Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed is a racing game about games made by Sega. It's worth noting that almost everything about the game comes from or is some nod to Sega's past as a game developer and publisher. The music, racers and tracks are all based on various games made by Sega, and there's actually a good amount of Sega's history covered here, everything from the old master system and arcade days, up to the Dreamcast and beyond. This game is very much a love letter to all things Sega, and if you're one of those people who like myself grew up playing Sega Games instead of Nintendo, there's a lot of recognizable stuff here.
|This is a game about racing as Sega characters on tracks based on Sega games|
The game has a large number of characters to race as, again from several Sega games. There's over 20 of them, which gives a lot of gameplay options, but what makes this even better is mods. Each character has access to about eight different mods, unlocked through a leveling system that gives characters xp as you race as them. These mods alter how a character plays and some of them have a drastic impact on how they perform, giving players a lot more options that it initially appears. The characters cover a good amount of Sega's history. Alongside fairly obvious picks like sonic and Tails, AiAi from Super Monkey Ball or B. D. Joe from crazy Taxi, there's a lot of picks you might not have initially expected. like Vyes from Skies of Arcadia, or Gilius Thunderhead from golden Ax. There's even a good number of guest characters, like Ralph from Wreck-it Ralph or even several characters from Valve's Team Fortress 2 on the PC version. Overall there's a good selection here.
|Races see you switching between car, boat, and plane mode on the fly.|
The game comes complete with several different modes to play in, outside of single race and the Grand Prix, which has several cups to race through, There's the world tour. The world tour consists of a map from which you can pick various events to play in, covering not only single races, but special challenges like dodging traffic or hitting chains of boost pads, all of these events have 3 levels of difficulty and earn you stars, which allows you to unlock things like mods and extra characters. There's a large number of events to go through although some of the special challenges, particularly battle races, can be something of a pain to deal with.
|The world tour map is fairly large, and covers dozens of events.|
One of this games biggest strengths is it's soundtrack. not content to simply port songs over from their respective games, several of the songs have been updated and remixed, and the results are amazing. A few standout tracks include Carrier Zone's take on Afterburner's stage 1 theme as an 80's style rock song that sound like something out of Top Gun, or Burning Depths version of "We are Burning Rangers", There's a lot of good music here. Sound holds up just as well, tires squeal, weapons fire with a satisfying fwoosh, and vehicles make this nice mechanical sound whenever they transform, of particular note is the game's announcer, who's fittingly loud and energetic and who's voice actor clearly had way too much fun with this. This is a good sounding game.
|Each racer has several mods you can unlock, which alters how they perform.|
Overall, this is a good kart style racer, which is impressive given how rare it is to see one outside of Mario Kart. If you're looking for a game like Mario kart to play on your PC, or other system for that matter as this was a multi-platform release, this will do nicely. That alone is enough to make the game worth looking at, however beyond that the game's biggest strength is how much of a love letter to all things Sega it is. If you like Sega and grew up with their games and systems back in the day? This thing is pure Sega fanservice and you'll find a lot to love here.
Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed was developed by Sumo Digital and published by Sega. It is available on Steam.