the normal game, this is the mode we stuck with, it makes racing much easier by letting you see the corners sooner.

Finally, and this is what elevates the game to near divine status, there's the widescreen link mode. You need two computers and a null modem cable for this, but only one version of the game, and it splits the entire course over two monitors, allowing you to see all the track, all the time. This means (deep breath) that you and your friend, and their friend and their sister, and her mate and her brother and his mate and his dad can all play Super Skidmarks AT THE SAME TIME. Yes, EIGHT players, and YES, it is TRULY FANTASTIC.

The game is a LANDMARK in game history, it's a CLASSIC, and it's a great shame that only the small section of people with access to two A1200s can play it.

So phew, we've actually got a great game this month. Move over F1, take a hike F1GP and get your flaccid, runty little bod out of town ATR. Super Skidmarks rules, because it's great, because it's imaginative, but most of all, because we so.

Super Skidmarks Super Skidmarks Super Skidmarks Super Skidmarks Super Skidmarks Super Skidmarks Super Skidmarks Super Skidmarks

Super Skidmarks comes on seven (count 'em!) disks. There's a bot disk, four track disks and two car disks, and a track change means one disk swap, a car and track change means two. It's quite slow on a standard machine, but extremely zippy on an A1200, and there isn't any of that anoying disk shuffling you often get. Anyway, you can put all the data onto a hard drive AND there's a great Pong game to play while you wait. With spin and everything. Marvellous.

Super Skidmarks


Super Skidmarks
On a standard machine, you get four vehicles in each race, which means either four separate vehicles or two towing caravans. For two players, you get this nifty split screen mode.

Super Skidmarks
Three or four players on a single machine are forced into the least fulfilling part of the game. The screen tracks the lead player, and those knocked off the back reappears behind him.

Super Skidmarks Super Skidmarks
Using two machines linked together (shown rather ineffectually above by a small yellow band joining the two pictures above) you get more options. We're showing two players racing full screen, but you could also have four players or two split screens.


Super Skidmarks
Owning an A1200 throws open a whole new range of gaming options. For a start, there are eight vehicles per race, and more is certainly better. More to beat, more to laugh at.

Super Skidmarks
Then there's the high-res mode of Champions™. By showing you more of the track in tiny, but point-sharp detail, even the two player split screen mode is massively improved.

Super Skidmarks Super Skidmarks
By linking two Amigas (simulated with that weeny yellow thing again) either via a null modem cable or a phone modem (the game easily supports both) you can have two players full screen or three players with one split and one full screen, or four players on split screen in either high or low-res. If you have just four cars, you can link an A500 or A600 with an A1200. Of this we approve.

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Undeniably the ninth wonder of the world is the dual A1200 cinerama mode, where you stick two monitors side by side and view the entire track in one go. To help your eye track from screen to screen, there's an essential buffer zone where the track's duplicated in the middle, and the whole setup, however fiddly, lets you play with eight players. All this on one set of disks.

Super Skidmarks logo CU Amiga Superstar

Price: £29.99 Publisher: Acid Software 01302 890 000

Thankfully Acid Software's sequel to their best known title plays an awful lot better than it sounds!

Ever wanted to know how to build your own four player joystick adaptor? If so, the instruction manual to Acid Software's latest, Super Skidmarks 2, should point you in the right direction. Rather amazingly, the manual includes detailed instructions on how to build such a device, complete with circuit diagram. Still, this is the sort of thing we've come to expect from the New Zealand-based Acid Software.

They first hit the scene at the tail end of 1993 with Skidmarks, amazingly written in Blitz Basic. It breathed new life into the overhead racing game genre, with its pseudo 3D viewpoint, responsive controls and ultra fast gameplay.

Wipe out
Skidmarks is now regarded as something of a classic, and Super Skidmarks 2 was originally designed as an upgrade to the original package with extra tracks as well as an editor for creating new layouts. However, a full sequel made more sense as the product had expanded so much in development, plus of course it would have to compete against the likes of Team 17's All Terrain Racing as well as Acid Software's own Roadkill.

