Saturday, December 24, 2011

Merry Christmas!

As the hours count down towards Christmas, it's time to kick back, take it easy, and relax with friends and family. Well, that and dive into a gift or two. So wherever you're spending the holidays, make the most of it, because you only get one day each year. Happy Holidays!

Since this is an automotive blog, here's an automobile to look at. Countach, anybody?

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Destroy More Cars

The world of online computer games is a vast world of time consuming adventures created to fight off boredom. There are games for the shooter, the racer, the strategist, the warrior, and everyone else. For car lovers, there are plenty of games to choose from, but most are boring and dreary. However, I've stumbled across a truly entertaining game every car lover should find amusing. It's called "Destroy More Cars" and it stands above its competitors.

The premise of the game is to launch your car off a ramp into other cars in a large arena. It's a simple formula. Choose your car and paintjob, and adjust the angle of the ramp. Then hit the gas and watch as chaos ensues! For a free internet game that requires no downloading, this is actually pretty fun. The cars are all parodies of real vehicles, so it can be fun to find your personal favorite. Let's look at the lineup.

1953 Isi Isetta
This may be one of the game's smallest cars, but don't be fooled. It can pack a serious punch if used right.

1961 Moni Copper
Another lightweight contender, the "Moni" is a nimble vehicle. It's unable to do as much damage as the bigger vehicles, but it makes up for that with its speed and acceleration.

1963 Curvy Tingray
The vintage "Tingray" is a very well-rounded sports car. It's American V8 is wrapped in a very iconic design that looks decidedly graceful, even in midair.

1963 London Taxi
The easily recognizable London Cab is a fairly sizable automobile. It's big and heavy, but not too slow. The acceleration is slow at first, but it comes around when you need it. This is really fun car to smash.

1963 Oston Merton BD5
The "BD5" is a very nice vehicle to see in a game, and this one is one of the better vehicles you'll unlock. It's quick, sporty and fast, but still big enough to do damage. Merton, Oston Merton.

1965 Wolksvagen Van
A solid contender, this classic van is stylish but tough enough to dish out some heavy hits. Plus it's available in hippie bus paint colors.

1969 Rodge Larger
 The "Rodge Larger" is, in theory, the perfect car to use. It's jumping skills are world renowned. As a muscle car, it's quick but heavy, giving you a good, well-rounded vehicle.

1972 Daytona Sprint
 The Daytona Sprint is a typical sprint car. Very light, and very fast. It doesn't do as much damage as the heavier vehicles, but it's still a good vehicle to use for those really big jumps.

1974 Fancia Startos
 The "Startos" is a purebred rally legend, being lightning fast and super lightweight. Get behind the wheel of this machine, and victory is practically guaranteed.

1979 Citrus DS
 The DS is one of the most dependable cars in the game. It's size allows it to deal out strong hits, but since it's an ambulance, it also has considerable speed as well. This is usually your best bet when you need to hit a lot of cars and take them all out.

1981 Leno 5 Turbo
 The "Leno" 5 Turbo is a compact car with a comparatively massive supply of horsepower. It's quick and light, but its size is its downfall. All in all, it still manages to be one of the game's better cars.

1981 Roycey Rolls Cornish
 The car names in this game are pure genius! Anyway, the "Roycey Rolls" is a heavy hitter, but isn't big enough to be slowed down by weight. This is a fairly well-balanced car.

1982 Dalareon DMC
 This has got to be my personal favorite, and for good reason. It's "lightning" fast, and delivers a massive punch to anything that stands in its way. The flame trails are another nice touch.

1982 Suki Jeep
 Based on the Suzuki Samurai, this SUV is aggresive and tough, but still relatively small. It serves as a very balanced vehicle to use. Don't worry, you can change the color if you're not big on pink.

1983 MBW N3
 The "N3" is a good beginner's car, along with the "Larger." Instead of brute force, this one has more speed, sending your car farther faster. It's not the toughest vehicle, but it gets the job done.

