Review – Nickelodeon Kart Racers 2: Grand Prix

Nickelodeon is a pay TV channel that has existed since the late seventies. It has evolved a lot since its birth and the memories that come with its programs vary greatly from generation to generation. Being a nineties child, I personally remember CatDog, the Angry Beavers, Rugrats and Ren and Stimpy, a younger generation might remember Spongebob, Hey Arnold and Avatar. Regardless, there is a show for everyone and developers Bamtang Games have kindly brought our favourite characters to the kart-racing world.

Let’s be honest, everyone enjoys a kart racer and while Nickelodeon Kart Racers 2: Grand Prix predecessor was the victim of some very average reviews, it is lucky for us gamers that the developers listened to the feedback and came out stronger with its second installment. The competitiveness is dialed up to eleven and the win mentality is stronger than ever. It is like the Monopoly of racing games, and although it can tear family and friends apart from time to time, with the hypothetical board sometimes getting flipped, it is always a blast.

PM vsmuqpfz

Nickelodeon Kart Racers 2: Grand Prix has upped this title to thirty playable characters, however with the inclusion of all the pit-crew the total amount of characters in game goes up to a whopping one hundred. Each playable character has their own unique vehicle and throughout each race Slime Tokens can be earned by either driving through them on the track or by winning races.  Slime tokens are then spent in the Garage where the player can unlock various upgrades to the engines, exhausts, wheels and paint jobs. Pit-crew are characters that are selected before a race that give the player a bit of an edge over their opponents by bringing a small bonus to their driving once enough slime has been collected. Slime is prevalent on each track and pit-crew bonuses vary for each character, some awarding the player with an item box upon activation and some giving the player a boost.

PM havonrea

There are twenty-eight tracks in total, each with a theme from a different Nickelodeon program, which are all unlocked from the moment the player loads the game. They seemingly get more difficult the deeper the player gets into the list and demanding more precise driving in the later stages. Each track has various solid obstacles to be avoided or jump pads, ramps and boost pads, along with some sharp corners that the player can choose to navigate through entering a drift. Drifting will give the player a boost on exit and depending how long the vehicle is held sideways, dictates the amount of boost warranted.

PM aashiww

The player is given three difficulties to choose from, slow, medium and fast. The game is catered more towards children, so even the hardest setting is really not that much of a challenge. This does mean that the kids will love it; with an added bonus of an auto-acceleration option for the youngest of the pack so all they have to do is focus on is the steering. My four-year-old girl had a ton of fun playing this with me, which always brought a smile to my face.

There are three game modes for single player, racing, arena or challenges. Racing is pretty self-explanatory, with three modes to play:

  • Slime Grand Prix – Pick one of eight Grand Prix events, hold the highest total points at the end of the fourth race and take home the trophy.
  • Free Race – The player can hone their skills on a track of their choice against opponents. Practice makes perfect.
  • Time Trial – Try and beat each track’s best time against a CPU’s ghost.

Arena gives the player a chance to show off their skills with the games box items:

  • Free-for-All-Battle – First player to hit their opponents with items ten times wins.
  • Control the Golden Spatula – The Golden Spatula spawns within the map and the first player to pick it up and hold on to it for 15 consecutive seconds a total of three times is the winner. A player drops the Spatula when hit by an opponent’s item.

Challenges are exactly that, with forty-two to complete, each one unlocking a new playable character or pit-crew. They vary from hitting a required number of targets before a timer runs out, winning difficult races and racing one-on-one in “Boss battles” that get more difficult as the player unlocks more and more.

PM mniovew

There is local multiplayer for up to four players and online multiplayer. With local multiplayer becoming a bit of a lost art in the modern age, it is always refreshing to see games with that option and especially titles like this that can be enjoyed by any age. Local games give the option of Grand Prix, Free Race or Arena battle, with online only have the option of an Online Cup or Free Race through either Matchmaking or private lobby. I did have some troubles finding games through matchmaking but I can only put it down to a limited player base.

PM meyzpi

Graphically Nickelodeon Kart Racers 2: Grand Prix does well at what it is supposed to do for its genre. The developers have had to bring a lot of 2D character models to 3D and so while it is a little bit off putting seeing these characters in a different light, they have done a very good job. Vibrant colours dominate the screen throughout gameplay, but tracks remain easy to follow and the opportunistic shortcuts are easy to pick up if the player is game enough to try it on.

Music is never really in the foreground, aside from when in the menu and the beginning of a new race. It is majority up-beat, sticking with the theme of each track and of course the music speeds up upon crossing the line into the final lap. Each item in game has its own unique sound and sometimes when there was a bit of a traffic it would sound like a poorly executed orchestra, with footballs swinging this way, boomerangs being thrown that way, but the sound always remained as if it was a cartoon.

PM intmii

[wp-review id=”8437″]

Brando for One More Game

7Good – This is an all-round solid game that delivers some features really well. It’s a game that most gamers will likely enjoy. If you’re not a fan of the game or genre then you may want to wait for a deal before picking it up.

Please click the link here for a full rundown of our rating scale.

Nickelodeon Kart Racers 2: Grand Prix was reviewed on an Xbox One X. It is also available now on PlayStation 4 and Nintendo Switch, December 1 for PC .

The publisher kindly provided code for this game. All thoughts on this game are ours and ours alone.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *