TEAM SONIC RAC­ING

Sega’s lat­est bat­tle racer pulls into po­si­tion, but with­out the sup­port­ing cast

PlayStation Official Magazine (UK) - - CONTENT -

Sonic & All-Star Rac­ing Trans­formed was one of the few de­cent kart rac­ers on PlayS­ta­tion, a me­chan­i­cally sound bat­tle racer span­ning land, sea, and air, set across wildly themed tracks from IPs as var­ied as Sonic and Golden Axe.

Sumo Dig­i­tal’s lat­est Sega-themed racer, Team Sonic Rac­ing, fo­cuses on Sonic and his com­pan­ions, and re­stricts the ac­tion to kart rac­ing rather than com­pet­ing in more out­landish ve­hi­cles. In place of the eclec­tic mad­ness of the last game is a new hook: each race is team-based, as you and two other play­ers share items, speed boosts, and points. The team with the most points at the end (in other words, the high­est com­bined fin­ish­ing po­si­tion) wins.

It’s an in­ter­est­ing idea, giv­ing a rare twist to a tra­di­tion­ally staid genre. Closely fol­low in a team­mate’s slip­stream, for ex­am­ple, and you get a speed boost. Or if you’re lead­ing the pack, why not send your buddy that pro­jec­tile power-up you don’t need? Pull off enough team moves like these, and you can ex­e­cute a pow­er­ful ‘Ul­ti­mate Boost’ that hurtles the lot of you to­wards the fin­ish line.

This feels fine in ac­tion, and could re­ally flour­ish in the 12-player four-team on­line mul­ti­player. But what we’ve seen so far – just two tracks – lacks the ab­sur­dity and un­pre­dictabil­ity of its pre­de­ces­sor, leav­ing things feel­ing bland, a lit­tle grounded, with only the cast of Sonic for com­pany. Here’s hop­ing more may­hem is just round the next cor­ner.

“PULL OFF ENOUGH TEAM MOVES, AND YOU CAN EX­E­CUTE AN ‘UL­TI­MATE BOOST’ THAT HURTLES YOUR TEAM FOR­WARDS.”

Why is Tails the slow­est? Be­cause he’s only one Miles Prower! (Hey, where are you go­ing?…)

The team-based sys­tem will keep things ex­cit­ing, de­spite the lack of char­ac­ters from Sega’s other IPs.

Above The team­play is a wel­come twist on the tra­di­tional for­mula, en­cour­ag­ing com­mu­ni­ca­tion beyond the usual screams as­so­ci­ated with bat­tle rac­ing.

Above You can’t cre­ate char­ac­ters, but you can cus­tomise ex­ist­ing ones.

Above The tracks we played in the hands-on felt a lit­tle rote.

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