Ever wanted to play a game where you’re mocked on your trade deals by Sonic and his friends? No? Well SEGA seem to think you want to.
Team Sonic Racing then, a Sonic and pals kart racing game brought to you by Sumo Digital, the same Sumo Digital that brought everyone Sonic Racing Transformed, it’ll baffling beyond words if you didn’t realise that right away as the games play exactly the same, all down to the smallest detail – all the way down to the wonky drifting mechanic.
If you’re someone who hasn’t been to a gaming convention like EGX before, let me walk you through it; you bumble around an overcrowded arena looking for something to play and when something does take your fancy it has around 15 minutes to impress you – After around 5 minutes of gameplay, I realised that Team Sonic Racing isn’t the game for me.
As previously mentioned, TSR uses the exact same handling model as Sonic and Allstar Racing Transformed, so if you mastered the previous game and wanted more of the same, you’ll have no troubles getting to grips with this title. TSR also includes big jumps that allow stunts to be completed and once again moving the right stick in different directions will make Sonic and his buddies complete barrel rolls frontflips and backflips, you can also perform several flips in a jump for more of a speed boost, and you can build up power meters to unlock a super ability. This ability can range from the super-useless to the ever-so-slightly useful, all these exact features same were recycled right off the Racing Transformed cutting room floor – So far, so Sonic.
So that’s the handling, moving onto the rest of the gameplay – it’s a mess. The main selling point of TSR is selecting a team instead of just a character (for example, if you select Sonic, you also inherit Tails and Knuckles) and you can trade your weapons that you pick up throughout the race with your team – okay in theory but in practice, the idea is all over the place. When picking up a weapon, a teammate can call out in the form of text at the top of the screen saying they want the weapon you’ve just picked up and will tell you the button you need to press to trade, then they’ll tell you the button again, and then again, and then start sending passive aggressive messages, and then finally, make you feel guilty for not passing the weapon to them – Not sure if this is a racing game or a relationship at this point.
The idea of TSR is baffling to say the least, the mix of cartoon racing with iconic characters chucked in with mobile eBay is simply executed terribly, this is due to the confusing nature that the game is presented in and the many, many different features that the game attempts to chuck at the player as soon as they sit down. Although TSR is being judged on a 10-minute tech demo, it gives the feeling that all the cards have been chucked out onto the table, and the full game won’t have much else to offer.