Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed came out in late 2012 and to my surprise nobody cared. I know this game came out near the end of 2012, but it came and left with a blip. No one spoke about it and it didn’t really get any criticism or praise, it just sort-of showed up, bowed it’s head and left. This is a shame because it’s really not that bad of a game.
It’s a familiar racing game with familiar racers. You can control a lot of different characters from different Sega games. And I cannot stress this enough, Wreck-it Ralph is a selectable character! How cool is that.
The game itself is varied with different gameplay styles and the vehicles themselves transform into a plane, boat or car, depending on the scenario and circumstances. It was a unique way of playing a racer and combined a lot of neat ideas into it. It’s not truly unusual to see boats in a racer (see Diddy Kong Racer and Wave Race) but it is unusual to see the tracks themselves transform as much as the racers did. The tracks are obviously what make the game really interesting as in one lap you’ll be in the air and the other you’ll be on a boat.
Yes, this is a Mario Kart knock off, but if you haven’t had your fix with Mario Kart Wii or Mario Kart 7 on the Nintendo 3DS then this is a very good “version” of the game. The power-ups aren’t as horrible as the Mario Kart series and the tracks aren’t repetitive, of course to truly appreciate this game you most likely have to be a Sega fan.
Why is that? Well the characters and tracks are based off of the Sega universe. You have the usual suspects like Sonic the Hedgehog, Tails the Fox, Knuckles the Echidna and so on, but you also have Beat from Jet Set Radio, B.D. Joe from Crazy Taxi and Ulala from Space Channel 5. So yes, the characters are loaded. Keep in mind that the tracks are also based off of stages or “themes” from popular Sega games like Golden Axe and Shinobi to name a few. If only there was a Comix Zone based level. That would be sweet.
The music and graphics aren’t bad either, I’m already a huge fan of Sega music, since well, I was a Sega kid. So the music hits right at home for me as it’s the usually remixes of old songs I’m familiar with as was the case with Sonic Generations. It’s definitely a great time racing through a track with the Sky Level Fortress song playing in the background from Sonic & Knuckles.
There were a lot of great titles that came out in 2012 but I feel like this one got snubbed because, really, why would Sonic need a car a second time? Just ignore that aspect of the game and pick it up, it really is a huge improvement from the first game and the levels are vastly improved. Sure the transformation section is really a bit of a gimmick but it’s still a fun little racer to take online or battle against your buddies on the couch. It varies the game up as well with having more than just races take place with battles and time trials as well. It’s honestly a good game that deserved a little more praise.