Saturday, August 18, 2012

Midtown Madness

Midtown Madness is a racing game developed for Windows by Angel Studios and published by Microsoft. A demo version was released via download on February 1, 1999, and the entire game was released on February 27, 1999. A sequel, Midtown Madness 2, was released in April 2000, and the final addition to the series, Midtown Madness 3 was released in June 2002 for the Xbox. Set in Chicago, the goal of Midtown Madness is to win street races and obtain new cars.

Unlike many racing games, which restrict the player to a race track, Midtown Madness offers an open world recreation of Chicago. This setting was developed by Microsoft and described as offering "an unprecedented degree of freedom to drive around in a virtual city". Players can explore the city via one of several modes, and can determine the weather and traffic conditions for each race.
The game supports multiplayer races over a local area network or the Internet. Overall, the game received positive reviews from gaming websites; reviewers generally praised the gameplay, though some criticized the graphics.


Midtown Madness features four single-player modes: Blitz, Circuit, Checkpoint, and Cruise. In Blitz, the player must reach a destination within a time limit; in Circuit, the player races other vehicles; in Checkpoint, the game adds the complication of other traffic, such as police cars and pedestrians; and in Cruise, the player simply explores the city. Players have a choice of up to ten vehicles, although only five are available at the start.

To unlock the other cars, players must achieve goals such as winning a certain number of races. Before a race, if the player has previously won the race, they can change the race duration or the weather, which can affect vehicle performance. Checkpoint mode allows players to set the frequency of traffic, police cars, and pedestrians.

Midtown Madness System Requirements

  • Pentium 166 MHz
  • 32 MB RAM
  • 300 MB hard drive space, 
  • 4 MB graphics card
  • DirectX 2 or higher  
Midtown Madness was one of the first games that Angel Studios (now Rockstar San Diego, part of Rockstar Games) developed for the PC.Microsoft was following up on their previous Madnesscomputer games, Motocross Madness and Monster Truck Madness. According to project director Clint Keith, the idea behind the game came to two Microsoft employees while they were "trying to cross a busy Paris street". They proposed their idea to Angel Studios, who were attempting to sell Microsoft a 3D vehicle simulator

Angel Studios were initially hesitant to accept Microsoft's offer, as it "seemed too large a challenge to pull off". After agreeing, Angel Studios chose Chicago for the setting because it is the site of several famous car chases, such as those in the film The Blues Brothers. To ensure that the city was recreated faithfully, Angel Studios had Chicago residents playtest the game. PC Gamer reported a consensus that the recreation was mostly accurate, though Angel Studios had relocated landmarks to enhance the gameplay.


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