Unfortunately there's no track editor on offer in Super Skidmarks 2, but it is possible to render your own sprites with Imagine, and import them into the game.
Although the sprites are very small and use only a few colours, you could still do some interesting things with this feature, such as racing with digitised faces of your mates instead of cars for instance. You can also use your own custom sound samples.

Of more use to me is the fact that you can incorporate and use the tracks from the first Skidmarks, which at least stops the original game from becoming redundant as it is so often the case when you buy a sequel. There's not really any need to use the old tracks though, as 12 new ones have been included, all of which are superb.

Some courses are fairly basic, straightforward affairs, but most are packed full of hazards like sharp dips and steep ramps. The cars from the original game have returned to race on these tracks and there's a whole host of new models including the Mini, VW, Formula 1 and a cow.

That's right bovine fans, one of the championship courses is called California Cows, and requires the player to race a cow, complete with its own set of wheels, against other similarly equipped cattle! It might sound bizarre, but it's tremendous fun and proved a surefire crowd puller around the office. The weirdness continues with the option to tow a caravan behind your car (or your cow)! Hook up a trailer, and you've got the added problem of inertia to deal with.

Car power
Each car has its own handling characteristics, so the Formula One is extremely fast, while the Mini has exceptional handling. In case you were wondering, the cows are in fact the fastest 'vehicle' featured in the game. Just goes to show the power of methane, eh?

The different characteristics of the cars aren't too important however, as the difficulty level can be altered to suit everyone from beginners to experts. The other major new feature is the split screen multiplayer option that allows up t three people to race against each other using one Amiga.

Super Skidmarks 2 has plenty of benefits for AGA Amiga owners. These include music on the options screens, up to eight cars competing at once as opposed to fou on other Amigas, and a hi-res mode which shows more of the screen at once but might prove too cluttered for some.

But even on an A4000 there's still some noticeable slowdown in the two or three player mode. Don't get me wrong, it doesn't hamper the gameplay in any way and even makes some of the faster cars like the F1 easier to handle. That isn't the point though, and considering the obvious technical prowess of the Acid Software programmers I don't expect to see slowdown in one of their games.

That's just a minor niggle however, and overall Super Skidmarks 2 is a much more polished and complete game than the original. The realistic racing element is still the key to the game's attraction but that wacky humour certainly helps too.

Graphically everything is considerably more detailed than it was in Skidmarks 1 and I particularly like the light sourcing on the cars. The sound has been smartened up too (not that I know what a cow with an internal Formula One engine sounds like!) and the ability to beep your opponents with a horn is a laugh (as in Micro Machines 2), if slightly pointless.

Too tough
Other than the slowdown, my main worry about the game is its steep difficulty curve. If you're expecting to breeze through the courses like you did in the original Skidmarks, forget it. Super Skidmarks 2 is tougher than a rubbery old pork chop. The computer cars have obviously been to driving school, as their intelligence when it comes to keeping on the track is considerable, so expect to finish in last place on a regular basis for the first few games or so.

This is probably a good thing. The original game's lack of difficulty gave it a kicking in the lastability stakes and only the multi player option saved things. But then how many of you were able to take advantage of the preferable modem link option?
Exactly. With a comprehensive and challenging selection of one player games and a simply superb multi player option, this is a title that will find itself being booted up far more than the original ever was.

Super Skidmarks 2 is one of the best games I've ever played, certainly the best so far this year and definitely the best game yet from Acid Software. And for once us Amiga owners have got it all to ourselves. Hurrah!

Hunting high and low

If you have a standard A500 this probably won't be of much interest to you so don't read the rest of this until you've upgraded. Ah, you're back, that's better isn't it? As well as the standard low-res mode, AGA owners can also enjoy the delights of hi-res while playing Super Skidmarks 2. What's the difference? Well...

