Taito - 1988
Machine: Arcade, and many others
This is another one ripe for a 3D makeover. I love driving games but I'm always longing for something a little less inane than just a clock to beat or cars to overtake. Chase HQ is just that, suddenly there's a purpose, suddenly there's a reason for crashing into the other cars - the other cars are crooks.
The premise is simple you work for the police in a turbo charged Porsche 911. You get called by the beautiful Nancy at Chase H.Q. and told who you’re chasing and away you go. You have 60 seconds to catch up to the bad guys, then you stick a cherry on your roof and you get another 60 to knock them off the road.
As with all Taito classics of this era a great original concept is just not enough, it's filled with loads of great little touches. The most fun being you partner who shouts advice at you, when you start he shouts "Let's go Mr Driver" or "Giddy up Boy!" Then during the action he starts saying things like "More, push it more!" and "Harder! Harder!" I leave you to make of that what you will! You've also got Nancy being oh so helpful over the radio, every other time you crash she says "If you keep messing around like that your time is gonna run out!" With all these back seat drivers it's a wonder you can catch these crooks at all.
Chase HQ is like Out Run with cops and robbers and you can't get much more fun than that. The original arcade machine is the one to emulate though yet again there is also a remarkable ZX Spectrum version.
Jakey 12 Mar '03
KLOV - Chase H.Q. page - The Killer List of Video Games has detailed info on many classic games.
Wikipedia's Chase H.Q. page - Lots of great information.