Analysis Hot Wheels Unleashed.Speed, big jumps and endless drifts in an entertaining arcade with the license of Mattel.Even if you have never played with Hot Wheels, you surely know this line of miniature cars from Mattel that has transcended the world of children’s toys to become collectibles for all ages. More than 6000 million units have been sold thanks to a very affordable price and that if you are not interested in creating tracks to play with them, you can always get hooked on buying your favorite vehicles.
Of course this success is not maintained only with the scale figures. Mattel has worked on movies, series and a long list of video games with varying degrees of success. After collaborating with several weight licenses ranging from Rocket League , Forza Horizon , Need for Speed or Asphalt , now Hot Wheels gives the baton to Milestone – Ride , Monster Energy Supercross , MotoGP , MXGP or Valentino Rossi: The Game – which are the in charge of developing a pretty fun arcade speed game which sums up the spirit of the license: speed, collecting and customization, although it lacks a rung of ambition to become an essential of the genre.
Skidding in your living room
In our impressions we tell you the base of Hot Wheels Unleashed , a casual arcade where we play with one of the more than 60 car models available – many, but not as many as it could have – in miniature circuits that take place in different settings. The title plays with the scale of the toys, so any minimum height will imply a fall into the void and the light weight makes them a bit unstable when they jump down ramps, that is, we will need to maneuver a little in the air so that the car does not of bell turns or bouncing off the track.
The circuits contain some traps and surprises that make the race more fun, which, as we warned, lacks weapons or other offensive mechanics seen in karting or combat games; the only way to annoy our opponents is lunges. There are cobwebs that trap the vehicles, drive panels but also slow down the speed, moving parts in the forks that open or close the path, breakable obstacles and, ultimately, the transfer of Mattel circuits to video games, including loops and slopes. worthy of a roller coaster.
These races are fun and the control is very arcade. It does not reach the speed of a Ridge Racer or Burnout and the design of the official lines is quite comfortable even for novices – open curves, long straights – so it is usually more about managing the turbo of the vehicles and drifting as long as possible. than having great driving skills. The difficulty is affordable in the first tests of his campaign and any regular player of the genre will have no difficulty in leaving the rest of the squad behind within a few moments of starting. That changes as you progress, but in general we believe that this ease against AI negatively affects emotion, asUnless you make a series of blunders, you are going to run in the lead for many laps ; We recommend raising the difficulty if you have experience in arcades.
Progress in the campaign is open, you can choose different paths in case of finding a blockage.
Hot Wheels Unleashed has a main mode for a player that consists of exploring a map with a test network that we unlock. In this way, if we get a bad test, we can always choose another route and continue through other nodes and who knows, we could even find secret tests and rewards. You can imagine what you can find: races against the clock, competitions to get on the podium or the “boss” phases that are more demanding. Winning brings prizes that include virtual money and loot boxes, because of course, one of the pillars of Hot Wheels is collecting vehiclesrealistic or quirky looking. Each vehicle has different characteristics of speed, acceleration, control and stopping power, and its own capacity or type of turbo; If you find one that you like, you can always improve it and customize its appearance with a fairly simple color editor.
All these awards are therefore aimed at getting more content. Be it vehicles, money, parts for the track editor or decoration elements, little by little you will expand the collection and the performance of your cars. The rest of the modes are quite typical but no less important, from time trial mode to online multiplayer and split screen, which in the long run is where we will find more fun , but it remains to be seen if Hot Wheels Unleashed achieves a sufficiently powerful community in the middle. long term.
The bottom line is undoubtedly that Milestone has created a game that entertains even if it sometimes feels too “formal” and conservative, something that can come from the use of a license. We don’t necessarily ask for missile or mine-dropping vehicles, that’s what other speed games do and it doesn’t fit Hot Wheels, but in a way Unleashed isn’t “unleashed” – all it does is just what we might ask an arcade game to do. with the Mattel brand, but missing a surprise point.
Where Hot Wheels Unleashed more than meets what we could expect is in its circuit editor, with which you can create your dream track . You will probably know these types of editors from other games or even genres: connecting pieces, creating curves, adding obstacles, etc. It is quite intuitive although it is one thing to build a track and another to design a really exciting track, which requires experience and dedication. Those who enjoy the game will be able to get a lot out of it beyond the campaign and the “official” circuits.
Fold the track in the editor to give the shape you want to your circuit, add modules and interactive objects. The limit is your imagination.
Although it is not a very demanding game, < i> Hot Wheels Unleashed looks pretty good and all the attention is on Mattel vehicles and items. You can miss some more location to give variety to the atmosphere of the tracks but once the game begins we will pay very little attention to what surrounds us. We have played it on PlayStation 5 and it uses the adaptive triggers of the DualSense to give resistance to the pedal and the brakes, a function that we will see in all speed games.
The sound section has left us a little colder, not so much because of the quality, which accompanies and adapts the audio according to the use of turbos, but we are talking about fictitious cars and therefore the effects of the engine are somewhat generic, while the music electronics are quickly forgotten.
Hot Wheels Unleashed is a fun title for fans and not so fans of collectible toys , and that speaks well for a game based on such a license. If you are looking for a classic arcade and you are attracted to the idea of editing your circuits, it will surely meet your expectations. Could it be rounder? Yes, it is a very competitive genre and you will find better exponents section by section on any platform, in more chaotic, more spectacular slopes or with online communities with a guaranteed future. That does not mean that Milestone has taken this development very seriously and show that there is talent beyond their motorcycle simulators.