Speed Racer: The Videogame
|Speed Racer: The Videogame|
Virtuos (Nintendo DS)
Glu Mobile (Mobile)
|Publisher(s)||Warner Bros. Games|
Glu Mobile (Mobile)
|Platform(s)||Mobile phone, Wii, Nintendo DS, PlayStation 2|
Speed Racer: The Videogame is a racing video game developed by Sidhe Interactive for the PlayStation 2 and Wii consoles, by Virtuos for the Nintendo DS, and by Glu Mobile for mobile phones; and published by Warner Bros. Games and Glu Mobile. It is a tie-in to the 2008 film. Speed Racer The actors from the movie reprise their role on the video game counterpart. The mobile version was released in April 2008, and the Wii and Nintendo DS versions of the game were released on May 6, 2008, while the PlayStation 2 version was released on September 16, 2008, alongside the DVD release.
The game is a racing game in the vein of the F-Zero series, including tracks full of odd twists, turns and loops impossible by realistic standards, set in five vibrant, exotic locations (six in the PS2 version). The goal of the game is not only to win first place in each race, but also to have the most points by the end of the cup to win the competition. Points can be earned by placing high during races, but also by performing stunts and, most commonly, bashing into and destroying other racers with the use of car acrobatics, called "car-fu" in the game. Driving well (i.e., not hitting walls, avoiding other drivers) as well as car-fu rewards the player with a boost. Four boosts may be collected this way, and may be used at any time. If all four boosts are used at once, the driver enters a state called "The Zone" in which they travel more than twice as fast as their regular top speed, and any cars hit by players in this state are significantly damaged and/or destroyed. Players are also invulnerable while in this state. Boosts may alternatively be used to repair the car by refilling the health meter. A full boost will repair half of the health meter, while a partially filled boost meter will only repair a smaller amount of the meter. The player can distinguish the vehicle's health by the gauge on the HUD, but also the color of the jet at the rear of the vehicle: if it is bluish-white, the car is fine; if it is red and smoking, it is severely damaged; if the camera suddenly starts to zoom out, the car is about to explode. If this happens, the player must quickly repair their car, or else it will, in fact, explode. If the player's car explodes, the player will re-spawn nearby; however, the brief delay between the car exploding and re-spawning allows many other drivers to pass the player, causing a large dent in their ranking.
Each version of the game has its own unique control method. The PS2 version uses a standard control setup, where the buttons are used for driving and attacking, while the DS uses the stylus in conjunction with the touchscreen. The Wii version can be controlled by holding the Wii Remote sideways, and also with the Wii Wheel peripheral, and is controlled by a combination of button input and motion controls, such as waving the Wii Remote to the left or right to make the vehicle quickly shunt in that direction, or performing various areal stunts including backflips and frontflips.
There are a total of 20 selectable characters from the film in the game (25 in the PS2 version), each with their own unique vehicle. Each character also has a specific rival, whom, should the player destroy or finish the race before, award bonus points. For example, Speed Racer's rival is Jack "Cannonball" Taylor. In certain gameplay modes, players can enter alliances with other racers, who will attempt to interfere with the player's rival. Performing "car-fu" on allies will penalize the player, however. Each character's car has different stats, of which there are 4 in total.
The original musical soundtrack of the Speed Racer video game was composed by Winifred Phillips and produced by Winnie Waldron. It has received positive reviews. Reviewer Sam Bishop of IGN wrote, "The music in the game happily bounces back and forth from vaguely tribal, ambient tracks to more driving, aggressive sounding electronica loops."
|7.||"Rev it Up"||4:34|
|10.||"Cosmopolis Grand Prix"||2:32|
|11.||"Under the Hood"||4:36|
The DS version received "generally favorable reviews", while the PlayStation 2 and Wii versions received "average" reviews, according to the review aggregation website Metacritic. In Japan, Famitsu gave it a score of one five, one seven, and two sixes for the DS version. Similar to the film, the game has also garnered many positive reviews from fans over time, though more obscure.
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