PixelJunk Racers: 2nd Lap Review
PixelJunk Racers: 2nd Lap box art
System: PS3 (PSN) Review Rating Legend
Dev: Q-Games 1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid 4.0 - 4.4 = Great
Pub: SCEA 2.0 - 2.4 = Poor 4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy
Release: Aug. 24, 2010 2.5 - 2.9 = Average 5.0 = The Best
Players: 1-8 3.0 - 3.4 = Fair
ESRB Rating: Everyone 3.5 - 3.9 = Good

For me, the game does most of its shining in Ghost Attack, a mode that allows you to compete against ghost runs of other players around the world. What makes this mode unique is that once you pick a challenge to compete in, you’re matched with the ten closest players to your rank. The matchmaking makes sense and seems to work smoothly, and though you’re not playing with players live, it’s still a great way to scratch that competitive itch.

PixelJunk Racers: 2nd Lap screenshot

On the production front, 2nd Lap is completely solid. The visuals are a bit plain, and again, the cars are just a bit too tiny. The framerate, however, is smooth, and everything about the game looks clean. There’s little offered, though, in the way of customization, and the graphical variety is also quite sparse.

Aurally, I wasn’t terribly impressed with PixelJunk Racers. As a matter of fact, one of the first things I did when starting up the game for the first time was find the options menu and lower the music. The sound effects work well alongside the gameplay, but I wasn’t a fan of the music, to say the least.

Though Q-Games has seen much success with the PixelJunk series, PixelJunk Racers has to be my least favorite of the bunch. It’s perfectly competent and polished to a fine buff, but when it comes to straight-up fun, 2nd Lap doesn’t pack much of a punch. Most challenges are over in seconds, yet that often feels like too long. When you’re playing through what is essentially a mini-game that overstays its welcome, you know there’s a problem.

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If you purchased the first game, 2nd Lap will be completely free, making it a no-brainer. For everyone else, the game’s a hard sell at roughly $7. Between the, tiny cars and the ho-hum courses, the PS3 feels like the wrong platform for this arcade-action game. Were it a Mini (with more appropriately sized cars) priced at $2-3, I might wave the green flag on 2nd Lap. As it stands, however, you may want to try before you buy.

By Tony Capri
CCC Freelance Writer

RATING OUT OF 5
RATING DESCRIPTION
4.0
Graphics
I enjoyed the look and artistic concept of the game, but the vehicles are just a tad too small.
3.5
Control
The controls feel good and tight. Switching lanes, however, isn’t smooth enough to jive well with having to speed through gobs of traffic.
3.5
Music / Sound FX / Voice Acting
The sound effects sit well alongside the gameplay, but the music is lackluster, if not slightly annoying.
3.3
Play Value
There are quite a few clever ideas underneath the hood here, but the courses feel almost more like micro games, the fun factor is so fleeting. Setting aside the presentation, 2nd Lap feels more like a Playstation Mini and should probably be priced as such
3.4
Overall Rating - Fair
Not an average. See Rating legend above for a final score breakdown.

Game Features:

  • Unlimited Racing Action: 16 Sixteen core racing modes with varying degrees of difficulty for a total of thirty-two modes, including an in-depth single-player tournament and offline multiplayer modes (up to seven players!).
  • Full HD at 1080p: Speed through 10 ten richly detailed courses.
  • SIXAXIS Wireless Controller: Use the controller’s left and right buttons on the D-pad to steer through traffic, master cornering, and overtake rival vehicles.


  • Screenshots / Images
    PixelJunk Racers: 2nd Lap screenshot - click to enlarge PixelJunk Racers: 2nd Lap screenshot - click to enlarge PixelJunk Racers: 2nd Lap screenshot - click to enlarge PixelJunk Racers: 2nd Lap screenshot - click to enlarge

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