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WeView: Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed

Hedgehogs in disguise.

A few weeks ago we looked at F1 Race Stars for WeView, and it’s safe to say that it didn’t do too well. This week we’re going to take a look at its direct competitor, Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed. The games literally released the same day in the EU, so it seems like a brief comparison may be in order in next week’s Verdict article.

For now though lets focus on Transformed, the game we’re actually looking at. While we never did a formal review of the game, Teflon previewed it and Al compared it to F1 Race Stars and LittleBigPlanet Karting. Both articles praised Transformed, and it actually won Alex’s face off between last year’s wealth of karting titles.

Teflon picked out Transformed’s weapon system as being particularly fun due to the simple fairness it provided, removing the overpowered weapons that can completely destroy your chances in other kart racers. He was particularly fond of the fact that “everything can be blocked by that baseball glove, which will surely help you hang onto a well deserved win if you’re good enough to battle to the front.” Moving the focus more onto skill than the amount of power-ups you can pick up is perhaps a strange move for a karting game, but one that I’m in favour of. While Mario Kart is a lot of fun, it can become annoying when you are slammed by a blue shell moments before you cross the finish line.

Of course the ‘transformed’ part of All-Stars is very important, with both Alex and Teflon praising the way that the tracks changes as you progress through laps, causing your kart to transforms into a boat or aircraft. Alex said that “Sonic’s tracks are something else… For SEGA fans this is racing heaven,” and highlighted the game’s Afterburner course as being particularly well designed to take account of the game’s transforming mechanic, while Teflon simply praised the way you have to “quickly have to deal with the different handling and a new layout to the track” as things change and your kart transforms.

Sticking with the tracks, Alex did feel that they were a bit too long, despite their changing nature. To be fair he did level this criticism at all three titles he was looking at, saying that “Mario Kart, the standard bearer in the genre, knows how to mix length tracks with shorter ones for variety, something that the above titles seem to miss.” While I don’t think karting titles should directly copy Mario Kart, there are things that can be learned, and that’s one of them.

Alex also complained of some performance issues, finding “some hefty load times on the PS3,” and feeling that the “The menu clunks and drags along a bit.” However, he was positive about the game’s graphics while you’re actually racing, although did find them a little plasticky.

Overall both Teflon and Alex enjoyed Transformed, with Teflon feeling that it was “really looking like a great package” and Alex saying that “if you’re looking for the best kart racer on the PlayStation 3, it’s probably this.”

That’s all well and good, but now it’s time to throw things over to you. Did you enjoy it as much as Alex and Teflon, or would you rather have had a more traditional karting title? Did you feel it had a good selection of characters to pick from, or could it have used more? Whatever you feel, you can share by dropping a comment below. All we ask is that you add a rating for the game from the Buy It, Bargain Bin It, Rent It, Avoid It scale so we can get a feel of the community’s overall opinion in Monday’s Verdict article.

11 Comments
  1. 3shirts
    Member
    Since: Aug 2008

    “safe to say that it didn’t too well” – Didn’t what too well? I must know!
    “weapon system as being particularly fun dude to the simple fairness it provided” – DUUUUDE!

    That’s all for today :)

    Comment posted on 02/04/2013 at 14:04.
    • Kris Lipscombe
      Team TSA: Writer
      Since: Mar 2009

      Thank you, fixed.

      Comment posted on 02/04/2013 at 14:39.
  2. teflon
    Community Team
    Since: May 2009

    The AI can get really quite hard to beat, with some hefty doses of rubber banding, and the levels really are all quite a bit too long.
    Having said that, it’s still a great kart racer, with a fair weapon system mixing in with a metric ton of Sega nostalgia.
    Definitely a Buy It from me.

    Comment posted on 02/04/2013 at 14:23.
  3. parryman
    Member
    Since: Apr 2012

    I currently have this on the Vita as a rental.
    in all honesty, I dislike it.
    my official verdict (based solely on the Vita version) is Avoid It.
    levels are overlong, weapons are unresponsive, car specs make no difference (you could have the speed maxed out and boosting, someone can breeze pass and take the win from you) the AI is quite good, and winning isn’t a formality, you have to work at it.

