It’s not often that you receive not just one game to review, but two. Formula Retro Racing: World Tour, the ambitious and often mesmerizing sequel to the undervalued Formula Retro Racing, a series launch I liked so much, landed on my top ten must-play indie list of 2020, proving this to be the case. A week before its release, Formula Retro Racing: World Tour imbalanced, inconsistent, and plainly incomplete, despite its developers’ best intentions to craft yet another love letter to 90s racing games. It had some good points, but the sequel seemed hurried and incomplete. When is the launch, exactly? Extensive alterations created an altogether new feel.

Players should plan on receiving

Every credible game critic will tell you that pre-launch patches are rather normal, and that players should plan on receiving a day-one patch to address known issues. Yet, despite the numerous legitimate updates that have brought many parts of Formula Retro Racing: World Tour up to standard, issues still exist. But, Formula Retro Racing’s designer, Repixel8, is the one most likely to correct them, and he will do it very quickly. If you enjoyed the original game or are just craving some nostalgia, you should give World Tour a go; any remaining problems will patched in a matter of days or hours, not months or weeks, thanks to the hard work of lead developer Andrew Jeffreys.

The premise for Formula Retro Racing: World Tour is straightforward: it’s the same thing done again, this time with a different kind of vehicle and many more tracks. The Colosseum, the Tokyo Tower, the meandering valleys of Wales, and the hilariously lo-fi interpretations on Las Vegas’ Fremont Street are just a few of the famous landmarks that served as inspiration for Formula Retro Racing. Stunningly steady 60fps throughout ensures that you’ll always have a reason to grin.

Montreal course to the truly mind-boggling

The circuits range from the straightforwardly modeled opening Montreal course to the truly mind-boggling San Francisco course, easily the most ambitious and janky hill-strewn racetrack with a very clear nod to Lombard Street, which has its own weird charisma despite your car regularly exploding because you can’t see where you’re going on downhill sections.

To that end, familiarity with your vehicle’s capabilities is crucial. The tried-and-true F1/Indy cars are returning, and they joined by some fresh Le Mans-style designs. Despite this, Formula Retro Racing: World Tours all-new vehicle class undeveloped to the point that it frequently seems like an afterthought, giving the impression that the game was built primarily with them in mind. Drift hunters cars are here, and they’re the most insane arcade racing vehicle you’ll attempt in years. Over 60 mph, these vehicles behave like marginally more nimble shopping carts. Every effort at deviating from a perfectly straight course will result in you screeching and skidding like Bambi on ice. unusually regal.

The game’s preferred method of transportation

Nonetheless, they quickly become the game’s preferred method of transportation. You and your 19 other racers will have a blast swerving in and out of turns and avoiding catastrophic collisions after you figure out the game’s tricks and realize that only around five of the bends demand active braking (the rest allow you to just ease off the throttle to nail the ideal turn). Rather of driving, you’ll be dancing. World Tour lost focus on the market and aimed too high, but one thing is certain: Repixel8 will polish and enhance this game to make it another memorable experience worthy of your hard-earned retro-demanding cash. It’s not a must-have item right now, but if this is your style, you should definitely give it a go.

Unfortunately, on Expert level, drift vehicles cannot used on all tracks owing to a lack of technical balance. This is most aggravating in bowl races, when drift cars must often actually drive on the grass to achieve victory. You’d think this would an issue for any vehicle, but oddly enough, only Indy-style fast class cars affected by the turf. In contrast, it is simply impossible to catch up to your other drivers in a drift vehicle on some courses, such as the excessively lengthy and terribly monotonous Snowdonia Drift.

Racing: World Tour need several changes to reach

Formula Retro Racing: World Tour need several changes to reach its full potential. Several Expert-difficulty circuits still feature unfair timings between checkpoints, and crash mechanics might result in you having to repeat a race only seconds into an attempt after you’ve careened into the wall for no reason at all. After several patches, the Xbox version of World Tour still does not wake up after being put to sleep by a hard reset.

Not everything has room for improvement. Even with forensic tweaks, the bowl races are still boring and routine; they’re the epitome of “win once, never again” solutions. If you have the guts to run an Eliminator for 30 laps, the music will put you in a straightjacket by lap 10. There may have been another month or two of testing for Formula Retro Racing: World Tour. It’s just a victim of its own ambitions, and that’s irritating and admirable and understandable all at once in the indie environment.