Monster Truck Madness is a radical and realistic racing simulation that puts gamers behind the wheel of the world's most powerful vehicles as they crush, splatter, jump, and roll their way to victory. Here is the guide to arm players with all the game's strategies and secrets. ... Read more
Customer Reviews (1)
More than a user manual
Inside Moves is the user manual for Microsoft's Monster Truck Madness, and as such, one has to wonder why it wasn't included with the retail game, or conversely, why the book isn't packed with an installation cd.Be that as it may, in order to appreciate this book you must first recognize and understand that Monster Truck Madness was first available for retail sale in nineteen ninety six, was two years in development (which pushes it back to nineteen ninety four) and was probably first conceived well before that time.When the game was finally released, it was a ground breaking advance in 3D graphics and multiplayer technology, and Tom's Hardware used it to develop the "first real world direct3d benchmark."The sequel, Monster Truck Madness 2, which came out shortly after the release of Monster Truck Madness, added to the game's legacy with the same basic components which were so far ahead of everything at the time that it's still being played and enjoyed by a thriving community even now some ten years after most games of the era have long since vanished.The content of Inside Moves runs approximately as follows:
The introduction hypes monster trucks and the game.
Chapter 1 - Talks about installation, system requirements, menus, performance tips, controllers and keyboard commands.Reading this chapter provides some amusement when reflecting on the quaint naivety regarding the speed and power of personal computers of the day.
Chapter 2 - Game and real truck characteristics, garage settings, tracks, handling and points scoring.
Chapter 3 - Driving school emphasizing a good start, cornering, dealing with terrain and water, crash recovery, and manual vs automatic transmission.The topics covered here can probably apply to any road simulation game.
Chapter 4 - Drag tracks and their background, the five tracks and the drag racing procedures are described in detail including qualifying, staging, the christmas tree light and the course layouts.
Chapter 5 - Circuit race philosophy, a blow-by-blow bump-by-bump description of the five tracks along with tips on improving lap times, and the in-game map and screen displays are also mentioned.Dry dry dry, there is only so many ways to say turn right, turn left.There is very little here that a racer couldn't discover just by playing the game.
Chapter 6 - Three rally tracks are treated much like the circuits only with a heavy emphasis on shortcuts.
Chapter 7 - Tournament play is briefly described but more important are the instructions for creating your own custom tournaments.This is the first hint that the game will be customizable by users rather than just tweaking and adjusting various settings.
Chapter 8 - Multiplayer racing.How to host and join races as well as the various types of hook up are described in detail, and key concepts are defined, explained and clarified.Also, several game features and technical tips are included.Sorry, no drags in multiplayer.
Chapter 9 - An infommercial recommending that you spend a lot of money on new hardware.
Chapter 10 - The almanac.Leaving the game behind, this gives a brief history of monster trucks and their origins as well as includes an interview with Bob Chandler, inventor of monster trucks and founder of Bigfoot.
Chapter 11 - Again, getting away from the game, this gives Eric Meagher's point of view on what it's like to make your living from driving a monster truck.
There is also a small glossary of terms and an index.
And that's the good news.The bad is that the book is plagued by typos and grammatical blunders, and the writing style is that of a junior high school student who possesses inside knowledge about the game.The amount of "useful" information is minimal, and at points the author describes the game and tracks as "aggravating."Chapters four, five and six could have been combined into a single chapter half the size of either of them since providing a verbal description of a three dimensional visual environment contributes nothing to the reader's store of knowledge, and is an annoying, arduous task besides.And, the tips and tricks about game play scattered throughout the book could have, and should have, been condensed into a page and a half reference sheet.And to top that off, microsoft and the msn gaming zone have not only abandoned the game but have taken active strides to discourage its use.
So why bother?Simple.Monster Truck Madness and Monster Truck Madness 2 once had one of the largest community of players of any game ever made, and the mtm community is still active today.Both games have had more user-made addons created for it than any other game (of any type) and all but a very few of them are still available for free download and use.Monster Truck Madness has also had as many support programs made for it as that of other games by its players, and new things are being developed all the time.Monster Truck Madness is the quintessential computer gaming experience.It offers something for everybody: from players and racers to artists and programmers, from the mathematically oriented to the whimsical and capricious, from hobbyists and tinkerers to demanding perfectionists, from explorers to cartographers, from game fans to monster truck fans, from young to old, from simple to complex, from any area of human experience to its opposite.And all of it is unrivaled in imagination and creativity, tradition and innovation, competition and camaraderie.
If Inside Moves had any pragmatic value in nineteen ninety six, it certainly doesn't now.Rather, its value today is its signifcance as an historical document for arguably the best game ever made for the PC, and it is steeped in nostalgic appeal for anybody who has ever had MTM come into, touch or affect their life in any way.And while it's true that it should have been packaged as the user manual for the original game, and that it wasn't reflects its publisher's greed, it is certainly worth the $1.99 that most resellers are currently asking for this collector piece.
... Read more