Lo-res: Offers a close up view which is best suited to the one player mode, that's lo-res in a nutshell, my friends.
Super Skidmarks

Hi-res: More detail and more action on screen is coming to a monitor near you if you select hi-res. Things can become cluttered though.
Super Skidmarks

The car's the star

Super Skidmarks The Cow: This isn't a car, it is a fully fledged heifer. Moves faster than Tony Horgan at a rave but is easier to control.

Super Skidmarks The F1: Super fast and super lacking in control, the formula car is definitely best left to the expert drivers out there.

Super Skidmarks The Mini: The Mini is Mr or Mrs average that doesn't excel at anything really. Average handling and average speed.

Super Skidmarks The Midget: The midget is hard to cagegorise but it's bouncy and a handful on some of the more obstacle-laden courses.

Super Skidmarks The Muscle: The muscle is one of those trucks with huge wheels and consequently has great control but is fairly slow.

Super Skidmarks The Porsche: Classy stuff indeed. Like the Mini, the Porsche is hard to categorise, but one thing's for sure - the girls love it!

Super Skidmarks The Truck: The truck is kinda like the Muscle but without those big wheels. Still features awesome handling though.

Super Skidmarks VW: Hurrah, it's everyone's favourite car, the trusty old Beetle. Nothing special but who cares. It's a Beetle. Hurrah again.

Super Skidmarks logo CD32

Reviewed by Tina Hackett

Acid Software have earned themselves a reputation as top-quality developers and with such classics as Guardian and Roadkill under their belt. It's hardly surprising. However, arguably their best work to date can be found in Super Skidmarks, the sequel to their highly acclaimed race-'em-up, Skidmarks. Receiving rave reviews, including 89 per cent from ourselves. It's now available for the CD32.

There is not a great deal of difference between the versions, although with the CD32 you get a playable demo of their blast-'em-up, Guardian, the movie from Roadkill and the PD version of Defender.

With the sequel comes new cars. These include the very novel cows on wheels to Vws and Minis. Although they don't alter the race particularly, you do get a fun graphical style. Towing caravans is also possible and provides for an extra challenge. You can choose to race in different modes such as pedal car or slippery, and this changes how easy it is to control the car and allows you to get in some practice before the real racing starts.

Up to eight cars can be raced at the same time and the challenge is to treat the vehicles like Rally cars and slide them around the tracks rather than steer them.

Without a shadow of a doubt, this is one of the most playable racers available

The variation in the tracks also works well. From the 12 available, some are the easier figure-of-eight style whereas the harder are the more windy spaghetti type. Surfaces also vary, with bumps and ramps and all slicks giving the racer added problems.

The many options available allow the game to be customised to your liking. Different screen modes, for example, can be changed to split screen or a wider angle depending on how you want to view the game.

The graphics remain fun throughout and the different locations are conveyed well, from desert tracks to sandy beaches. Attention to detail has been paid to the backdrops which vary from palm trees in the background to miniature spectators watching from the sidelines. The miniature matchbox cars also add to the fun feel.

As the cars screech around in the circuits, tyre tracks are left in the dust, and as the road progresses, the track becomes more and more churned up. This works well and adds an authentic touch.

Final word

Without a shadow of a doubt, this is one of the most playable racers available. Each track provides a different challenge, while the different speeds allow all levels of skill to compete. Multi-player mode is where the game comes into its own though, and brings to it a really competitive pace.

Despite no other enhancements for the CD32 version (the manual hasn't even been amended accordingly) it still comes highly recommended.

Super Skidmarks logo CD32 Amiga Format Gold

With the likes of Super Skidmarks, Guardian, Defender and Roadkill on one disc and All Terrain Racing on the other, Steve Bradley's had a smashing time.

Text explorer take note. This spanking Compact Disc not only includes Super Skidmarks (floppy reviewed AF71 92%), the shebang also features a stupendous playable demo of Acid's wonderful Defender-For-The-Nineties, Guardian AND the glory that is the PD version of Defender. They've also rolled in the Roadkill movie, too, from their cunningly-titled racing game Roadkill. Breathless with wonderment?

