Chiki-Chiki Boxy Racers
Review Context: I’m a fan of arcade racers, including ones where you drive mini cars on a small track course. Seeing the trailer for this made me have hopes of remembering the fun times I had with games similar to this.
Date of Playthrough: September 7, 2018
Disclosure: This review was based off of a review copy
The game goes for a Minecraft (boxy) style that fits perfectly considering the title of the game. The vehicles and tracks are done nicely with bright colors that pop out vividly, reminding you of how awesome a rainbow can look in HD. The race view has 3/4 isometric view with the camera option to zoom in or out, while battle mode has the standard locked camera depending on the amount of players. Whether docked or not, the game looks great, though I have noticed moments where the game would freeze for a moment and resume, but it’s one of those blink and you miss moments.
The controls are simple for anyone to pick up and play, giving you two options, stick and handle. Stick has you controlling your vehicle/acceleration entirely with the analog stick, with the face buttons used for brake and items. Handle is traditional controls with the analog stick for steering, with the face buttons for gas, brake, and items. Each vehicle is handled differently, with the stats telling you their strengths and weaknesses. It doesn’t take much for your car to spin out of control and dropping to last place in a dime, so choose carefully.
This racer contains 12 tracks and 20 vehicles, which you have to unlock by finishing in the top three (for new tracks). You have to come in first place to unlock new vehicle,s which range from a pick-up to a semi, and other vehicle types you can expect in an arcade racer. What confuses me is how you unlock the courses one by one, only to end with unlocking the Grand Prix and racing all the tracks you’ve unlocked. Normally, Grand Prix is unlocked from the start so that threw me for a loop. Due to the nature of the course, you can get in a practice round before starting the actually race.
There are 3 track worlds: City, Beach, and Jungle. The tracks themselves are nice with obstacles and items for you to obtain, but you’ll be too busy looking at the road to notice the items. The feature I do like is how your boost meter slowly recharges after a while and increases quickly if you drift or draft behind a racer. The difficulty is based on your skills, because the game having an isometric view may throw some people off and one turning mistake will net you in last place before you know it. The driver AI will push your patience, as the first place driver is aggressive. Not to mention, the courses have that trial and error feeling, so once you memorize the course you can breeze through the races pretty quickly. Fun note, the Mario Kart boost trick works. I tried it on a whim and bam, boost start.
While racing is the appetizer, for most players, it’s the battle mode that gets the most play time. This game has four different battle types: Coins, Smash, Paint, and Goal. Coins have players battling for the most coins collected. Smash (my favorite) has you knocking your opponents off the island to score points. Paint has players spray painting the track (like Splatoon) and player’s color that covers the track the most in the time limit wins. Goal has you on teams to get the soccer ball into the other team’s goal (Rocket League). Each Battle type has the same level which is unfortunate.
Chiki-Chiki Boxy Racers does support local and online for up to eight people, even including system link. However, my experience with battle mode wasn’t that great. Due to transportation issues, I wasn’t able to experience true battle mode with friends. Then I noticed that I could do Battle in solo mode and thought that bots would be added to the mix. To my disappointment, Battle in solo mode just became about getting the high score and beating the high score. Smash mode in solo was just me and an object for me to knock off the stage, same goes for all the other modes. I was just surprised that no effect was put into adding bots. Your scores are saved locally, so no online ranking.
I then remembered the game has online so I hopped on hoping to get some online matches to experience race and battle mode with other people. So I waited in the lobby, and waited, and waited. Sadly, even before I wrote this review I was not able to join any matches due to the fact that no one else is playing the game. I tried connecting in the morning, afternoon, and evening, only to see me in the lobby with the clock counting down to zero and booting me out.
The soundtrack fits the tune for a wacky racer and the race tunes are okay as well. The sound effects are decent and gets the job done of letting you know this a fun racer not to be taken seriously. Some people may find the music repetitive as the level race tracks play the same tune.
Similar Games Liked:
R.C. Pro-Am (GB, NES)
Rock n’ Roll Racing (SNES)
Micro Machines (NES)