Tag Archives: pqube

All-Star Fruit Racing Review

All-Star Fruit Racing is a new arcade kart racing game from developer 3DClouds, published by PQube, and is available for Xbox One, PS4, Switch and PC. It’s quite obviously inspired by a certain moustachioed Italian plumber, but will I go bananas over it or will it leave me s-peach-less. And no more fruit puns, honest.

All-Star Fruit Racing has all the elements that you would expect from a game in this genre. There are single player options for quick race, different options for creating your own competitions and of course, eleven championships to win in the career mode. Of course there is an online mode as well, but unfortunately I have been unable to test this due to a lack of player base before release. I plan to check this out more thoroughly after the game has officially released and plan to update this review. Also available is a split-screen couch multiplayer option, which is nice to have when other developers are moving away from this mode. There are also lots of customisation options in order to change the look of your kart, with new items to earn during your racing adventures.

All-Star Fruit Racing has 21 tracks which are themed around the four seasons and also has some additional Special Island tracks. There are also 22 characters to choose from, each with a fruit based special power, such as Anny with her Pineazooka (pineapple bazooka) and Faith with a Sharkmelon (yes, a melon that acts like a Shark). All the characters at the start are female, with more characters unlockable with progress. The lack of a male choice does feel a bit odd, and could give the impression that the game is squarely aimed at a young female demographic, which I don’t think is the case.

It’s when the racing starts you’ll see the obvious similarities to that other Kart game. There are a wide variety of races to compete in, ranging from five lap marathons to elimination races, and surprisingly there are short sprint races. I say surprisingly as I had no idea that the final race in a championship was that short and was busily admiring the track design, so before I knew what was happening I’d already lost! Some tweaking is needed here to clearly highlight the criteria of the upcoming race. Power-ups are obviously present and act in two different ways. The first is the familiar random pickups which we are so used to seeing. The second is where All-Star Fruit Racing tries something original. Collecting the fruit as you race around will fill four different reservoirs, represented by the four coloured face buttons. Filling all four will activate your special power, however you can choose to turn off some of the reservoirs in order to fire off different powers instead, meaning you could fire a defensive power if you find yourself out in the lead. It is an original idea, however it is somewhat confusing to start with as there is no on-screen indication as to which buttons activate which powers.

The special powers in Mario Kart do a great job in keeping the pack together, as a racer in last place will get the boost drops, whilst the racer out in front will get a defensive power. This is where All-Star Fruit Racing just doesn’t get it right. I’ve been in first place, half a lap in front of everybody else, but still get boost power ups. I’ve also been at the rear, with no chance of catching up to the leader and only get the defensive drops. So, this power-up system just appears to be completely random and is quite frustrating.

The best thing about All-Star Fruit Racing is it’s design. All the tracks look amazing, full of colour and detail and also have small hidden features that you could miss, such as the dinosaurs that sit beside the Dino-Juice track. There doesn’t feel to be as much love and care put into the drivers or cars, as there is no real distinction between the character models. The music and sound effects are also fine, although some of the dialogue does become repetitive after a while, but I never found myself reaching for the option to turn it off.

Gameplay wise it’s fine. It doesn’t do anything special, but it’s also not awful either. The first hour or two felt like a struggle, but it does have a certain amount of charm to it that shines through the longer you keep playing. Mastering the drift mechanic is the key to success, although some of the tracks are not designed in a way where it can be used effectively. There are some major issues that do affect the overall experience. Hitting the scenery or the sides of the track doesn’t really slow you down, instead you just kind of bounce off them and carry on your race. However, sometimes getting hit with a power-up can nearly cause you to stop completely, and the time it takes to get going again is frustrating, especially when your opponents all fly past. I know this is a feature of these types of games, but it does feel like it needs some tweaking. There are frame rate issues, most noticeable at the very start of each race, and when there are a lot of racers on-screen at one time. I’ve also witnessed some really strange sound issues, with a loud repetitive clicking noise occurring through a certain area of track.

Some improvements are also needed around the career mode. When starting a career there is no indication of how many races there are, and when finishing the championship you have to click the “return to main menu” option to get the winning animation. It is possible to replay every race straight away if you don’t get enough points as well, meaning there’s never any jeopardy in not doing well, apart from the time it takes to try again.

