Review by Mech Master

Reviewed: 03/21/04

A Very Solid Twist on a Great Series

Man, I hated this game at first. When I saw previews I thought this game was just for kids and too cutesy. So I finally bought the game to see for myself. I was WRONG! This game is actually one of the most enjoyable games I am playing right now. The game is very fun single player, but multiplayer is where the game really shines. This one of the best multiplayer games out there on any console right now! This is one of those games that would be perfect online, but at the same time Nintendo chooses not to support it. Well, LAN is the next best thing or you can use warp pipe and unofficially play online. Oh yeah!

Once upon a time...uh.......uhh.........uhhh...well it doesn't look like the game has a story. This really isn't that surprising since most racing games these days don't have stories except for a handful like Pro Race Driver and F-Zero GX. But this is a racing game where there could have been a story. There could have...maybe. Well, there really isn't much else to say about this category.

GRAPHICS:7.5 (round to 7)
C'mon! Hal Laboratory's last game Super Smash brothers Melee had great graphics. I don't see why they were downgraded any. This game could have easily used the same graphics engine for this. That isn't to say the game has bad graphics. Yes they are ''good''. Everything is very colorful and all of the characters are very rounded. But the world itself lacks some detail. Just imagine if the game was cel-shaded. Then it would look really good. I guess the graphics were downgraded so the game could make it out for the holiday season.

SOUND:8.5 (round to 8)
I have always enjoyed the music in this developers past games. It really does sound like a Nintendo game. That is a good thing by the way. So the game has good music, but does it have anything else going for it? Yes and no. All of the sound effects are very good. Again they also sound like something from Nintendo. There are no character voice overs though. It would have been great to hear different Kirbys talking smack in a race. Well, you and your friends can take care of that. So overall the audio quality is very well done, but the only complaint I have is that the music is done live like in say Zelda.

This is a very simple game. A lot of people say it is too simple, but I don't mind. You basically use the A button for everything in the game. That may actually sound complicated, but it isn't. The gameplay consists of racing in these brilliantly designed courses and using different powerups to help win races. That is your standard race mode, but there is this other unique racing mode called City Trial. It has you and up to three other people wandering around this city upgrading your vehicle with these random powerups to make a machine to win the race after collecting these enhancements for five minutes. There are also tons of events that occur in the city such as Meteors may be destroying the city or a huge monster is wandering around or maybe your vehicle goes haywire and is traveling at insane speeds. All of these keep the game fresh up until the race. The thing is, is that you don't know what kind of race it will be. It may be a drag race or some completely different kind of even. So you get clues on what the race will be and you can upgrade your machine ahead of time to prepare for that type of race. There is also some of the most enjoyable multiplayer in the game. The game is insanely fun, but at times gets repetitive and feels too simplistic.

Everybody has been talking about the whole idea of using A for every action. This is actually very simple and much better than I expected. But there really isn't any excuse for not taking advantage of using the other face buttons for the game. The game feels like it was designed for people missing fingers, so they assigned everything just to just one button. Whoever thought of this must not have been a few beers short of a six pack when thinking about this ''unique'' idea. It works well, but the game feels to simplified this way.

This is definitely a game to have in your collection. It may not have all of the bells and whistles with it like Metroid Prime or Zelda, but the game is insanely fun. If you are young and enjoy these types of games this is a must--buy. Or if you are just looking for a game to get together with your friends and play, this is a great game to get. Hardcore racing gamers might just want to rent this though, but otherwise buy it. NOW! Stop reading the review and go play!

Rating:   4.0 - Great

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