The first game came out in 1991. In it, you play a pair of explorers who manage to locate a priceless artifact. However just as they get their hands on it, the floor collapses underneath them where they land in a minecart and get rolling. Pretty soon pursued by natives and rival treasure hunters.
The game was noticeable for being a motion ride, an arcade cabinet with a seat that bobbed and weaved with the action on screen. The game was played with two joysticks that controlled the cross-hairs on screen. Oddly the game never used a life bar, rather the cart and the indicator on the top of the screen showing the distance between your cart and the boss serve as the health indicators. Attacks damaged it until the cart was rendered unusable, allowing your pursers to catch up and finish you off. The game included four stages each with their own pursuers who served as the bosses.
Five years later came Rail Chase 2 (1996) which of course updated the graphics to 3D. The time around the game is set in 1938 and you play as two adventurers who run afoul of the EKKL empire. They make their escape in a rail cart with the empire's army in hot pursuit. Besides the graphical update, the game allows you to switch the tracks letting you take different paths, allowing some great replay value. The game also uses standard life bars as well. Otherwise, it likewise used the motion ride seat up as its predecessor.
- Art Shift: The first game begins with a cutscene drawn in a very sketchy, no color style similar to A Ha's "Take on Me" video until an earthquake suddenly happens and drops the two treasure hunters into the minecart which shifts to the game proper.
- The Computer Is a Cheating Bastard: There's no way to get through this game without taking a hit due to the multiple enemies on screen.
- Cool Train: The one that chases you in the first and last level of the 2nd game.
- Have a Nice Death: In the first game, whenever your cart got too damaged to continue. You get a first person view of your pursuer catching up and delivering the killing blow.
- Life Meter: Averted in the first game as your cart and the indicator on top showing your distance from the boss are your meters and the more damage you took, the closer the cart would be pushed towards the boss. The second game plays it straight, however.
- Minecart Madness: The game!
- Putting on the Reich: The EKKL empire in the second game is pretty much the Third Reich in all but name and color. They use the same uniforms (although most of the goons wear bright blue uniform), vehicles, and everything. Even the flyer◊ depicts a guy wearing a Nazi-esque uniform and helmet.
- Spiritual Successor: The first Jurassic Park arcade game is considered one for this series, as it uses the same format as the first Rail Chase game.