It's like one of those full Sunday dinners you can buy in the supermarket and microwave for 10 minutes, only with less lumpy gravy (NW. if my mother is reading this, I don't buy those meals, honest).

Anyway, digression is a source of much distraction, so the little cars without ado. This is simply the best multi-player racing game in town, blazing a scorching trial of skidmarks, probably, for the rest to follow in its wake.

As your correspondent fingers his way across the keyboard, Super Skidmarks is deservedly the best-selling computer game in these fair Isles. A game which is fulsome in circuit and resplendent of vehicle Minis, buggies, Beetles, racing cars, Porsches, pick-up trucks, caravans and even cows take the chequered flag - the closest comparison one can make is to that jaunty drive, stock car racing.

Up to eight cars race at one time, bumping, boring and sliding around the gravel and tarmac circuits and the most important attribute to the skilled racer is ine. Take the wrong line and you can be bumped from first to last in seconds. But nudging can work in your favour; a swift sunt and the resultant speed burst can shoot you through the pack.

Super Skidmarks really comes into its own in multi-player mode. Up to eight can race, though you need two CD32s and monitors and a link cable. Oh, and four-way joypad adaptors or keyboards attached to the old console. Fortunately, for the less-equipped, four can race on the one machine, though again, a four-player adaptor is required, though Acid Software kindly explain how to put one together in the manual.

Anyway, to multi-player races, against fellow beings, SS truly demands concentration, dextrous joypadular skills and perhaps most of all, sheer nerve. Picture it, You're in front, two laps remaining, three chums on your tail. Carelessly, you oversteer, collide with the side barrier losing valuable milliseconds and as the third car shoots past, he catches you and suddenly you're facing the wrong direction, victory beyond you. Doggonnit. Give your CD32 a treat.

Wer bremst, verliert!

Super Skidmarks logo CD32 Amiga Joker Hit

Knapp ein halbes Jahr nach dem Startschuß für Disk-Piloten senkt sich für die Iso-Raser der Kiwis von Acid Software nun endlich auch auf CD-Pisten die Flagge.

Der augenfälligste Unterschied zur Floppy-Version hat allerdings nichts mit dem Spiel selbst zu tun: Als Dreingabe finden sich auf der Schillerscheibe neben dem horizontalen Ballerklassiker "Defender" noch eine spielbare Demoversion des 3D-Knallers "Guardian" sowie das wirklich tolle Renderintro der beinharten Raserei "Roadkill" - so was sieht man doch gern!

Weniger gern sieht es der CD-RÖMer, wenn abgesehen von derlei Eigenwerbung nahezu alles beim alten bleibt. So werden die zwei Dutzend Strecken und der um einen Kastenwagen auf neun Untersätze aufgestockte Fuhrpark nun zwar derart schnell ins RAM geschaufelt, daß es sich kaum noch lohnt, zwischendurch die angebotene Runde "Pong" zu spielen, aber sonst?

Sonst reiht man sich am CD32 wahlweise solo oder mit einem Copiloten in das bis zu acht Fahrer starke Teilnehmerfeld ein, in dem jedoch maximal zwei unterschiedliche Vehikel auftauchen. Zwei weitere Spieler, die über Tastatur bzw. Multi-Joystickadapter gesteuert werden, sowie speicherfressende acht verschiedene Flitzer bleiben hier leider (erneut) den "AGA-Freundinnen" mit Scheiben-schleuder und RAM-Erweiterung vorbehalten.
Das gilt auch für den Modem-betrieb oder die Option, mit "Imagine 2" gerenderte Fahrzeuge zu importieren.

Im übrigen wartet aber auch auf Konsoleros das volle Programm: Die Kurse dürfen unter sieben Schwierigkeitsgraden im oder gegen den Uhrzeigersinn befahren werden, wobei die Rundenzahl in sechs Stufen von zwei bis 20 zu bestimmen ist.

