Hotshot Racing is a fast-paced arcade-style racing game that harkens back to a time when racing games were more about fun and less about being hyper-realistic. Brought to you by Curve Digital, Lucky Mountain Games, and Sumo Digital, Hotshot Racing is a 90’s inspired racer akin to classic games like Ridge Racer, Daytona USA, Virtua Racer, and more. These were games I grew up with when we used to go to the arcade to play games and not just sit around our living rooms doing it.
While Hotshot Racing is a new breed of racers, it has the look of these old school arcade games. Everything in the game is made up of polygons, but despite this, there’s an incredible amount of detail still. There are some very recognizable vehicles in this game that are based on real-life cars and each seems to have an incredible amount of customization options. The environments and tracks also feature some fantastic designs and layouts, again also highly detailed in the same polygonal art style. Everything is bright and colorful and full of life.
There’s a huge variety of tracks and each with their own unique themes. Every track can be played in either normal, hard, or expert mode. The main difference between each seems to be the amount of time you get in between each checkpoint and the CPU racers seem to get more and more aggressive. I suggest going through all the races on normal first just so you can get used to the way the cars drive and how the drifting works in Hotshot Racing.
Speaking of cars, there’s a good assortment of them. There are eight characters you can choose from and each character has a set of four vehicles you can choose from. That means there are 32 vehicles you can drive. I mentioned it a bit up top, but each vehicle also has a crazy amount of customizable parts, mainly just cosmetic. You can swap color pallettes, skins, body parts and wheels. None of it really affects the car’s performance, but it’s just cool being able to make your vehicle look different. Some of the customized options are available at the start while others need to be unlocked by completing challenges.
This adds to the replay value of the game. If you’re a completionist, you’ll want to drive each vehicle in every race. You’ll also want to complete each difficulty level as well. Not only that, if you complete all the single-player challenges, you can also play with friends via local split-screen, online multiplayer, or local wireless.
Don’t think you’ll fly through all the challenges though. It takes a lot of practice to win these races and that’s especially true of higher difficulty races. The CPU doesn’t race clean and is not afraid to bump you from time to time. Not only that but like old racers of the past, they also seem to be unrealistically fast. It’s almost impossible to lead by a huge margin as they always catch up, but when it’s the other way around, you’ll have a hard time catching up to them. That’s pretty much how these arcade racers work and while it’s not very realistic, it does jack up the fun factor as there’s never a dull moment.
Hotshot Racing is one of the most fun racing games I’ve played on the Nintendo Switch. I’m usually into sims, but they can get pretty boring sometimes and I know they aren’t everyone’s cup of tea. With arcade racers, there’s usually a lot more excitement and sense of speed which Hotshot Racing excells at. If you’re more about the fun aspect of racing, I definitely recommend picking up Hotshot Racing and it’s a game you can enjoy on your own or with a group of friends.
Received game from developer and/or publisher for coverage purposes.
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