1987 Furore 40F
 Possibly the game's fastest car, the "40F" is essentially a rocket with four wheels. A side effect of that speed is the fact that you'll hit your target with the force of an artillery barrage. Sadly, sometimes you might wind up shooting over your target if you aren't careful.

1988 Ice-Cream Van
Based on a classic Bedford, the Ice-Cream Van is a strong hitter, but it's also slow. If you can get it airborne, you have a decent chance at winning.

1992 Dumb V
 The "Dumb V" is a strong vehicle. It's brute force will decimate opponents, and it has enough performance to be usable. Not the fastest or strongest, but consistently effective.

2007 Horshe Canneye
 Lastly, we have the "Horshe" SUV. It's big and heavy, but with a lot of horsepower. This is a great choice of vehicle for any demolition-based needs you may have.

Intrigued? If you feel like giving this a go, click here. All pictures are courtesy of Now go Destroy More Cars!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Need for Speed: The Run

As of late, the Need for Speed franchise has taken a new direction in an attempt to reinvent itself. So far it's working quite well, with great new entries coming out at a rapid pace. Titles such as Hot Pursuit and Shift 2 Unleashed have done very well, and the latest entry, Need for Speed: The Run, is hoping to continue the trend. The question is, can it live up to the new standard?

Great cars and great environments.

The new game's development was led by Black Box, who have a reputation with Need for Speed. Previous games in the franchise produced by the company were notorious for strange storylines that caused the games to suffer. After the admittedly poor quality of Undercover, to hear that Black Box was in charge of another NFS game was startling. Would it be a success, or would it crash and burn?

San Francisco's iconic hills are best tackled with some American muscle.

The answer is success. The Run is an incredibly fun game to play. It creates a tangible, if not a bit far-fetched, storyline that truly engages the player. The premise of the game is a totally illegal race from San Francisco to New York City. Over 200 competitors in souped-up cars are racing all-out in hopes of winning the grand prize, $25 million. You play as Jack Rourke, an expert driver who needs the cash to settle some problems with the mob.

New York wouldn't be complete without taxi cabs.

Over the course of the game, you race through the USA, which is divided into stages. Each race increases your position, with the goal of being in first at New York. Environments include snowy mountains, desert highways, urban cities, and country backroads. With a little help from Battlefield 3's Frostbite 2 engine, the graphics are incredible. This game is a visual masterpiece.

Making the Duke boys proud.

Naturally, every race needs cars, and The Run has a truly unique lineup. Classic muscle cars compete with tuned imports, and supercars duel with exotics. There's something for everybody. Unfortunately, almost half of the cars are modified variations of other cars. There are at least three Datsun Fairlady Z's, for example. As much as I like Datsuns, that space could have gone to another entirely new car. Still, the included cars are very good, with cars such as the Lamborghini Aventador, Pontiac Firebird Formula, and BMW M3 GTS.

The 1969 Ford Mustang Boss 302. A living legend.

Handling is a big concern for racing games. Some go with ultra realistic simulation handling, while others go with an arcadish style. The Run falls neatly in the middle, offering a realistic yet enjoyable setup that sets the game apart from it's competitors. As usual, the game features a boost system for a little extra performance, and a respawn feature in case you accidently clip a telephone pole at 200 mph. Ouch.

This is my kind of bullfight.

Online features for the game are a blast, allowing you to compete against other players for rewards like new cars, profile icons, and bonus points. Playlists dedicated to specific car types help you play how you want to play, and teaming up with friends gives you extra rewards. A single-player Challenge Series consists of races and events that are guaranteed to keep you entertained. There's plenty to do in a game like this.

The police will often come at you with everything they've got, so stay sharp.

Now every game has its shortcomings, and The Run is definitely not excluded. The storyline feels short, making the player wish there was more. The car list is occasionally repetitive, and some tracks seem way harder than others. However, the pros outweigh the cons. The modes are diverse and enthralling, the action is intense, and the visuals are often breathtaking. If you want a racing game, The Run is a great candidate. But don't take my word for it, go out and play it for yourself!