Einzelläufe sind relativ simpel zu bewältigen, während sich nur erfahrene Asphaltfresser an die acht Meisterschaften wagen sollten, wo in allen sechs Rennen die Pole Position eingefahren werden mu". Und wem Rinder auf Rädern dabei nicht skurril genug sind, der hängt sich eben mal einen Wohnwagen ans Heck. Aufgrund der verdoppelten Spritzezahl kacheln dann aber nur bis zu vier CampingFreunde gen Süden.

Für die Darstellung der abwechslungsreichen Iso-Strecken hat man die Wahl zwischen LoRes- und HiRes-Modus, sprich großen Autos oder guter Übersicht. Zwecks Rudel-Raserei mit einem oder mehreren Kumpels darf man den Screen auch splitte, wobei die dreifache Teilung am CD32 natürlich nicht gebraucht wird.

Teilt man sich hingegen brüderlich einen Bildschirm, schließen Nachzügler gegen Punktabzug automatisch zum Hauptfeld auf. An der genialen Steuerung sollten derlei "Rückfälle" aber bie liegen, schon eher am eigenen Unvermögen.

Schade also, daß kaum CD-spezifische Neuerungen zu verzeichnen sind; selbst die fetzige Metal-Musik kommt nicht direkt von der Silberscheibe. Schön hingegen ist das nunmehr viel bequemere Handling, wodurch Super Skidmarks den Hit mit einem Zusatzpünktchen aufpolieren konnte. (st)

Super Skidmarks logo CD32

Are you ready? It's "showtime"!

They just don't stop do they? I mean if you're bringing out a (has to be better than everything else because it's on) CD version of Super Skidmarks, how do you improve on it? Okay, so you can get rid of all that disk swapping, but everyone does that, just how do you make it special? Acid know, and they've showed us.

Forget the game for a minute. What's left? Nothing, right? No-no, not with this CD32 version. You see in a very clever move Acid have decided to give you more than you probably deserve. And in a similar undeserving sort of way, we've decided to tell you all about it in a box placed somewhere on this page.

The reason I mention all this first is that, like me, you'll probably know all about Super Skidmarks already and will fancy checking all these other bits out first. Once that's done you can move onto the game.

Only there's not that much to talk about. The game is pretty much the version we reviewed in issue 48 (the AGA version receiving 91% from Cam) only you don't have to worry about swapping disks to load in new tracks or cars because it's all on the one CD.

The only drawbacks with the CD32 machine is that you can only have two players rather than four and you can't link up two machines to play against each other either. Despite what the ported-straight-over-A1200 version tells you in the game. Unless of course you happen to have one of those SX-1 things.

Know all about Super Skidmarks

Right enough of this techie rubbish, back to the game - which as you already know is great. In fact, it's brilliant. Without wishing to repeat what Cam said in this review, and he said a lot, it's singularly the best and most exhilarating overhead racing game it's ever been my pleasure to play.

And I'm not just saying that because of options, cars, tracks and everything else thrown in, you not only enjoy the experience, you really feel like you're getting your moneys worth when you play the game. And if a game can give you that feeling, it's a very rare thing indeed.

So rush out and buy the CD, check all the little extras thrown in FOR YOUR PLEASURE (and not a sneaky and shrewd business-minded move from Acid, oh no), and then play some more. And once you've finished with it, in a few years or so, frame it or lock it away somewhere safe because a gaming jewel this precious deserves to be cherished. CHAMPIONS once more.


Guardian Demo: A rather tasy and completely playable level from the Game of Champions. The first level, and one we've had on a coverdisk, yes, but still a level just the same.

Roadkill Movie: Sit back and enjoy a demo that's actually entertaining. And that's not just because someone gets run over by a car (doing about 200mph). Honest.

