Oct 18, 2013
Drift Mania: Street Outlaws is the latest in the series of Drift Mania games by Ratrod Studios, with the scene shifted to street racing. But is it worth playing?
There isn’t much content available without a lot of gameplay in Drift Mania: Street Outlaws. From the start of the game one car and one track is unlocked. Unlocking additional tracks is far from a simple task. For each track you can race on there are a number of achievements, such as drifting a certain distance or finishing in a time limit. Once enough of these are achieved, the next track is unlocked. Cars can be bought at any time, but are very expensive.
Once on the track, Drift Mania: Street Outlaws is a fairly basic racing game, albeit with a focus on drifting. Drifting well and racing fast awards you points, while driving off the track or hitting walls takes them away. Scores can be uploaded to global leaderboards or shared on social networks. Getting higher scores earns you slightly more money as well.
Disappointingly, Drift Mania: Street Outlaws is just not a fun game. The racing feels hollow and boring, featuring none of the speed or finesse of games like Real Racing or the Asphalt series. The game has no real atmosphere and mindlessly lapping a track while doing lot of sliding isn’t really enjoyable. Cars tend to go from solid traction to none rather too quickly. Anyone who has played a good rally or drift racing title knows that the feeling of being on the edge of control, but skilled enough to keep the car sliding is what makes games like this fun. DM:SO fails in this regard.
Unfortunately the problems continue for Drift Mania: Street Outlaws, as it has some poor controls. The gameâ€™s control is so heavy and imprecise that it is hard to turn with any kind of grace. Fine control is nearly impossible.
DM:SO also has a very unbalanced money system. While you can buy any car or track in the game with in game money, itâ€™s nigh on impossible to do so. Finishing a race earns you about $100. The third cheapest car in the game costs $11,250. There is just no way to make progress at more than a glacial pace unless you spend real money.
Graphically, Drift Mania: Street Outlaws isnâ€™t much to look at. While it certainly isn’t a bad looking game the car models are quite boxy and the gameâ€™s environments just pale severely compared to other racing games available.
While engine sounds are good and the music is tolerable, the game does a fairly lousy job at conveying how much traction your tyres have though sound. Anyone whoâ€™s played a racing game for any length of time will be able to â€œfeelâ€ how close their car is to losing traction completely via the sound the tyres make. For a game as centred on drifting as DM is, the lack of good tyre feedback sound is a rather large oversight.
Ultimately, Drift Mania: Street Outlaws is not a good game. Its racing action isn’t very interesting, its money system is annoying and there are just so many better racing games on Android.