QubicGames are back with a new addition to their successful AiRace series; but will it take off like previous titles or will AiRace Xeno be as brutal as some of the crashes you’ll witness in game? Well many people say “if it ain’t broke then don’t fix it” and “you shouldn’t change a good thing” but following my review of AiRace Speed there were a few areas that I felt held the last game back. Therefore I made some recommendations that I believed could help the game take a step forward in terms of increasing the game’s appeal to new gamers and adding new features to keep current fans happy. That’s not to say AiRace Speed wasn’t a fun game to play however for the game to not become just another series that regurgitates the same old rubbish with a new coat of paint every release then changes were definitely needed.
Unfortunately AiRace Xeno remains pretty much the same as its predecessor because QubicGames decided to stick to what they know best. The game has the exact same concepts where the whole game revolves around racing against the clock instead of opponents and the only multiplayer feature being its online leader boards. I can’t help but think that the game is a massive let down because of this as there is just no real sense of there being a competitive edge to the game and it’s all something we’ve seen before. The only real difference Xeno has from Speed is there are three new look vehicles and nine revamped tracks of which the new designs do look good with the tracks seeming to feel a bit bigger using a few more obstacles throughout, making navigation all the more tricky. However other than a few new images the game feels pretty much the same and it would’ve probably made more sense to just release Xeno as an add-on pack than a whole new game.
The only positive I could really draw from the game was it still keeps that whole feel that reminds me of the old Wipeout games on the PlayStation. Yet that isn’t enough of a reason to make me want to play the game, it needs improvements and badly. First area that needs changes is the single player mode; it’s all well and good having a time trial mode but for the main racing mode you need to be racing against opposition not a clock, otherwise there is no real fun in it. Racing games need to be competitive and the whole having the quickest time thing only works when you’re in an arcade environment not when you’re playing a racing game on a console or PC. It doesn’t even need to be against a whole load of competition, even one-on-one races would make the game more appealing to play than having to race alone.
The second area that could do with improvement is the multiplayer area; it’s all well and good having leader boards to compete on but again it lacks a competitive edge not having people to race against. Now you wouldn’t have to make it actual online play where you’re racing other players live, although that would be the best solution in my eyes, you could even race against enemies ghosts like the way you compete in challenges against other gamers on Rayman Legends. This will again add an extra bit of a competitive edge to the game and will convince more people to tell their friends about the game so they can race each other online. Without developing the game like this though QubicGames risk losing some of their fan base because as far as I can see they’re rereleasing the same game in new packaging without adding any improvements.
Never the less this is all just my own opinion, fans of AiRace may actually prefer the game to stay as it is and if changes occurred maybe they’d start some kind of up rise against QubicGames. On the other hand they could agree with me word for word and therefore maybe the developers should take note of my feedback this time and incorporate it into any future releases. Either way I guess at the end of the day it is up to the developers on how they make the game and with it only being the small price of £2.29 they may not believe it is worth adding lots of new features to it. They’ll no doubt though conduct research groups that test the game pre-release to see what people think and to get feedback from said groups to find areas of the game that may need tweaking. But if that is the case I find it hard to believe no one has made my suggestions before so maybe they don’t test the game or maybe they just ignore the information they’re given. The point is with a bit of work this could be a big hit game and it is a shame that QubicGames haven’t tried stepping it up.
Overall this isn’t a game I’d go and buy for myself having seen that there is nothing really new that AiRace Xeno has brought to the series. The games design is nice enough and the 3D effects as ever before are really nice but they’ve not done enough in terms of improving the game. Maybe with a few new features not only could QubicGames sell more games and have a possible big hit on their hands, but maybe they could also justify a rise in price to cover any excess costs. I mean if this had the improvements it needs I’d be willing to pay four times their current price to play because I know I’d be buying a quality game which I’d have fun playing against friends or AI opponents. As it stands though this is one game I wouldn’t recommend unless you had a few quid spare and limited space left on your SD card.
Disclaimer:All scores given within our reviews are based on the artist’s personal opinion; this should in no way impede your decision to purchase the game.