Defender: A complete version of the classic arcade game, written in Acid's very own Programming Language of Champions, Blitz Basic 2. And great fun to play it is. Aw, bless 'em, eh?

Super Skidmarks... ...Data Disks

Reviewed by Andy Maddock

Super Skidmarks. Is that what you get after a curry? No, it's the data disk for another excellent racer, this time courtesy of Acid Software.

There are 12 new tracks and loads more cars, and there are even new championship modes for people who saw Skidmarks as a walk in the park. This one will bump up the difficulty level tenfold as there are new difficulty levels for you to mess around with. And that's not all.

The package comes complete with a hard drive installation script so you can, thankfully, add every single Skidmark disk into your collection - and when you buy this, there is a need for a hard drive. If you manage to swap this many disks you will end up with very sore hands and a red hot disk drive.

Whether this add-on is worth £15 is another matter. If you like Skidmarks enough then go for it. In my mind there's no better racing game of its type.

Super Skidmarks... ...Data Disks

With over 3,500 Super Skidmarks registrations being recorded at Guildhall Leisure, it's surprising that a data disk like this one hasn't been put out onto the market earlier.

Due to the customisable nature of the game, there's plenty of room for commercial releases of new tracks, new cars and new sound FX. Andrew Bolt, the winner of the Amiga Format competition 'Imagine Built My Hot Rod', has already put four car models into the Public Domain and, for a modest fee, is offering twelve others.

Bearing in mind, it's worth looking at what Acid are offering for £15. Inside the box there are three disks. One is an updated and revised program disk. It now offers three extra championship races and the ability to install tracks to hard drive. The latter of these two options is most welcome for it helps cut down on tedious loading times.

Another of the options that makes it onto the back of the box is the inclusion of two new difficulty levels: mellow and tough. They wouldn't be tood bad if they actually contributed a noticeable difference to the difficulty levels already there. But they don't.

Running through a mostly tedious exercise in standalone time trialling, I found that the Mellow level lies just in between Clasic and Grunty. Tough is very like Zippy except the traction of the course, or the grip of the car, is slidier. You wouldn't really notice or care if they hadn't been included.

The crux of the matter comes down to how much you like Super Skidmarks and how much you're prepared to pay for twelve extra courses. Considering that £15 can get you some top flight budget games these days I know which side I'm plumping on.

A tenner would've offered better value. The new courses are welcome and no doubt will be a breath of fresh air for Super Skid veterans, but think hard before parting with your cash.

Super Skidmarks... ...Data Disks

Anno 1994 habt Ihr die launige Iso-Raserei bei der Wahl zum Spiel des Jahres zum sportlichen Vizemeister gekürt, heuer hat's für Nachfolger gar zu Gold gereicht. Acid Software bedankt sich mit drei neuen Data Disks!

Der Inhalt der Scheiben ist allerdings nicht eben opulent ausgefallen. So sucht man z.B. fahrbare Untersätze der noch nie gekannten Art vergebens, und selbst die alten gibt's nur mit den Car-Disks von Super Skidmarks in der Garage.

Zwei Datenträger halten also ein Dutzend neue Strecken bereit, während einer das überarbeitete Hauptprogramm in der Version 2.21 enthält.

Neben Feintuning in Sachen Laderoutinen, zusätzlichen Schwierigkeitsgraden und einem verbesserten Support für (Null-) Modem-Piloten, ist der grellste Lichtblick hier die endlich integrierte HD-Installation für alle Kurse und Boliden.

Als nettes Schmankerl gibt's obendrein noch eine zusätzliche Championship sowie ein Konvertierungsprogramm für alle Automobilhersteller, die mit der Rendersoft "Imagine" eigene Gefährte vom digitalen Band laufen lassen. Das wär's dann aber auch schon gewesen, was die Neuseeländer hier ins Rennen schicken.

Zwar beträgt das Startgeld lediglich verschmerzbare 35,- Märker, wenn man jedoch bedenkt, daß HD-Installation und Tracks bereits allen registrierten Usern des Erstlings versprochen wurden. Bleibt ein leicht fader Beigeschmack.

