8
Our overall verdict "silver"

beach-buggy-racing

Turning Tides

Beaches, buggies and racing – now there’s a title that’s right up my sand dune. Thanks to Vector Unit we can now taste some proper Kart racing and sandcastle demolition as Beach Buggy Racing slam bangs onto PSN, and can you believe it, this is the first of its kind on PlayStation 4, heck! Worthy of toe dipping and getting sand in every crevice? Bucket and spade packed, I’m going in to find out.

Beach Buggy Racing is a stylish off-road kart racer that brings some manic moments in a fight your way to the finish line racer. You’re up against five other petrol heads each with custom pimped up vehicles ranging from dune buggies and monster trucks to muscle cars. These rival drivers all come with a few tricks up their sleeves and give a good fight, so it’s up to your fine corner-cutting and power-sliding if you’re going to outsmart this motley crew of beach bums.

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Beach Buggy Racing loves its power-ups. There are twenty five to grab and hurl. From standard rockets to more exotic weapons like the Hydra, a three headed demon with a bite out of hell, all make for a fun and random off-the-wall racer. As you guessed it, because of these random pickups there is many an annoying moment to be had. Being turned into an ice cube just as the chequered flag looms can infuriate. You just have to remember this is buggy racing and just about anything is possible. There are some whacky vehicles to choose from, and whether you opt for the Rock Stomper, Lunar Rover or the Lambini they all perform great. On the other hand, the different choices of driver you place behind the wheel can make a big difference. Oog-Oog, Disco Jimmy, Roxie Roller and others all come with different strengths. Hitting the triangle button mid race displays their talents and can be a game changer.

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Career mode consists of nine series with each requiring a three stars finish. Your PSN friends’ score and times are displayed on each track, so taunting lap times from buddies like SaintDave throw sand in your eyes. As you progress your chosen vehicle gets maxed out, starting with out with a measly 25hp, engine class rises to 1000hp and also gets an appropriate visual overhaul as well. Even though races are short you’re still going to need to invest time to reach this land mark. The in-game currency collected lets you upgrade Acceleration, Speed and Handling. Also slap on new paintwork and decals to turn those beach babe’s heads.

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As well as the white sandy beaches you’re racing on, you’re taken on a tour of some bright cartoony looking locations too. There are fifteen tracks and each come jam-packed with visual attractions all looking polished and bursting with life. Each track also comes with a secret shortcut, that’s if you can find the buggers.

Beach Buggy Racing is not just about pinning a three ton ball and chain to the rear of an opponent’s car or releasing an almighty earthquake to take out other racers. The racing itself is pretty damn excellent. The cars handle with a great sense of control. Vector Unit know how to create a solid kart racer which makes this such an addictive one. It’s not just the normal races that will make you miss work, Boost Blitz, Follow the Leader, Elimination, and Stampede bring different winning elements to the race. You’ll need some skill in completing a handful of these especially if you want the Platinum trophy on offer.

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As well as the option of playing good old fashion split screen with up to 4 players in local multiplayer, if both you and a PSN friend have PS Plus, you can SharePlay and race together without your mate even having a copy of the game. Completing the package you have Quick Race, Championships and a Daily Challenge to further your enjoyment.

Conclusion

Vector Unit have given the PS4 a beautiful beach brawling racer with polished super smooth gameplay and some exciting and intense races. Jam packed with content, this game can happily be played in between big AAA titles without any disappointment, although you may just find yourself staying with Beach Buggy Racing longer than you expected. This is PS4’s only Kart racer and as Kart races go this is a stonker of a ride.

Lizard rating 8/10

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