Super Toy Cars Review (Switch eShop) – “RC Pro Am Not”

Remember the days when we were younger, with a room full of toys (unlike today’s era that strictly relies on iPods and iPads), getting creative and using our imagination? A majority of us would love to play with Hot Wheels and Matchbox cars and pretend to race them through an obstacle-filled room. Spanish indie developer Eclipse Games has taken an old-childhood pastime and crafted it into a frantic car-combat racing game. Is this title worth your time or should this stay locked up in the toy box?

Super Toy Cars provides players with a Career mode, consisting of 8 circuits (which are in the shape of a toy block) with 6 events in each. The events are all varied, between your standard Races, to Time Trials, Time Attack, Evade, and Elimination modes. This helps keep events fresh and prevents the career from becoming too repetitious. Throughout events, you will earn credits (based on the position you place) that can be used to either unlock better vehicles or even upgrade them. Upgrading will allow your vehicle to improve its top speed, acceleration, handling, weight, drifting and boost stats. There are 16 vehicles to choose from, ranging from cars that are all about speed to those that are pertained more towards drifting. The AI during the events can be quite challenging, making you work for earning 1st place in each event.

When you’re not going solo, you can gather 3 of your buddies or family members to play some 4-player competitive multiplayer. You’ll be able to choose from any of the game’s 15 tracks (three of which are exclusive to the Switch version) across 4 environments. Multiplayer works just like the single player, adding more fun into the mix knowing that you’re going up against people you know. Also, all the vehicles are already unlocked for multiplayer, which is a nice feature so that no one is restricted to the car of their choice. The game is strictly a local multiplayer affair and has no online mode. However, there is online leaderboard support.

In terms of controls, the game has a traditional control scheme. Much like the Wii U version, there is no option for motion steering (for those who enjoy that). Steering has been tweaked a bit from my experience with the Wii U version and feels a bit tighter than before. I found myself struggling less with the steering during racing, however the physics are still wonky. Vehicles get caught on environmental objects far too easily. Thankfully, the game auto-respawns you the moment that you get caught in an object, but it still becomes frustrating as to how easily and often this occurs. You can even drift in the game, but that rarely feels natural enough to rely on. Most of the time you’ll find yourself really slowing down to a halt or colliding into a wall unintentionally when drifting. On the track, you’ll be able to pick up items to use against opponents. These can range from lock-on missiles, to oil spills and mines, to even shooting an 8-ball to crush your opponents. The weapons are actually all quite useful and balanced well, without anything feeling overly powerful.

One of the more appealing features in the game on the Wii U version was the Track Editor mode. While it was not a perfected feature, it was one they really added to the game’s longevity and content. Sadly, the Switch version has omitted this entirely. When reaching out to the developers on this, they stated that it was removed for technical reasons and due to the minimal use from the Steam version of the game. They also stated that it’s a feature that benefits better when sharing content with others, but the game never supported that prior due to the complexity to get it to work. Frankly, removing content like this is a shame, as creating tracks, whether home or on-the-go, would’ve been a good feature to keep players returning.

Visually, Super Toy Cars is a fairly decent looking game. The environments are littered with household objects and toys that are nicely crafted, with some solid lighting effects as well. The Switch version boasts some slightly enhanced visuals from its Wii U counterpart. Now the game can handle eight racers on-screen during races, as opposed to the previous game’s six. Draw distance seems to be a bit sharper and less blurry than before as well. The framerate seems to run unlocked, but depending on how many racers are on-screen seems to fluctuate the framerate between 30fps and closer to the 50fps range. Time attack events where it’s only you racing on the track seems to approach that higher framerate. Standard races though stick at the 30fps. It is fairly stable throughout a majority of the experience, with only few instances of it dropping, but nothing too major or noticeable. Although, the visuals can be buggy, with cars driving through objects instead of colliding with them at times. Another buggy scenario was when a car respawned on me, it resulted in my car launching high into the air doing flips. While that’s quite comical, that also resulted in losing an Elimination event. Audio wise, the soundtrack is appropriate and accompanies the game pretty well. The car sound effects on the other hand are very mundane. They sound muffled and lifeless.

Issues aside, Super Toy Cars is a fairly decent indie racing game on the Switch, but needs a bit more polish. What’s here is a somewhat enjoyable, yet flawed experience. There’s a good amount of content, but the removal of the track editor is certainly a shame. The car physics are also a bit wonky and need some more fine-tuning (especially drifting). Also, the Switch version is a few bucks more than the previous Wii U version, which is strange considering an entire mode was removed in this version. That being said, for $9.99, it’s not a bad game, but rather one that needed a little more time on the production line. If you’re in the mood for a car-combat racing game and have done everything there is to do in Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, maybe give Super Toy Cars a shot. Just be prepared to deal with some cumbersome physics.

Overall Score: 5.5 out of 10 = Wait for a price drop…

A special thank you to Eclipse Games for providing us a review copy for Super Toy Cars! Review based on Switch version.

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