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Side by Side Special

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Title Screen

Side by Side Special

Developer: Taito
Publisher: Taito
Platform: PlayStation
Released in JP: November 11, 1997, December 11, 1999 (Special 2000)


GraphicsIcon.png This game has unused graphics.
TextIcon.png This game has unused text.
Carts.png This game has revisional differences.


ProtoIcon.png This game has a prototype article

Side by Side Special combines all cars and tracks featured in the two Side by Side arcade games, the predecessor to Battle Gear games, into one whole package, with some secret bonuses thrown in. Given the car and color choices of the JDM cars featured in the game, as well as the default high scores in two of the tracks, the game can be said as an unofficial Initial D video game.

Sub-Page

Read about prototype versions of this game that have been released or dumped.
Prototype Info


Unused Graphics

SBSS English Text.png
SBSS English Text Box.png

English course difficulties exist and gets loaded into the VRAM, complete with larger boxes to contain them. It seems that Taito had prepared for an international release for the game, since the arcade games also did; the English versions of Side by Side 2 use Beginner, Expert, Professional, Ace Driver, Special (in that order) as course difficulty labels. Normal might have been used in English version of the first Side by Side game to refer to the Summer course.

Interestingly, the "DEATHMATCH" text, used to refer to time trial races in the English version of Side by Side 2, does not exist at all, for some reason, either as a text or in graphics.

Unused Text

Car Listing

Some unused text strings are loaded into the RAM, all mentioning car names. Some of the cars had different specifications compared to what appears in the game (for example, the Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution IV that appears in the game is a GSR trim rather than RS, and the Honda NSX is the regular model instead of the NSX-R version). In both cases, there is also an obviously blatant Initial D reference, since the Fujiwara Tofu is mentioned by name.

In Side by Side Special: (0x59D84)

BNR32 SKYLINE GT-R
BCNR33 SKYLINE GT-R
RX7 FD3S RZ
RX7 FC3S
SILVIA KS
CIVIC SIR
HONDA NSX-R
TOYOTA SUPRA RZ
AE85 LEVIN
AE86 FUJIWARA TOUFU
DELTA HF INTEGRALE EVO
HONDA ODYSSEY
SUBARU LEGACY WAGON GTB
SUBARU IMPREZA WRX-RA STI3
MITSUBISHI LANCER RS EVO4
TOYOTA CELICA GT-FOUR WRC
NISSAN 180SX
NISSAN SILVIA Ks
HONDA ACCORD WAGON SIR
IMPREZA TYPE-RA STI2
LANCER EVO.3
TAITO BAN
TAITO 1BOX
TAITO TRACK

Some of the cars featured in this list, namely the Lancia Delta HF Integrale (the car's chassis number, L31E5, is mentioned in the credits as belonging to planning/direction staff Hiroyuki Sako), Honda Odyssey, Subaru Impreza WRX STI Version II, and Honda Accord Wagon SiR never appeared in any of the Side by Side or Battle Gear (the succeeding series to Side by Side series) games, although the Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution III does appear in the Battle Gear games.

In Side by Side Special 2000: (0x5CA48)

BNR32 SKYLINE GT-R
BCNR33 SKYLINE GT-R
RX7 FD3S RZ
RX7 FC3S
SILVIA KS
CIVIC SIR
HONDA NSX-R
TOYOTA SUPRA RZ
AE85 LEVIN
AE86 FUJIWARA TOUFU
SUBARU LEGACY WAGON GTB
SUBARU IMPREZA WRX-RA STI3
MITSUBISHI LANCER RS EVO4
TOYOTA CELICA GT-FOUR WRC
TAITO VAN
TAITO 1BOX
TAITO TRUCK

All the no-show cars are trimmed out, and the typo fixes to the Taito-branded secret cars (more on that later) also apply in the unused text.

Versus Mode

Versus mode is mentioned amongst the game mode select text at 0x6D138 (SBSS) and 0x70194 (SBSS2K). The game lacks support for two player racing, either through the second controller port or link cable.

Opening Movie Cutoff

Intro Video Cut Portion
SBSS OP Copyright.png

The last two seconds of the game's opening movie (which is totally not a Ryosuke Takahashi vs Seiji Iwaki race) following the fade to white contains a Taito copyright notice on the lower right, unseen because the game goes to the title screen after the fade to white.

