Motor Toon Grand Prix, one of the most popular Japanese-exclusive Playstation exports, is finally here. This variation (actually based on the Japanese MTGP 2) is an excellent racing game, combining humor, combat, and competition to the delight of older gamers and youngsters alike. Although MTGP may not have the finesse of sharper, more realistic racers like Sega Rally and Ridge Racer Revolution, few will complain after checking out Motor Toon's gameplay.
The visuals are very stylish, reminiscent of a no frills, Roger Rabbit-style Toon Town. The tracks are quite impressive. On one course, the player can peer through the track as it loops through the sky, glimpsing opponents behind, ahead, or through the ground. Players shoot silly, cartoon weapons at their opponents, and cars bend with cartoonish flair as they swerve to the sides (this feature can be turned off). The theme music isn't particularly memorable, but it isn't annoying either.
Control is pinpoint sharp, a necessary quality for any quality racing game, and it's easy to pick it up. It's a little difficult to keep the gas button down and still maintain easy access to brakes and weapons, but it's manageable. A unique over-the-shoulder glance enables players to look behind them at the press of a button.
This game does have a few drawbacks: First, there's no two-player split-screen play. MTGP foregoes this feature in favor of linked-console, head-to-head play - worthless to those not in possession of two Playstations, two monitors, and two copies of the game. Also, the game is awfully easy. It's a snap to finish in first place on all six courses on normal level the first time through. However, difficulty is selectable, and the game is targeted at youngsters. These are minor problems in a great game with charming visuals, excellent control, and enjoyable gameplay. Motor Toon Grand Prix delivers for kids and kids-at-heart alike.