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JadeDragon's reviews and playing tips: Sharp Zaurus Linux games

tkcRace by, Price: $ 10.95
Reviewed October 2003 by Michael Woo

tkcRace, developed by theKompany, is a race car game for the Zaurus and somewhat modeled after the classic games like Pole Position. You will have 4 types of cars to choose from in the race and 5 racetracks with different difficulty levels. The controls of the game make it easy to pick up and play.

tkcRace is played from a top down view. A birds-eye view of the racetracks is also shown to allow you to plan ahead for the sharp turns and check out what positions you are in compared to other racers. You can customize the race by selecting a course from the four available courses and number of laps to race. You can also select one of the 4 different color cars, although they don’t seem to drive any differently in the race. The color allows you to differentiate your car from the others while in the race. There is a practice mode where you are driving the sole car, and a race mode where you race against 3 other cars controlled by the computer.

The almost cartoon-ish style graphics look nice but give the game a feel of driving a PacMan around a course. The course images and car design are colorful and the animation of the car race is smooth.

The game is controlled by D-pad on the Zaurus, with Left and Right steering the car and Up and Down giving the acceleration or even going in reverse. tkcRace takes up 1MB of space. I tested this game on a Sharp Zaurus SL5500 with’s custom version of the sharp 3.10 rom.

If you like race car games, this would be cool game to have when you have some down time. If you are not familiar with driving games, you could think of this as 4 PacMan’s racing against each other, where the basic strategy is not to make any mistakes, and to block anyone from passing. The variety would mainly be the 5 courses to pick from and the number of laps for the race, and your favorite color racecar.

Tips and Hints

Use the “PRACTICE” mode to familiarize yourself with the controls driving through a course. You slow down each time you veer off course, so you need to master the controls to keep a lead. If the other cars do try to pass you, try to block them the best you can. Once they pass you, it’ll be hard to get back in the lead.

screen shot

Ratings (scale of 1 to 5):

Graphics Graphics are simple but look nice with vibrant colors.
Sound N/A No sound.
Fun Meter This game is simpler than a game like Test Drive on the PC, but it will be good to kill time if you like driving games.
Addictivity The game is fun for short time racing with just 5 courses to drive on. The AI of the 4 different cars doesn’t represent different car features dramatically enough to make a difference as to which car you like better than the others.

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