Monday, November 7, 2011

My Top 10 Favorite Famous 4x4's

First of all, keep in mind that all of this is purely my opinion. I'm not saying that any of the following vehicles are "the best." I'm merely showing you my personal group of favorite 4x4s from movies and TV. There were plenty of competitors, but only 10 could be chosen. So, with that in mind, here are my Top 10 favorite famous 4x4's. There are a lot of f's in that sentence, aren't there?

10. The Road Warrior F-100 "Cobra"
This heavily modified Ford had a role in the popular Mel Gibson film The Road Warrior. To capture the movie's post-apocalyptic look, the vehicle needed some peculiar modifications. Hood-mounted spotlights are cool, as are the Cobra decals on each side. A boat windshield makes for an interesting touch, and the speargun does plenty of damage. While this film had an array of dune buggies, and similar 4x4's, this one stands out above the rest.

9. The Lost World Mercedes Benz ML
In the sequel to Jurassic Park, the main characters need to traverse tough terrain and avoid ferocious dinosaurs. Naturally, a rugged 4x4 is a neccessity, and the two Mercedes ML SUV's used in the film fit that description quite nicely. Both vehicles receive camouflage paint, custom 4x4 modifications, and other tactical features. Sadly, neither of the vehicles survive the island. However, they get some decent action on-screen, and make a great addition to this countdown.

8. Ace Ventura: When Nature Calls S-10 Monster Truck
Jim Carrey is all-out Jim Carrey in this somewhat humorous film. The film's vehicles are the real stars, however. Several classic Land Rovers are used and abused, as well as several Jeeps and a Willys or two. But this S-10 Monster Truck used by Carrey's character is definitely the coolest. Spotlights, giant tires, and exhaust pipes sprouting through the hood make this vehicle look like nothing else. Plus there's the zebra paint scheme, just to liven things up. The movie is okay, but this truck really makes it.

7. Fast Five Gurkha
Tough guy Dwayne "The Rock" Johnson plays federal agent Luke Hobbs in the fifth entry to the adrenaline-pumping Fast and Furious series. To track down escaped fugitive Dominic Toretto, Hobbs needs to chase, smash, and shoot his way through Rio de Janeiro. So he gets behind the wheel of an Armet Gurkha F5. Throughout the film, this machine is plowing through walls, dodging explosions, and frightening the general public wherever it goes. All in all, it's an unstoppable force worthy of this list.

6. The Rock Hummer
Sean Connery is cool. Hummers are cool. Sean Connery in a Hummer? Incredibly cool. In The Rock, Sean Connery "borrows" this sweet Hummer to evade Nicholas Cage, who gives pursuit in a yellow Ferrari F355 Spider. The chase takes place in San Francisco, which is ideal for an interesting chase scene. Out of all the Hummers that could have made the list, this one stands out. It plows through a taxi cab, jumps through a truck full of bottled water, crushes a Beetle, obliterates a meter maid cart, and causes the destruction of a trolley. It's absolutely unstoppable. This is definitely one of the coolest vehicles on the list.

5. The Terminator Chevy C-10
This customized black Chevy is about as ominous as a vehicle can get. As a matter of fact, two other 1980's films, Nightmares and The Hitcher, both feature black Chevy trucks with spotlights mounted on them. In this movie, though, the truck is used by Kyle Reese and Sarah Connor as they attempt to escape the Terminator, who is pursuing them on a motorcycle. In the end, the truck gets totaled, but that doesn't make it any less cool.

4. Raiders of the Lost Ark Mercedes Benz G5
In Raiders of the Lost Ark, Harrison Ford stars as the iconic Indiana Jones. A key scene involves Jones hijacking the Ark of the Covenant from a large Nazi convoy consisting of a black staff car, the truck holding the ark, a small troop car with a mounted machine gun, and a motorcycle with a sidecar. The troop car is custom-built for the film, and based loosely on a Mercedes Benz G5. The above picture shows a model of the car due to the fact that it is hard to see the vehicle fully in the film. In the end, it gets shoved off a cliff. This car and the truck later reappeared in the film Top Secret!

