Your #1 source for Atari Lynx news and information!
Atari GamerAtari GamerAtari Gamer

We are moving all Atari Lynx related content over to Atari Lynx Vault and all our shop content over to K-Retro Gaming. Please update your bookmarks!

As a result of this change, the following will no longer be available: Online Lynx Emulator, Collection Tracker, Game Ratings, News. If you are interested in contributing content to Atari Lynx Vault, we are seeking editors and maintainers.

Why is this happening? First - the Atari Gamer branding is changing to K-Retro Gaming to allow us to expand to providing games, replacement parts, and mod services to other game consoles. And second - The content management system running Atari Gamer is out of date and Google AppEngine (where the website runs) will no longer allow it to run after the 30th January 2024, so in order to preserve all content we switched to a new and modern content management system and chose a website domain that better suits the subject matter. Since we are operating this website in our spare time, on top of full time family and job committments, some features had to be dropped.

  1. Home >
  2. Game Database >
  3. Game Reviews >
  4. RoadBlasters

The Lynx proves itself again to be THE arcade conversion gaming portable with a strong translation of ‘Roadblasters’. Haven’t heard of this game? It was a bit of a classic arcade racing shoot ‘em up, where your goal was to race on visually diverse tracks, collecting fuel and blasting other vehicles. There were always a few people around the original arcade machine, and if you play this title (particularly with the McWill mod) you’re likely to get your own gaggle of onlookers!

Objective: race that red beast of a vehicle and don’t run out of fuel. That’s it! Simple? Nope. 50 tracks. Enemy cars. Tight twists and turns. No passwords. It’s an arcade challenge alright, and the Lynx does well to capture the intensity of the original. Once you’re out of fuel, you lose!

‘Roadblasters’ looks pretty nice. I wouldn’t say it’s the best looking Lynx racer of them all, but it’s nicely done. Sprite animation and colour palette are excellent. Your car is a vibrant red and all the enemy vehicles show up easily on the small screen. And BOY is the action fast. The speed could well shock you if the only other vehicle game you have is ‘Hard Drivin’’. It’s even faster than S.T.U.N Runner! That’s not always a good thing though, because enemy cars really zoom toward you fast, making them hard to avoid. Your speed reaction time will need to be positively Olympian to avoid crashing into them before the checkpoints.

Sound is also good. I would have loved some background music, but hey, it is what it is. Thankfully, the sound effects are terrific. Explosions, nice tones when you get power-ups, and even some speech! I liked especially the spoken hints and tips between levels. These are really well done. There’s a cool little track that plays every checkpoint, and I really liked the turbo boost sound effect. There’s not a lot to complain about sonically here; you’ll feel right at home in the action every time you pick up the game. It’s definitely a ‘pick up and play’ cart.

Handling the vehicle takes a bit of time to get used to because the action is just so fast. But the car controls really well, once you get used to the frenetic nature of it. The hardest thing to do is avoiding the enemy vehicles, but you’ve got an on-board cannon to blast them. Some vehicles can’t be shot down, including the classic bulletproof limos. There’s plenty of enemy vehicle variety, from motorcycles to cars that suddenly swerve from the grass. You basically have to press the shoot button fairly constantly in order to make progress, because otherwise you’ll run out of fuel crashing into these crazies.

Thankfully, there are friendly helicopters that drop more advanced weaponry and enhancements, which can help you a great deal. But don’t miss them! Items can easily drop uselessly to the ground if you don’t swerve in time to catch them. Awesomely, these modifications will change the appearance of your vehicle temporarily; a really nice touch. This really injects variety into the game itself, which is something the game admittedly needs.

Although this is a game that gets a lot of positive feedback all round, there are certainly a few downsides. Fifty levels are a lot without a save point system. It’ll challenge you, but getting to level 45 and then dying is a bit of a mind fryer. Still, that is what arcade games are ultimately about, and thankfully with each new game you can choose to start at a more advanced point in the race (rather than level one). The other minus is the lack of real track difference. Sure the races look a bit different each time, and there are different twists and background scenes, but there are no hills, no gullies, no tunnels... it’s always a flat open track. That’s where I feel ‘S.T.U.N. Runner’ has an edge on this title; but as mentioned before, this game dominates it pace-wise. You need to have much quicker reactions in this game than ‘S.T.U.N. Runner’. And the later tracks? That’s where your skills will REALLY be tested.

In closing, ‘Roadblasters’ is a brilliantly accurate version of the original coin op, and maintains the Lynx quality for arcade conversions. Although it could have benefited with a bit more variety (and organisation) in its huge number of tracks, it should challenge any serious racing fan; and fans of the original should be pleased with the quality of this title indeed. It’s a great little game that even non-racing fans have a soft spot for, and it really does feel like you are back in the local gaming arcade; only this time, you get to keep your coins! Give ‘Roadblasters’ a blast!

Score Card


This review was submitted by Jon Mc from JMac Productions

Last updated on 13 April 2018
See Game Review Standards and Ratings for scoring details.
Did we get something wrong or you have something to contribute? Please tell us about it!
You can find Atari Gamer on...
Be sure to follow for the latest Atari Lynx news, updates, stories and photos!
[ Don't show again ][ Dismiss ]
We have an online shop that has lots of Atari Lynx related goodies - including LCD mod kits, flash carts, display stands and other fun things for your Lynx! Check it out here.

If your download doesn't start automatically after 10 seconds, please click here.
Cookie Consent
By continuing to browse or by clicking ‘Accept’, you agree to storing of cookies on your device to enhance your site experience and for analytical purposes. To learn more about how we use cookies, please see our privacy policy.
Accept and Close