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Sonic and All-Stars Racing Transformed preview

Report by Laurie Blake

Sonic and All-Stars Racing Transformed is revving up for a November launch and sets out to quite literally transform the kart racer.

Nintendo’s plump plumber has been dominating the go-karting scene since the original Super Mario Kart came out in 1992.

Transformed is hoping to change that, by making some fundamental changes to the classic kart racer mechanics.

The big twist is that your car can shift form into a boat or a plane, but only once you pass through a transformation gate.

Gareth Wilson, the Design Director at Sumo Digital, the game’s developer, explained why you cannot transform anywhere: “We tried it and surprise, surprise everyone transformed into a plane and flew away.”

To counter the restrictions on your transformation, Sumo have designed multidimensional tracks that provide plenty of opportunity for form-shifting fun.

Solid asphalt can crumble beneath your wheels leaving you nose-diving into a lake or hanging in mid-air.

There are also multiple routes, meaning canny players can shift into a plane form, which is slightly faster, at an earlier opportunity to gain an advantage.

We were lucky enough to go hands on with the game and are happy to report that Transformed is a lot of fun.

Gareth assured us that they had spent months getting the handling just right and it really shows from what we played.

Cornering and drifting was tight and responsive, with a little spurt of speed boost as you come into the straight.

In the boats you had to compensate a little as you floated through the turns, which meant those sections took extra skill.

Barrel rolling and weaving through open skies in the planes was by far the highlight.

All in all, Transformed put in an all-star performance; we are looking forward to this one in November.

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