Cubed3 Nintendo gaming, Wii and DS

Hot Wheels: Track Attack (Wii) Review

Review for Hot Wheels: Track Attack on Wii - on Nintendo Wii U, 3DS games review

Originating from the US, toy manufacturer Mattel has taken the attention of many a youngster for over 40 years with its brand of Hot Wheels car models. Initially only created to resemble a few select designs based on regular full-sized cars, the brand grew in popularity enough to expand the choice range, and to allow automobile makers like Ford, Ferrari and Toyota to give their own blueprints for miniature editions of newer cars. The Hot Wheels franchise's foray into the world of videogaming has been low-key at best, with titles on PlayStation, PC, and GameCube, that didn't exactly propel the brand to the general racer fan's wishlist. THQ and Firebrand are giving it another go with a motion-controlled edge; will Track Attack leave you Hot for more, or does it feel like it comes from a world before the Wheel?

Hot Wheels: Track Attack keeps things simple throughout in nearly every aspect; the most immediately obvious being the graphical level - colourful, and with a stable framerate, but basic, and in no way pushing the hardware. The backing music is equally as simple, if a little repetitive, though thankfully this does not detract from the rest of the game. The cringeworthy voiceover might though; with choice quotes like “unreal!”, “outrageous!”, and “incredible!” being shouted at every boost or jump, many a wise player will reach for the mute button.

Young Hot Wheels fans will easily notice how faithful this game is to its source material, with dozens of car designs to choose from (and modify at one's leisure), and the tracks employ certain environmental gimmicks from the real-world play sets, so you'll be seeing sharks and giant spiders invading the tracks on a regular basis. Aside from modified track loops, and pads that can make your car jump, gain a burst of energy, or spin out, Track Attack is just straight-up racing; no weapons, just a race to the finish line. You may also have to collect objects, depending on the mode.

Control is another aspect that Hot Wheels: Track Attack doesn't confuse with too many options; horizontally-based Wii Remote wheel motion, or just the D-pad and buttons. The game does make a big fuss of using the Wii Wheel attachment, but at first this option feels far too flimsy, and takes time to get used to, particularly considering there's no way to manually adjust sensitivity. The other control choice, on the other hand, works much better initially, and you won't be meeting barricades with it. Both options are hindered though, by the decision to only allow menu navigation with the A button and pointer, forcing you to switch Remote positions between races. It's not a huge deal, as you'll spend a great deal more time racing than anything else, but it is an oddity.

Precision control is a must if you decide to aim for collecting the tokens scattered along the tracks; these open new customisation options for the cars you earn through racing. This makes up the basis of Race mode, that offers four main racing environments with multiple target-based courses; goals that include just simply reaching the finish line first, completing a lap the fastest, passing through designated checkpoints, or merely collecting as many tokens as possible in the time limit. Whilst the environments are limited in scope design and number, ranging from a beach area to an urban city, these varying tasks help keep things fresh.

Screenshot for Hot Wheels: Track Attack on Wii - on Nintendo Wii U, 3DS games review

While the single player mode will keep players busy for a while, two other menu choices are where Hot Wheels: Track Attack shines brightest. Track Builder in particular, can offer unlimited replayability, with a little design imagination. Using the Wii Remote's pointer, you can lay down the foundation of your track, and with a piece picker icon in the bottom right, modify your course with jumps, loops, boosts, and pretty much any option you'd see in the game's main levels. Through another icon, you can take a test drive around your creation, be it by yourself or with AI opponents, or save it to be used in four-way split-screen multiplayer later on. This mode is flexible, and laid out in an accessible manner, though does suffer from a background design limitation; you can choose the kind of environment you want to display along the back of your course, but everything along the track itself is bare-bones, which may hinder your creative spirit.

The other shining gameplay mode is that of multiplayer, which is fairly extensive; aside from the courses you've already created yourself, you can race with up to three friends in any of the tracks you've already cleared in Race mode; rules of said course dependent on which you pick. This is most likely where you'll spend most of your playtime in Hot Wheels: Track Attack, as there is a lot of room for a new experience each time, owing to the range of courses and cars to choose from.

Firebrand unfortunately did not include an online multiplayer mode, but what there is is slightly more novel; by fulfilling certain conditions in the game, you can earn trophies, which give unique codes you can then type into a website. Doing that gives you another code, which then gets entered into the game's options menu, unlocking in-game bonuses. It’s long-winded perhaps, and in no way makes up for the absence of a dedicated online racing mode that would have added untold amounts of extra play hours, but a unique addition nonetheless.

Hot Wheels: Track Attack is a very authentic product that makes no illusionary stance in regards to its target audience, and provides a solid accessible little racer for everyone else not looking for a serious experience.

Screenshot for Hot Wheels: Track Attack on Wii - on Nintendo Wii U, 3DS games review

Gameplay

Racing is accessible, and easy to get to grips with, but difficult to master depending on control scheme.

Graphics

A decent varying number of track designs, and a good amount of car choices, coupled with an unfortunate low level of visual ability, but nothing that would hinder a race.

Sound

Largely forgettable, with an over-eager voice-over and generic car noises.

Value

In the hands of a young Hot Wheels fan, with token collection, car and track Unlocking, and a versatile creation mode, this game could last months.

Cubed3 Rating

7/10
Rated 7 out of 10

Good - Bronze Award

About this score
Rated 7 out of 10

With Hot Wheels: Track Attack, what you see is what you get; basic and accessible at an impressions level, with an immaculate amount of replayability for Hot Wheels fans. Those looking for the majesty of a true racing sim, or the chaos of a kart racer had best move on.

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01.02.2011

4

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Developer

Firebrand

Publisher

THQ

Genre

Driving

Players

4

C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  7/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  8/10 (1 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date Out now   Japan release date None   Australian release date Out now   

Reader comments - add yours today Comments on this Review

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Senior ModeratorStaff Member

Firebrand won't be at fault for the lack of online multiplayer - that's THQ's budget being too small to cater for it. The Scottish team's first Wii efforts are this and TrackMania, both of which they wanted to do online with. Sadly only the latter got the greenlight from the publisher (Ubisoft, who were pleased with the performance of the first DS TrackMania).

Hot Wheels is part of THQ's mega-budget label releases, which also included Barbie Groom & Glam Pups Smilie I have high hopes for Firebrand doing the next Wii Need for Speed and maybe even a new Codemasters Wii racer using the Octane engine.

Adam Riley < Operations Director :: Senior Editor :: Cubed3 Limited >
Word of Adam | Voice123 Profile | AdamC3 on Twitter
gerry (guest) 26.02.2011 23:17#2

do you got code for this game hot wheels track attack

Senior ModeratorStaff Member

What sort of code are you looking for? Normally things like that can be found on http://www.gamefaqs.com Smilie

Adam Riley < Operations Director :: Senior Editor :: Cubed3 Limited >
Word of Adam | Voice123 Profile | AdamC3 on Twitter

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