This generation is certainly not the most prolific in the field of kart racing and it is a real shame considering that, in the PlayStation 3 / Xbox 360 / Wii era, we were able to entertain ourselves with several excellent products including the two Sega All-Stars Racing.
The Japanese software house has decided to try again by entrusting Sumo Digital the daunting task of continuing the tradition with Team Sonic Racing, how did it go?
Run to the Hills
From the title we can understand how, unlike the two Sega All-Stars Racing and their rosters that drew from the Sega universe as a whole, Team Sonic Racing both entirely focused on Sonic and his friends.
A rather bizarre choice, unlike a Mario Kart or a Crash Team Racing where each character is iconic in its own way, not all characters from the Sonic world are up to par with more historical characters like Tails, Amy and Knucles!
Unlikely, unless you are a huge fan of the blue hedgehog saga, the user will be able to be fully satisfied with the roster.
Having made this necessary premise, let's move on to the actual game. In the main menu we can have an overview of the different modes: the Grand Prix is the classic Adventure mode in which we will be invited to participate in a competition created by the mysterious Dodon Pa on Planet Wisp.
The story will be told by means of static images with dubbed dialogues entirely in Italian; you could certainly have done better although the plot does not aim to be one of the strong points of the game.
It will be possible to navigate Planet Wisp using a 2D map in which we will be able to select events, sometimes it will be necessary to use keys (obtainable by completing certain objectives) to unlock new boxes.
We have at our disposal different types of competition, such as the classic races in which we will have to finish first to pass to the elimination relay or challenges focused on collecting points.
As if that were not enough, we will be asked to collect as many rings as possible before the time runs out, collecting the rings in drift will grant seconds as a bonus.
By completing a challenge we will have the opportunity to get one or more stars, which we will use to access new events and continue in the Story mode.
High Speed Dirt
The title speaks for itself, Team Sonic Racing offers a team-focused experience and on four-wheel cooperation.
The characters at our disposal will be divided into several teams of three and each character will have its own specialization, for example Team Sonic is a specialist "Speed", Tails is a specialist "Technique" and Knuckles "Power".
On the track, communication between teammates takes the form of exploiting some small tricks and in the possibility of send and receive cases.
In the first case we can stay in the wake of one of our mates and earn a small boost when we come out of the wake; also touch your kart friends in the race will allow us to go faster.
Along the way we will be able to collect some breakage containing weapons of various kinds, in case we are not satisfied with the content pressing circle we can send the object to a friend of ours.
At each sending we will fill the bar of Super Turbo which will give us the opportunity to go to the maximum for about ten seconds and, at the same time, to be invulnerabili to enemy attacks.
United we compete and united we win, the team that has accumulated the most points will be the actual winner.
We will earn from event to event virtual currency to spend in a Slot Machine through which we will get both aesthetic and performance customizations unique to each rider.
Kart enhancements can be used for obtain a particular skill, an improvement of the weapons that can be collected in the race or an improvement of the statistics.
If on paper the gaming experience should be stratified enough in practice that "something" is missing that ignites the player's interest in the long term.
In particular, in terms of pure gameplay, it is hard to feel the differences between the types of vehicles and the management of power-ups and skills is very basic.
Also, the level of challenge is not exhilarating and it has a general lack of character and the feeling of "I would like to but I can't" is really very strong.
The strong point of the production should be competing in teams, in the long run you will realize that your victories will be more the result of single skill than of effective collaboration with the AI.
Things get better by playing online courses, there is the possibility of competing in a team with and against other humans but already at the launch the situation on the community side was not the best, the risk is that the exit of Crash Team Racing contributes to removing the public from Team Sonic Racing.
On the wings of a turbo
Technically Team Sonic Racing non impresses for polygonal mole but the overall picture is pretty nice: i 60 FPS they guarantee the fluidity necessary for a course and the design of the slopes is at good levels both scenographically and in terms of construction.
In total we can choose between 21 circuits between new entries and returns from the other Sega All-Stars Racing.
The soundtrack doesn't stand out for quality or variety, the included tracks are pleasant to listen to but are unlikely to stay in the lead.
The Italian dubbing on the contrary is of excellent workmanship, it is a pity that we have limited ourselves to only the dialogue on a static background to tell the plot.
To The Max
After the two Sega-All Stars Racing it would have been natural to continue on that path but Sega was not of the same opinion and the final result, although good, leaves room for many regrets.
Team Sonic Racing lacks the little details that make the difference between a passing karting game and a karting game born to stay.
We have a good foundation such as the team structure, the tactics at our disposal, the excellent customization of the vehicles and an online sector that could take flight but often there is no cohesion between the individual aspects, unlike what happened only with the two predecessors.
The price of only 39,99 euros it is a great advantage, if you are abstinent from the genre it is a recommended purchase but you could really do more.