This game, along with Killer Instinct, were the big arcade games that promised all the sorts of amazing things that would be possible on the Nintendo 64. And thankfully they were good games as well as coin-hungry tech demos.
I actually liked Cruis’n USA a lot in the arcades, even before I discovered the topically amusing hidden cars. It had long winding roads, varied locations and a great sensation of speed – it was the closest we could get to a new Out Run in the ’90s.
It was a popular thing to do to bash Cruis’n, especially the slightly cut down Nintendo 64 version, but I think people were unfairly comparing it to more serious racing games like Gran Turismo and even Daytona USA. Take it on as a bit of a mindless drive and you’re going to have more fun with it.
Oh and hey! Remember O.J. Simpson? Ah good times.