    Comment posted on 02/04/2013 at 14:59.
  4. Crazy_Del
    Member
    Since: Jul 2009

    Been too long since I did my short review.
    Simple answer – BUY IT (it was worth £25 on launch and far better that F1 Race Stars and I cannot say for LBP Karting as I have never played it…. yet!)
    Anyhoo Sonic and Sega All Stars Racing Transformed was fantastic and a huge change/improvements from the previous Sonic karting. I absolutely enjoyed it on the PS3 and got the Platinum. The AI were really challenging on Hard and Expert was very challenging! The game was fantastic as it was long has various of different racing modes and has decent characters and they all have strengths and weakness which test us on certain tracks. There were good tracks including mirrored version aswell and even better the tracks also transformed too which makes it fresh and not boring on the final lap. And it can change from kart to plane and to a boat, a great transformation. The weapons are great too and very well balance on certain position on the race. All I can say is it was an absolute steal on launch for £25 it has more content and more fun than F1 Race Stars at £40 (Although its free now on Plus) Sonic would be around £15-£20 today I could be wrong but…….
    BUY IT!

    Oh a cracking 4 player splitscreen with mates in the house. It is really fun and has more racing modes. It even has a Battle mode for 4 players a great fun that. It was a great night since my last 4 player splitscreen was Mario Kart on SNES. Ahhhh wonderful memories.

    Comment posted on 02/04/2013 at 16:45.
  5. Starman
    Member
    Since: Jul 2011

    I found this to be a very polished, impressive racer. As someone who can never get into the serious racing games this is much more to my liking. A good variety of modes and stuff to unlock too. I found the tracks and the transforming feature quite innovative in a genre that can be quite samey.
    Only criticisms are as a game that’s (partly) aimed at kids, the difficulty could do with being more forgiving. (my 7yr old niece plays it when she’s round). And also it could have done with some more characters from SEGA’s heyday.

    Definitely Buy It.

    Comment posted on 02/04/2013 at 17:51.
  6. Sitorimon
    Member
    Since: Jul 2011

    Oh my god Buy It Now you bunch of crazy cats!!! In my very humble opinion its easily the best kart racer I’ve played this generation by far, probably beating out last gens efforts too (Mashed, CTR or Pacman Rally anyone?) and its just utterly amazing.

    There’s 2 reasons I feel its a success. Firstly is the way the way handles each vehicle. The karts grip exactly how you’d expect them to, the boats are floaty but still completely in your control and the planes have wide turning circles. It just feels completely intuitive – like second nature that its exactly how you expected it to always be without really being told. (F1 Race Stars would be so much better if the thing didn’t handle like a cow in the middle of taking a dump)

    The second is the themes and the way that’s worked into the track design. Tracks deform, change, explode, open up new routes lap on lap as you swap from vehicle to vehicle. The way how it all happens without mass confusion and each of the world takes so much from the game its representing – you can really feel a lot of love went into each detail. Each track therefore feels utterly unique.

    Add to that impressive AI that doesn’t feel like its cheating (F1 Stars / LPBK), smooth and beautiful online and splitscreen for 2-4 locally (yay for local multiplayer) a great soundtrack and plenty of modes to uncover. They’ve even been voting over what the next DLC characters could be and put it to the public. It just feels like an excellent labour of love.

    So yeah – I’m gushing unabashedly. If you get one fun racer all gen – please make it this. I actually think it’d be in my top 5 PS3 games.

    Comment posted on 03/04/2013 at 01:46.
    • quinkill
      Member
      Since: Oct 2010

      Agree with most of above. I played it on my Vita and it was great on the go.

      Comment posted on 06/04/2013 at 17:04.
  7. Airiaen
    Member
    Since: Aug 2009

    it feels like a Outrun spin off because of the drifting i love it, I like it more than the first game. Though I wished there was more content. maybe more dlc but besides that its a great kart racer for everyone and its good fun with local mp. buoy it m8!

    Comment posted on 03/04/2013 at 07:46.
  8. Germanos
    Member
    Since: May 2011

    Looking forward to see the WeView result for this, as I’m looking for a good carting game, since F1 Race Stars did not go to well.

    Comment posted on 03/04/2013 at 08:57.
  9. freezebug2
    Member
    Since: Dec 2008

    Best of the bunch by a country mile, buy it!

    Comment posted on 03/04/2013 at 09:21.

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