Like another sequel to the movie Speed, you can’t slow down in this old school arcade racer. But would you want to?
MotorHeat, from MilkStone Studios, is available from the Xbox Live Indie Game section. The game takes the player back to a much simpler time, when you didn’t need a driving license to enjoy a driving game. Who needs gears, different builds and vehicles, or even an accelerator to have fun?
The objective is simple. Drive and don’t crash. You scream along a busy highway for as long as you can, before the time runs out. You get a scored for passing cars and, upon reaching a certain score, you level up and receive more time. Time can also be gained from picking up the glowing coloured boxes that litter the highway, along with other helpful abilities such as boost and invincibility. Caution should be taken though, as some of the vehicles on the road do look surprisingly similar to the boxes, especially when approached at high speed.
Each time the player levels up, driving conditions change. What starts out as a nice sunny day will soon become cloudy, foggy or even pitch black, which makes for a challenge. Crashing not only dents the players ego, it also applies a time penalty and running out of time equals game over.
The game is controlled quite simply, with the left stick in charge of steering and the right trigger activating the boost function. Boosting will give an amazing sense of speed and really raise the tension.
With only one game mode to talk of, you may be tempted to think that MotorHeat does not offer the deepest gameplay. You would be right, but do not underestimate the desire to constantly better your score, and better that of your friends. I have not felt competitiveness like this since Trials HD.
Players can customise their vehicle, but only the paint job. There are also awards to be found within the game, but some of these require a serious amount of time to achieve.
For the price of only 240 MSPoints, MotorHeat offers a very simple, yet strangely satisfying experience. I urge everyone to go and get this game.