Mini Motor Racing is a relatively new Windows Phone 8 arcade styled racing game with quality graphics and challenging racecourses. The cars remind me of those miniature RC cars and there are plenty racing car styles to unlock. Add over three-hundred races to win with two racing modes and Mini Motor Racing will not grow stale too quick.
The game has seen decent success over on iOS and based on what we've seen, Mini Motor Racing should see similar here on the Windows Phone 8 platform.
Mini Motor Racing's main menu has your customary options to jump into game play, access the game's options, visit the game's in-app purchase store and options to follow the game on a variety of social networks.
Game options include audio/sound effects levels and choosing a steering option. Steering options include three different styled.
- Toggle: This option has two directional arrows for left/right turns and a nitro button lining the bottom of the screen.
- Tank: A similar layout to the Toggle style but with the left/right turn buttons placed in the bottom corners of the screen and the nitro boost in the bottom center.
- Slider: Exchange the left/right steering buttons with a slider bar to control your car's direction and place the nitro button next to it.
- Wheel: This option has a virtual steering wheel in place to guide your race car with the adjacent nitro button.
Additional control options include the ability to flip the controls, auto acceleration, and a shake option to activate the nitro boost.
It's difficult to say which steering option is the best. I like the Tank option that places your steering controls in more of a natural location. The Wheel option was nice but with an overhead perspective, it is easy to get confused on which way you should turn the wheel. I'm not sure if a tilt control option would have been better.
Mini Motor Racing's gaming modes include a Career Mode and a Quick Race. Quick Race is just that, a quick way to jump into game play when you only have the time or desire for a single race. You can choose one of the twenty available race cars and thirty-eight race tracks. Cars and tracks are progressively unlocked as you win races.
Career Mode is just that too. You compete in races to earn cash that can be used to unlock additional cars and upgrade cars. You compete across the same thirty-eight tracks and have the same twenty cars that are available in the Quick Race mode.
Car choices range from your typical dirt track racer to a school bus to an Indy Racer. Tracks have an equally wide range that includes dirt tracks at the beach to road courses in the city. The selection of tracks also includes day and night racing.
The racing screen for Mini Motor Racing has your position and race times in the upper left corner of the screen and in the upper right corner, you will see a map of the track. Across the bottom of the screen will be your racing controls. You begin the race with three Nitro Boosts and you can add to that by collecting power-ups that appear randomly on the track.
Game play is straightforward. You maneuver your car around the track with the goal of winning the race.
Racing can be a little on the brutal side with other racers side-swiping your car, pushing you off the track and overall being very aggressive drivers. You will need to use your Nitro Boosts in a timely manner to create a little separation between you and the other cars.
The key to Mini Motor Racing is finding a steering option that you are comfortable with. The selection is more of a personal preference than a design issue. Each option is responsive but you may find one control option more comfortable than the other.
I have to admit that after playing Mini Motor Racing for a short period, I wasn't that impressed. Graphics were really nice, the designs of the tracks creative and the races were definitely competitive. What made the game un-appealing was the steering controls.
However, once I settled in on a configuration (the Tank option) that was comfortable the game began to grow on me. The Career Mode has plenty of gaming opportunities where you can earn cash that can be used to upgrade your existing race fleet and buy new cars to expand your fleet.
Mini Motor Racing isn't strong enough to knock off Asphalt 8: Airborne but it is a strong contender if you need a more casual racing game. While the controls will take a few laps around the racetrack to get used to, the biggest downside to Mini Motor Racing is the lack of a trial version. I've never understood the logic behind not providing a trial version because it is a great way to promote you app or game.
The full version of Mini Motor Racing is currently running $.99 and the game is available for Windows Phone 8 devices. You can find your copy of Mini Motor Racing here in the Windows Phone Store.