The company Sumo Digital and publisher Sega continued to develop its brilliant racing series, which will be continued in the face of Team the Sonic Racing – this time for the PS4, the Xbox the One and the Nintendo Switch.
If past franchise projects were not limited to Sonic, offering a set of characters, speed cars and tracks including from other Sega series, then the new game concentrates exclusively on the blue hedgehog universe. Do not wait for the appearance of Ryo Hazuki, Ulaly, Knights and incomprehensible heroes from the PC games of the company.
In addition, the developers cut out all the sections with the transformation of fireballs, which strained us not the most responsive management and not the most successful structure in the last part. All this allowed the studio to pay more attention to the basic aspects of design.
But this does not mean that there are no fresh solutions in the project. The races in Team Sonic Racing are held in the format of team races of three participants, so you are helped by two more pilots. In career mode, they are at the mercy of artificial intelligence. The one who drives ahead creates a bright trail that speeds up the race cars of the party members if they follow him for a while. Additionally, you can distribute your acceleration teammates, if you touch them on the track.
The developers added three fixed specializations to the characters, which add a bit of uniqueness to the characters. Someone can punch through special partitions, opening up additional paths. Someone does not slow down if they fall on the grass. And someone has an extra bonus to speed.
The heroes who have fallen behind are asked to exchange items with you that can be obtained randomly from the capsules on the track. This will help increase their chance of getting ahead. But command acceleration-attack works especially well – sometimes this ability can be accumulated two times per race.
The game focuses on the joint actions of the characters, and to win the championships, you now need to get the maximum number of points, which are summed up, based on the rating of each party member. If you come first, and the rest of the squad are in the last place, then you can lose your opponents on points. Fortunately, AI works adequately and frankly does not stupid. And in multiplayer, everything depends on the ability of your friends to hold the joystick in their hands.
Passing races and gaining stars, you advance on the world map and open new races, including the mission to shoot out, travel through targets and tasks where you need to collect rockets and destroy hundreds of emerging enemies.
Gameplay and User Experience
In turn, R-medals allow you to get replacement parts for the car and other bonuses in a special menu that resembles the classic section with Lunchboxes. It is designed as a capsule machine. Perhaps, initially, Sega was planning to have microtransactions, but after scandals and hype in the press, cut them out of the project. At the moment, you can buy new “boxes” only for the R-medals that you earn as you progress through the events.
Additional actions will help you discover new routes on the map, which often involve challenging single time trials. Challenges are made well – thanks largely to non-standard mechanics. For example, in certain missions points can be earned only if you collect classic gold rings without using Drift. But if you drive through them in the drift, then instead of points you will get bonus time. Of course, if you do not have enough time, it is impossible to collect the necessary number of points and pass the test. Therefore, you have to adapt to the situation, finely balancing between the two modes of driving. To do this is quite interesting.
Almost always you have several paths to the passage of the next world – some of the events can be skipped. Given the fact that the classic races are noticeably easier to test, the developers are pushing you to open and go through the usual race. Otherwise, the dynamics of career advancement collapse: you can go through a huge piece of the campaign by a fan, and then get stuck for an hour to complete the challenging challenge with the necessary result.
There are 21 tracks in the game – some locations are new, others came from previous parts of the series. But even this value was not enough for designers not to repeat. As a result, formally, of course, you are moving along the map to other areas of the world, but there, to the great surprise, you find all the same levels. Because of this, a sense of progress is lost. Thanks at least for the fact that you are not bothered by the endless chatter of characters, as there are almost no dialogs in Team Sonic Racing.
Nevertheless, the authors still update the composition of the tracks in each world. The atmospheric race through a broken clock tower with gears flying in space and the unexpected appearance of ghosts turned out to be very spectacular. Or level in the clouds with jumping on balloons. The truth is felt it is quite secondary. All this we have already seen in Mario Kart 7on the Nintendo 3DS back in 2011.
Opening up more and sparer parts, the understanding comes that they are largely useless since they do not provide real advantages or are visually very similar to each other. Adjusting the race cars of Sonic and his friends, I added only a couple of new parts and left the rest of the car unchanged.
To the subjects that fall on the slopes, there are also a few questions. There is no excitement in the fight for capsules with question marks, as they are too quickly reborn right in front of you. Moreover, the developers did not make interesting attacking paver-ups. Some of them work crookedly and do not hit the targets, even if these targets are located two meters from your character. Therefore, more often rejoice in the loss of additional acceleration. On the other hand, for someone, it may even be a plus.
You can increase the chance of dropping more powerful improvements, but it spends special cards that fall out of Lutboks, and there is no desire to dig into the menu for a ghostly advantage.
To make the gameplay more variable, developers sometimes add some changes at the mid-race levels. In some places it looks great, like water that starts flowing out of pipes in the middle of the track, forcing the race participants to maneuver. And somewhere – very stupid, like stone columns emerging from nowhere – sometimes they can be driven around, but often they completely block the road. If you do not have the same rockets, then, in any case, you hit the stones and lose all the rings and speed.
Graphics and Features
Multiplayer offers the search for regular and rating matches, their own lobbies with a convenient invitation system and a friends lobby. You can choose the team and the usual race, difficulty levels, the number of AI on the track, the rules and the location itself. But the mode is not finalized. It is not uncommon for cars to teleport along the highway because of terrible lags. One time I was driving second, but suddenly several players teleported from the very finish line in front of me and I took ninth place …
It is sometimes impossible to leave the multiplayer normally since the game can show the screen for a long time with the results of the race in complete silence. In this case, you have to restart the project from the PS4 menu.
Graphics, in general, is very uneven. In the frame now and then there are nice plans with beautiful lighting and good work with materials, but too often you see flat blurry textures and a dirty color palette. It seems that the project was originally created for the past generation of consoles, and then quickly adapted to modern systems. In turn, monstrous pixel shadows, which on some levels are too noticeably loaded right in front of you, refer to games with 3DSand PSVITA.
If you play one, then Team Sonic Racing runs at 60 FPS with occasional slowdowns on the PS4 Pro. In the split-screen mode, it is very difficult to play because of the brakes – in this case, there is no need to speak about any stable freyreyte. Which is very strange, given the multiplayer orientation of the project and outdated graphics for a whole generation.
In this case, you can not say that the game strains its visual design. Trails please with good design. Locations have become wider, which adds fun to the gameplay with long drifts where you can pull off the main road, ram the wall and open a new path. In addition, physics itself seems to be more successful than in the previous game, although it does not reach the top representatives of the genre.
The musical arrangement is pleasant, but not remembered. The translation into Russian is well done if you forget about the monstrous names of the tracks. VISP SIRKUIT, WAYL LAGUNA, and TURBAN LUP - this is something from the era of Fargus, the Seventh Wolf and the burning games for PS1.
Team Sonic Racing is a fun arcade race with familiar characters from childhood, good track design and an emphasis on team play, which suffers from secondary, outdated graphics, lagging multiplayer and small rough edges. Some of the problems should be fixed with patches, and if you are a fan of the genre, you can try. But do not wait for revelations.