New International Track & Field

New International Track & Field

You probably have one overriding memory of the original Track & Field arcade game: pain.

Chances are that it was your first encounter with agonising finger blisters and the dull, rasping throb of repetitive strain injury, a condition that didn't even get a name other than "stop moaning, you pansy" until many years later. International Track & Field asked you to do one simple thing: hammer buttons very fast to win. It did this with a torturer's grin. "I'm just going to drip this water on your head, okay?"

For the perhaps-inevitable pre-Olympics rebirth of the franchise, developer Sumo Digital has changed things. The game is on a handheld, it doesn't involve pressing buttons any more (unless you really want to), and it isn't quite as simple as it used to be. One thing, however, remains consistent down through the years: pain.

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New International Track & Field

Scrub for victory!

New International Track & Field never strays all that far from the old International Track & Field. It's a game where you hammer the buttons (or flick the stylus) as fast as possible to win, occasionally breaking up the action with events that call for timed button presses to jump hurdles or take breaths. Launching to celebrate the 25th anniversary of Track & Field, the new version is a DS-only title that's been put together by the chaps at Sumo Digital - the Sheffield studio responsible for OutRun and Virtua Tennis arcade conversions in recent years - so there's another reason to take an interest, as we did when Konami asked us to jog to Yorkshire for a look.