Revisional Differences

Curiously, the files on Side by Side Special are dated October 30, 1997, while the files on Side by Side Special 2000 are dated November 4, 1997 (except for the SLPM file which is dated August 18, 1999).

SBSS Text Title.png
  • Before the Taito logo and the FMV, the original version of the game has the title of the game shown in plain text, which was removed in Special 2000, as it also appears in the opening movie.
Side by Side Special Side by Side Special 2000
SBSS Title.png SBSS Title 2K.png
  • The katakana subtitle was changed from red to white, and the "Press START Button" text is no longer completely all-caps. As part of the copyright year update, a comma was added after the first copyright year.
Side by Side Special Side by Side Special 2000
SBSS Taito Truck.png SBSS Taito Truck 2K.png
Side by Side Special Side by Side Special 2000
SBSS Taito Van.png SBSS Taito Van 2K.png
  • Engrish related to two of the three unlockable bonus cars were fixed in Special 2000.
Side by Side Special Side by Side Special 2000
SBSS Options.png SBSS Options 2K.png
  • Special 2000 adds support for the Dual Analog/DualShock controller, although only vibration is supported (can also be toggled in pause menu). The Options menu is also changed to use sentence case instead of all-caps.
Side by Side Special Side by Side Special 2000
SBSS Saving.png SBSS Saving 2K.png
  • The Memory Card load/save "Memory Card Access" graphic was replaced with a slight variation of the standard PS1 "checking Memory Card" message.
Side by Side Special Side by Side Special 2000
SBSS Pause.png SBSS Pause 2K.png
  • The pause screen was moved up to allow for the updated READY? text, and the option to resume and quit had their text expanded (in addition to the vibration setting mentioned above). Additionally, Restart and Quit Game now ask you to confirm whether to do so.
  • A trailer for Densha de GO! is included in the original version under the Information option in the main menu. This was removed in Special 2000.
  • Difficulty settings also affect AI difficulty in Special 2000, not just time limits.
(Source: Fatalita)
  • The starting time limits for the Special track from the first Side by Side were dropped, making the track harder (all times in seconds):
Difficulty Side by Side Special Side by Side Special 2000 Difference
Easy 75.0 70.0 -5.00
Medium 70.0 60.0 -10.00
Hard 65.0 50.0 -15.00
Very Hard 60.0 45.0 -15.00
  • The default fastest lap times were also dropped:
Course Side by Side Special Side by Side Special 2000 Difference (seconds)
Spring 0:55.00 0:45.00 -10.00
Summer 1:00.00 0:50.00 -10.00
Autumn 1:10.00 1:01.50 -8.50
Winter 1:10.00 0:59.00 -11.00
Special 1:15.00 1:09.00 -6.00
April 0:35.00 0:30.00 -5.00
March 0:55.00 0:52.00 -3.00
July 1:15.00 1:08.00 -7.00
October 1:40.00 1:34.00 -6.00
22:00 3:10.00 3:05.00 -5.00
June 2:50.00 2:31.00 -19.00
0:00 2:50.00 2:26.00 -24.00
2:00 2:30.00 1:57.00 -33.00

For July and October courses, the track names correspond to what it refers to in Side by Side 2 rather than in Side by Side Special. See the Oddities section for details.

  • During the ending credits for completing all ten courses from the first and second arcade games, Special 2000 adds an additional credit under "2D 3D Graphic Modelling" (for Special/Special 2000) for Tetsuya Watanabe, with listed car code as NA6, referring to first-generation Mazda Roadster/MX-5 Miata.

Oddities

Hmmm...
To do:
Do those belong in Bugs section?
Side by Side 2 Side by Side Special
SBS2 Mixup July.png SBSS Mixup July.png
Side by Side 2 Side by Side Special
SBS2 Mixup October.png SBSS Mixup October.png

For some reason, the course months of the July (night) and October (autumn) courses (originating from Side by Side 2) are switched around in Special. This was not fixed in Special 2000.

Side by Side Special Side by Side Special 2000
SBSS Tachometer.png SBSS Tachometer 2K.png

In addition, when racing in night tracks, the shading colors of the digital part of the speedometer and gear indicator becomes red in Special 2000. (There is another revisional change here: the "READY" text is rendered using in-game font in Special 2000, instead of an unique graphic)