Jan 5, 2012
As I believe I have mentioned before, I’m a terrible (video game) driver, meaning my total lack of steering skills has me constantly crashing into barriers. Acceler8 is different though, in that you and the rugged little cars are not racing on tracks, but on open dusty plains and dunes. And when a giant hill gets in your way you can always drive over it. Very satisfying.
At first it appears that there is not much new in concept, that it is your standard racing game. But the difference becomes apparent when you see the vehicles. Low cabs, aerodynamic frames, and giant tires. These vehicles just look like are meant to be driven in the desert. They want to go up cliff faces and down into valleys. And luckily the developers have made all of that possible.
They’ve been quite creative with the different tracks, making use of different climates and scenarios. One is an ice-covered landscape which will challenge your handling skills. Another has a cross-over which can lead to hilarious accidents. And another has you facing oncoming traffic. There are even night time races, with the stars shining overhead.
The game controls are exactly what you’d expect. Tilt to turn, with the option to adjust sensitivity to compensate for your own comfort level. For example I have a tendency to flail a bit when I play, so I needed to tone down the responsiveness to stop it from being just tragic.
You can choose your cars based on their handling/speed capabilities, and winning races earns you the cash needed to buy better, stronger vehicles. You also must unlock each successive track to play it, so there is always a goal for you to reach.
I’m such a big fan of the “screw it, I’m going over” attitude toward racing that I’m very glad the developers have made that possible. The cars are fun to drive, and the landscapes look very gritty and real.
It’s unfortunate though that the graphics processing speed needed to keep up with the cars just isn’t there. I had no problems when doing time trials, but as soon as I began racing other cars the graphics suddenly got very stilted and blocky. In fact the ground under each car literally became a glitchy block of colour. Perhaps have improvements are in order.