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Platform

Playstation 2

 

Genre

Racing

 

Publisher

Vivendi

 

Developer

Radical Ent.

 

ESRB

E (Everyone)

 

Released

Q4 2005

 

 

- Lots of fun mini-games

- “Clashing” system is quite cool

 

 

- Pretty frequent and long load times for a console game

- About as difficult as a Speak-and-spell

- Whole ‘lotta gophering

 

 

Review: Burnout Revenge (PS2)

Review: Gran Turismo 4 (PS2)

Review: Midnight Club 3: DUB Edition (PS2)

 

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Crash Tag Team Racing

Score: 7.0 / 10

Crash Tag Team Racing is a blending of more than one genre, which is strange in of itself, because it borrows so heavily from other franchises – Mario Kart, Monkey Ball, Mario 3D… the list goes on an on. But that’s not the strange thing, few would actually try to blend game elements from all of those franchises and make a game of that. Does it work? Well, kind of. Crash Tag Team Racing is a bright and comically animated game that will impress the young or those young at heart. Using slapstick and fart-style humor to keep it light and make it no worse than a good old Wile E. Coyote/Roadrunner cartoon.

 

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The main plot is that mad scientist Von Clutch runs an amusement park and his power crystals that run the park have been taken and hidden within the confines of the park. So he wants to hold a series of races, and hopefully someone will recover them through the course (hah, puns) of the events. So for this grand prix of carnage, we have eight different stereotypes… err… characters to choose from. And then the game starts… and there is no racing. It starts off with a traditional platform adventure game where you can talk to the other racers and collect coins. Coins can buy you power crystals or different cars while the other racers usually require some object or another to release their next car (and require you to go get it for them). Enter the gophering phase! You now run around the open areas collecting coins and the before mentioned objects… fun? No, not really. An alternate way to make some bank is through the mini-games that are spread throughout the levels – the bowling one is straight out of Monkey Ball, but they certainly make for a nice 5 minute diversion.

 

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When you actually find one of the racing venues, you get a choice of type of race (besides the traditional race there’s: Fast Lap Challenge – self explanatory, Crashinator Challenge – intentionally slam into the scenery, Run and Gun Challenge – target shooting at objects while racing, and Rolling Thunder – shoot at fellow racers) then have at it. Races are done with a nice little twist, when you collide with other racers, you can choose to fuse together in a “clash” where one 

person drives and the other mans a newly created turret and wreak havoc on your opponents. 

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When “clashed” the damage that you can unleash on your opponents increases not only dramatically, but the precision for firing makes it truly dangerous. 

 

For Crash Tag Team Racing, all of the weapons in the game are comedic in nature – robotic dogs, chickens, cows… that sort of thing; and all “deaths” are quickly brought back to life no worse for wear than a little behind in the race. When not flinging barnyard animals like snowballs, you can earn boost by driving aggressively (this is a racing game, not just a video version of Death Race 2000) with drifting but you still get the most benefits from smoking your opponents.

 

To the negatives: I’m not a big fan of the need to wander around and collect gold coins to progress through the game, it’s a tedious but important part of the game. The loading times are way too long for a game of this type – every zone you enter has a load wait, every race, every mini-game, even when you are replaying the same thing! Load screen. Annoying! The difficulty level is also rather poorly implemented, I didn’t find the game challenging and rarely finished less than 1st place even at the highest levels with the difficulty juiced. Positives: Very bright and fun animation. Mini-games are a blast! I think I ended up playing them more than the actual racing. Crash Tag Team Racing is a fun game to play with younger players.

 

All in all, Crash Tag Team Racing isn’t a terrible game, just one that tries to be a jack-of-all-trades and master of none. It’s a decent game, one that is worth a rent.

 

- Tazman

(January 22, 2006)

 

“You know this man has forgotten more about pain than you'll learn about pain... about forgetting about.”

- Phil (Harvey Birdman)

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