3. Fall Guy GMC K-2500
In The Fall Guy, Colt Seavers is a man with two very different lives. On one hand, he's a stuntman, so he knows a thing or two about cars. However, he also works as a bounty hunter, which means he needs a tough ride to rely on. So what is his ride of choice? It's a modified GMC K-2500 pickup, and it's also number three on this list. This truck is incredibly tough, and has many features characteristic to custom pickups of the era. Lift kit, spotlights, brushguard, rollbar, it's all there. It's stylish, yet simultaneously effective. Which means it's got enough going for it to make the top three. This is one cool truck.

2. Tremors Jeep Gladiator
This is possibly one of the coolest vehicles ever, in my opinion at least. In the light-hearted monster movie Tremors, a subterranean creature is slaughtering anything that moves in a small valley town. Valentine McKee and Earl Bassett are a hardworking pair of handymen who are forced to help the townspeople survive the underground onslaught. Their vehicle needs to be a tough truck capable of navigating the rural landscape with ease. The 1963 Jeep Gladiator they drive is perfect for the job. Not only does it survive the movie, it reappears in the sequel. This is one of the coolest trucks ever to be onscreen, and definitely earns its spot as number two.

1. Twister Jeep J-10
I know, I know, ANOTHER Jeep truck? Repetitive it may be, but something about the design of these vehicles is just so perfectly representative of 4x4's. Rugged and dependable, yet stylish in their own special way. Anyway, in Twister, stormchaser Jo Harding drives this awesome yellow Jeep J-10 Honcho. It gets used early-on in the film to chase a tornado, but sadly it ends up totaled. That said, the action involving this vehicle before its destruction is quite thrilling. It has a host of modifications that are realistic and feasible for an actual car to have, yet enhance its off-road specialization. In short, it's my personal first place 4x4.

So that's that. Many vehicles had to be cut, all of them good. The Dukes of Hazzard Jeep, the Road House Bigfoot, and the Sahara Cherokee were all close, but were weeded out towards the end. Overall, I'm satisfied with the list, although I'm sure everybody has changes they would make. If you have any suggestions or comments, let me know. And finally, a big thank you to for providing the pictures. Stay tuned, there's much more to come!

Sunday, October 23, 2011

In Hot Pursuit

Driving a Lamborghini through a suburb at over 150 mph is, well, a bit unrealistic. Luckily, we have videogames so that we can be unrealistic. The following pictures are taken from Need for Speed: Hot Pursuit, a fairly recent and undeniably fun game that allows you to put supercar against supercar, and take part in dramatic police pursuits without risking jail time or having to worry about fuel or insurance costs. It's a thrilling release from the confines of reality. So, without further ado, here are some pictures that will make your motor run.

This police-spec Dodge Challenger is great for burning some digital rubber.

It's a well-known fact that most snakes thrive in the desert.

Have you ever wondered what police officers do while they're off-duty?

The perfect trifecta: A supercar, a giant house, and a private helicopter.

An aerial view of a Porsche 918 as it hits the nitrous.

The game really lives up to the title of 'Hot Pursuit'.

A bright orange Camaro is a good choice for going very fast.

A Dodge Challenger and a fighter jet. What a fantastic combination.

Head-to-head racing is one thing this game does exceptionally well.

Police chases are exhilarating and dangerous, but also very entertaining.

The cops have some pretty serious machinery, like this gorgeous Lamborghini Reventon.

Fast cars, beautiful scenery, and vast quantities of fun make this game a must-play for anybody who has a need for speed or a heavy right foot. And considering the price of a REAL McLaren F1, it's a pretty serious bargain that you'll definitely want to take for a spin.