Based on the 1990 Tom Cruise/Nicole Kidman vehicle, Days of Thunder lacks any real thunder, and is also devoid of Hollywood actors pretending to love each other.
If you can get the hang of the controls, however, Days of Thunder is a competent racing sim. ‘A’ is go, ‘B’ is brake, but navigating between the two is as tricky as a Run D.M.C. argument. The title screen has no options, except to get in the car and drive. After a quick qualifying lap, you’re off to your first race and, by thunder, do you have to be good to win or even place. Step on the gas, until you get to a turn, then step on the brakes.
The computer-controlled racers don’t seem to need brakes, which will make you want to bash into them. Alas, bashing into other cars or the sides of the track will result in you needing repairs, but slowing down enough to stay in the pit is a crapshoot; one you will need to succeed in several times throughout the game.
With practice and patience, there’s enjoyment to be had in the steadfast speedways. The real question is, how badly do you, as Tom Cruise, want to win Nicole Kidman’s heart? If the answer is, “more than I care about my beautiful face or career,” take time and enjoy Days of Thunder. Love conquers all, even the race track.
PUBLISHER: Mindscape DEVELOPER: Argonaut (port by Beam Software)
GENRE: Racing RELEASE DATE: 10/1990 – (US), 04/25/91 – (EU)
ALSO AVAILABLE ON: Amiga, C64, GB, PC, Atari ST, ZX Spectrum