For those who have read my previous reviews of racing/Karting games will know that I do have a very big soft spot for them, I’ve always found them relaxing and a genre I can just chill out with after a hard day’s work.
So, when Meow Motors came along and the lovely guys at ArtVostok sent me over a copy to review, I was looking forward to giving it a try.
The first thing the game does when you start to play is take you through a tutorial type of race where it explains all the different elements, how to drive, brake and drift. All pretty standard, very simplistic and does the job, couldn’t complain. It also takes you through the boosts that are available in each race, quite the like Mario Kart and Crash Team racing each boost gives you the ability to fire shots at other cars, speed away with a boost amongst others. These are unlocked as you go through the championships, which at the same time will unlock cars and racers along with it. There is a decent number of items to unlock, and I managed to get everything done and unlocked in one run.
You have a total of 10 racers, 10 weapons and 10 cars to unlock, each racer can come with certain effects such as boost bar charging quicker, etc. Simple little things which added to it and can give you food for thought when picking a racer.
The story mode which is the championships that you can play through is the main mode of the game, however, the issue that I had with it was that it was very short, I had the full thing done in under 3 hours with 90% of achievements unlocked as well. I only had to go over a few races again to mop up anything that I didn’t have, which brings me onto replayability. Once the championship is done, that’s it really for the game. There is no online multiplayer to play against others, only local split-screen multiplayer. Which if you’re like me and you don’t have that many friends to invite round and play, makes it kind of a redundant mode.
One issue I had with the game, which may not bother people as much as it did me, but one of the weapons, the shark rocket gives an annoying off-putting animation around the screen of shark teeth, which I personally don’t think is necessary, no other weapon does it when hitting you, I can see there is a shark on my head from what I can see on the screen, I don’t need the animation and annoying crunching sound to go with it.
One other off-putting thing was that when you’re targeted by the shark rocket or other targeting weapon, you can’t drop another weapon such as the mine as its about to hit to deter and stop it from getting you, it will get you regardless and the only way I found to escape them was to boost, however depending on how far away you were or whether you had a full boost bar would depend on whether you could escape as the targeting weapons only had a limited distance on them. So that was one way, but if it was fired directly behind or close to you, you wouldn’t be able to escape.
However, I will say that the game handles very nicely, I didn’t really have any issues with how it played driving wise, the drifting did take a little getting used to at first as it felt quite sharp and sudden, but once I had a handle on it, the drift challenges were easy to get through.
The championships that you go through consist of 3 variety of challenges. Standard races, drift challenges where you had to get a certain amount of points and strike, which was basically trying to destroy as many opponents as possible in the time limit allowed. They didn’t vary at all and these are the only 3 modes included, the only thing that really changed as you went through each championship was the timer would get longer on the Strike or Drift challenges and that the number of laps would vary between 1 and 2, until the final race which was a 5 lap race. The lack of diversity there was slightly disappointing but it did the job needed.
I enjoyed my time on Meow Motors, it played well and who can complain with playing as Cats! My main issue with the game is how short it was and the lack of replayability, especially as I managed to finish the championships within 3 hours.