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First Impressions: Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed

Posted by Brad Long

Hands-on impressions from the EB Expo in Australia

Sega had a playable version of Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed at the EB Expo 2012, so we naturally took the opportunity to check out how it compares to the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 editions, as well as see if the previously-noted frame rate issues were indeed solved, as Sega has publicly stated in the past.

The game holds up very well visually, with bright and colourful characters and eye-catching environments. The frame rate only skipped for us a couple of times after we’d crossed the finish line, it was never an issue while driving the cars.

The controls were very responsive too; once we had figured out which buttons did what, we were able to keep up rather well on the harder difficulties. Drifting around tight corners is a must, and the timing takes a short while to get used to - especially if you’ve been playing Mario Kart games for years!

The Wii U pad was used rather sparingly, as it only contained a map, not dissimilar to the DS and 3DS iterations of Mario Kart. This wasn’t much of a surprise, as almost the entire time was spent looking at the screen anyway.

The transformation of vehicles happens rather smoothly, though the design of the course we played on wasn't fantastic. Once in the water part of the course, we immediately went the wrong direction as we missed a small marker to the far right of the screen indicating a tunnel we needed to go to, when the course itself seemed to go straight ahead, sending us into an invisible wall and sending us to the back of the pack. We can only hope these course designs will be fixed in the final build.

The Wii U and the Xbox 360 both had the same demo to play, which allowed us to play only as Sonic, and race on just the one track. We thought the Wii U version seemed to handle the pace a tad better, running just slightly smoother and having a slight edge in the crispness of the graphics. Both versions were rather far behind the PlayStation 3 version, but it should be remembered that the demo for the PS3 was a version that was much further along in development, and allowed us to pick from a number of characters and courses.

Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed doesn’t quite stack up to Mario Kart just yet, but with enough extra polish, it could come in very close. We'll find out for sure when the game launches alongside the Wii U in November.

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User Comments (19)

SegaGamer93

#1

SegaGamer93 said:

Great to hear that it is a great game so far. When I looked the latest trailer of it, the After Burner race track caught my attention straight away. I already pre-ordered Sonic and Sega-All Stars racing for the PS3 and I cant wait to play it and show it to my little cousin (who I accidently made him become a Sonic fan) but I'm sure he will be happy seeing the game.

LEGEND_MARIOID

#2

LEGEND_MARIOID said:

So the wii u game pad isn't used as a motion controlled steering wheel like iOS racers use the ipad? Even the first iteration of the Sonic all stars racing series had motion control with the iPad tilting. In the Nintendo Gamer interview, the devs kept on saying that they didn't have a lot of time with the wii u version though they were very positive about it. I need a review. ....

Shirma_Akayaku

#3

Shirma_Akayaku said:

I KNEW IT!!! Ulala is in this game after all (Thank you SEGA for not rejecting certain characters).

Xilef

#4

Xilef said:

Might be something to pick up while waiting for Mario Kart U.

Shining-Void

#5

Shining-Void said:

@Ulala I now know who your avatar is. Well looks like i'll be getting this at launch. Er... Christmas since thats when i'm getting my wii u.

gojiguy

#8

gojiguy said:

I dont want it to stack up to mario kart.

I want it to stack up to Outrun, Daytona USA, Afterburner and Hydro Thunder.

DarkNinja9

#10

DarkNinja9 said:

this to me can either be a good game or a fail .-. never been to big of a sonic game but some parts of the game do look interesting :P

ljinkakidd

#11

ljinkakidd said:

You can't beat Mario Kart but you can compete. But let's recall Super Mario Kart SNES to Sonic Drift... yeah. I think sonic should go back to foot racing like Sonic R. Mario is kart ridden because he cannot run as fast as sonic. If you're the "fastest thing alive" then prove it. Nevertheless the game seems entertaining but not as much as Mario Kart.

CoffeeWithGames

#12

CoffeeWithGames said:

I gotta say the trailer for this made me interested in the game. It looked like there was A LOT of variation within each track, as for optional routes and ways to use the vehicles.

While I rarely purchase racing games, our oldest is starting to enjoy gaming A LOT more, and can identify Sonic because of the cartoons on Netflix. So, I'll be keeping on eye (or two) on this one.

Kohaku

#13

Kohaku said:

Still not sure about this game. I think I keep on playing MK Wii on my WiiU instead of this one.

TornadoX7

#14

TornadoX7 said:

I agree that maybe this game will be very close to MK, because personally i enjoyed the other sega all stars racing game very much

True_Hero

#16

True_Hero said:

I hope they can get the Wii U version up to snuff before the launch date. Even then, I'll still probably get this.

Sun

#19

Sun said:

@DarkNinja9 I agree. If it improves over the previous one it can be a great game, but if it is done fast to meet Wii U launch it can miss its second chance. I can't wait for reviews on this one.

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