Und der wird noch ein wenig bitterer, sobald man sieht, daß die "Blitz Basic"-Spezialisten diesmal nicht mit der gewohnten Sorgfalt ans Werk gegangen sind: Wie sonst wäre es zu erklären, da" bei einer Strecke der Scrolltext mit dem Countdown fernab von der dafür vorgesehenen Anzeigetafel durch die Luft flimmert?

Davon einmal abgesehen ist und bleibt Skidmarks auch in dieser Version zweifellos die ultimative Multi-Player-Rallye für die "Freundin". Und so lohnt sich der Kauf der Erweiterung schon allein deshalb, weil Diskjockeys nun ihren Job an den Nagel hängen und sich voll und ganz aufs Fahren konzentrieren dürfen... (st)

Super Skidmarks... ...Data Disks

Super Skidmarks is one of the finest Amiga games around. So said Cam in issue 48 and while Jonathan and Sue agree, I've never been quite as keen. But it was me who was lumbered with reviewing these pointless data disks and, needless to say, I didn't much like them.

Like the Super Tennis Champs data disks we featured last month, there is no reasonable explanation why these 'new' Skidmarks features weren't part of the game in the first place. Twelve tracks which look more like the doodles of an infant, three poignantly pathetic championships and two unnecessary skill levels for fifteen smackers is embarrassingly shambolic.

If Acid had (say) added characters with different skills, new vehicles, tracks with brand new terrains or anything which added something to the original it might have made this venture worthwhile. They haven't and it isn't.

Super Skidmarks... ...Data Disks

Price: £14.99 Publisher: Acid Software 01302 890 000

Already a racing classic, can this upgrade face the acid test?

Anyone who's already lined up on the grid in Super Skidmarks 2 will know that the game is unashamedly excellent, and has already won its place on the Grand Prix podium of all time racing classics. Those of you who are die hard racing fans and spend most of the time in flame-retardant underwear, may even remember that SS2 was released last May as an upgraded version of the original Blitz Basic offering. IT would seem that Skidmarks has now been upgraded more times than Pamela Anderson's big top - so after so much cosmetic surgery, can anyone still see the original point?

Rest assured, my metaphor remains accurate: even after a lot of cutting and tucking Skidmarks is still beautiful to look at. But poke me in the eye with Tommy Lee if I can notice any real cosmetic improvements in the update. According to Guildhall 'it loads better and plays better' but, having had CU Amiga Magazine's original copy mysteriously disappear (give it back, Rick, Alan will forgive you), I wasn't really in a position to test this.

Practice lap
For anyone out there without a clue about what Super Skidmarks 2 is all about, let me explain. There are eight types of vehicle to race with, from the Humble Mini through Porsches, big wheeled off road type trucks up to an F1 car and even a supercharged cow!

These machines each have their own unique handling characteristics which can even be further tailored to suit almost everyone's style of racing. Furthermore, you can also race up to four human players against each other at a time - twice the amount if you have a serial cable and a mate with another Amiga.

So just what so you get for your fifteen notes? Well, there's 12 new tracks, three new championship modes and an uprated program that improves the serial support and the loading routines. Acid have also written a new converter to replace the old one, thus giving better support to Imagine users who want to draw, import and use their own cars, cattle or cantaloupes for racing.

But wasn't this already available with Super Skidmarks 2? Acid do seem to be gilding the lily as the only really new item has to be the 12 tracks. These do vary from rather simple ovals through the whole gamut of banked curves, crossovers, jumps and even icy tracks which will certainly give the already converted something new to aim for.

Practice lap
Is all this worth it? Well you'll ultimately have to decide but I think that for the cash Acid should really have included a simple to use track editor this time around. After all, the data disk doesn't really add that much for your hard earned cash and as you must already have the game in order to use the data disks, this doesn't really seem a just reward for local customers.

It's a shame too, because with the inclusion of a track editor the floodgates could have been really opened up for players to race against their friends with renewed vigour on their very own tracks.

Of course, if you're a wiz with Imagine then you'll do OK, but what about regular folks like me who don't know their art from their elbow?

Ultimately though you do get another dozen layouts for what is still a classic racing game. And you'd never know, Mark Sibly may be encouraged to produce another version.

Ultimate Super Skidmarks logo CD32 Amiga Format Gold

Having just sold his car, the whole of the West Country breaths a sigh of relief now that Andy Smith's confied to racing on the Amiga.

Oh boy, can I rip 'em on this one though! Ever since it first appeared, Skidmarks has been a firm Amiga Format favourite. There's just somethng that's so playable about this game.

It's more of a pure racer than something like Micro Machines and, even though it sounds fairly silly, there's something extremely satisfying indeed about churning up the tracks and putting skid marks all over the course.

Ultimate Skidmarks features everything that appeared in Super Skidmarks but now it's on CD and there are a couple of additions. There are some 50-odd cars to choose from now and up to eight of them can run around on your AGA machine, though only four of them at once if you're towing caravans.

With Acid's reputation for weirdness it should come as no surprise that some of the new vehicles are a little odd - skiers, the Starship Enterprise, X-Wing fighters from Star Wars and a rather disturbing baby in a little walker. Strange fruit indeed.

....there's something extremely satisfying indeed about churning up the tracks and putting skid marks all over...

Also included on the CD are Skidmarks Farmyard and Super Silly Skidmarks, but both of these are a bit lame with the only real additions being the odd, quiet, sound effect.

The rest of the game's just peachy though, the three player split screen is good, though a little confusing, and it's fab that you can locally and remotely link a couple of machines together and really get the adrenaline pumping.

There's still the single race option or the championship mode and it's still disappointing that in championship mode you don't get the chance to choose which car you drive. You either drive the Porsches in the Porsche championship or the F1 cars in the F1 championship or whatever.

And it's still curious to find that the computer drivers are very easy to beat when you're having a single race and a complete nightmare when you're in a championship. Well, it is when you select the pedal car option. If you try the zippy or slippery options then things ain't quite so easy.

Whichever way you look at it, Ultimate Skidmarks is just the thing to slip in your CD drive (when you're not playing Myst that is). Go for it.

Ultimate Super Skidmarks logo CD32

Price: £14.95 Developer: Acid Supplier: Islona 01793 432 176

Like something you stepped in that just won't be shaken off, Skidmarks just won't go away no matter what you do. Unlike the slop on your shoe, Skidmarks was actually very good once. IT would be stretching the truth to say it's still the classic game it was when it first arrived all those years ago, but it does still have a certain charm all the same.

This is on CD and seems to be appealing to the Skidmarks completist. You get a few alternative versions of the game to run, which come with different sound effects, silly vehicles (fish, water, skier, tank, helicopter, etc.) and... well that's about it really.

OK, so you do get a healthy 24 tracks to choose from, which isn't to be sniffed at. Even so, I find it hard to get enthusiastic about yet another release of the game, and that's coming from a self confessed Super Sprint addict with a life-long passion for top-down racing games.

This presents a bit of a problem when it comes to scoring it. It's certainly the most complete and accessible version of the game, running direct from the CD with no problems at all. It hasn't actually degraded or gone sour since we last played it, but time moves on and standard change. Although it has the hallmarks of a classic game, like multi-player split screen modes, speed, humour, flexibility and so on, the core gameplay is now starting to look quite dated.

You could compare it to Micro Machines, which recently fared well with its Playstation conversion, and it would stand up quite well against it if you'd never played Skidmarks. However, having seen and played it in a number of slightly different incarnations over the years, I've really had my fill.

On the other hand, if by some freak of fate you've still to sample its slippery delights, maybe it's time you did. Now can we call an end to this, unless we're going to get a proper, whole, new Skidmarks 2?