All-Star Fruit Racing is an OK racing game, but I feel like it’s been made for a young female audience. Fans of the casual racing genre will not find anything new to draw them in, apart from the great visuals.  However, it does have some charm, and managed to entertain this 44 year old male for a good six or so hours, but it’s probably not a game that I’ll continue playing.

Thanks to PQube Games for supporting TiX!

Get fruity with All-Star Fruit Racing

Launching on July 13, All-Star Fruit Racing will race on to Xbox One and PlayStation 4. While the name may sound a bit silly – childlike even – the game looks like it will be a ton of fun, just check out the trailer below.

Including split-screen for up to four players, the karting racer is set within lush vibrant environments that could have been plucked straight from Wreck-It Ralph’s Sugar Rush world. As you progress through the career mode, which is set across the four seasons of the year and in ‘Special Islands’, the action unfolds over 21 tracks. As you progress, kart parts are unlocked so you can really pimp up your fruity vehicles with over 32,000 possible kart combinations.

And no kart racer would be complete without the obligator weapons arsenal. Once powered up, the juicer can unleash a wave of fruit-based attacks to cripple your foes with individual shots as you gain juice or with an almighty attack once it is full to bursting.

With Dragster races, Hill Climbs, Elimination races, Time Attacks and modifier modes, there seems to be plenty of juicy content in All-Star Fruit Racing.

It’s Total Insanity in new FlatOut 4 gameplay trailer

FlatOut

PQube and Bigben Interactive have revealed an exciting new gameplay trailer for their arcade racing franchise, FlatOut4: Total Insanity.

The new video shows off a bit more of the new modes available in FlatOut 4. With a detailed and expansive damage system, all of the cars exhibit damage and explode in real-time and with each smash and crash. A feature that has appeared in previous releases in this franchise is also returning. Stunt Mode makes a welcome comeback, so whether you have the gentle soul of a wicker-basket salesman or the destructive desire to demolish all-opponents, you’re sure to find your niche in FlatOut 4.

This version of the arcade racer will feature 27 customisable cars including tributes to fan favourites and new additions to the garage. Race them around 20 tracks, including traditional derby racing, time trials, arenas, assault levels, carnage levels and much more. High speed collisions will appear even more realistic in the fully descructible environments.

A new Assault mode will have you using deadly weapons to slow or even destroy your opponents. Race along with up to eight-players in online mode or play locally with friends in a series of stunts. Alternatively, play Arena mode, featuring three different gameplay styles; Death Match, Capture the Flag and Survivor.

The legendary Stunt mode returns, with a mixture of six new stunts and six re-imagined classic stunts where the driver is flung through the windshield.

FlatOut 4: Total Insanity is scheduled to launch on Xbox One on the 17th of March.

Atari classics coming to Xbox One

Now who doesn’t like a bit of classic retro gaming, well I know I certainly do and the classics of the past will soon be returning to the Xbox One in the form of Atari Flashback Classics – Volumes 1 & 2.

Featuring over a 100 remastered titles, all in HD, players new and old can now relive the classics of Combat, Centipede, Star Raiders, Asteroids, Haunted House Adventures and many more. Each volume will contain 50 games and apart from boasting an extensive visual archive of classic artwork for each game, both volumes also include a range of new in-game features. Gamers can now play online, unlock achievements and try their best to secure a place on global leaderboards.

When asked about the up and coming release Frédéric Chesnais, CEO of Atari said “We are glad to bring these games to PS4 and Xbox One in Europe with our partners. These games have been released more than 45 years ago, but there is always something new and exciting about them, and I am sure all players will enjoy them.”

This was further followed up by Andy Pearson, Head of Marketing (Hardware and Tech) at distributors PQube, saying “With retro gaming increasing in popularity, it’s great to see more classics get a new lease of life on two of today’s best-selling consoles. Both games offer fantastic value for money and will help bring popular Atari 2600 video games like Asteroids to a new generation of gamers.”

So what can we expect in each pack;

Vol. 1, full games list:

3-D Tic-Tac-Toe Air-Sea Battle™, Backgammon™, Basketball™, Black Widow™ (Arcade), Blackjack™, Bowling™, Canyon Bomber™, Centipede®, Centipede® (Arcade), Circus Atari®, Combat®, Combat® 2, Desert Falcon™, Dodge ‘Em™, Fatal Run™, Football™, Home Run™, Human Cannonball™, Liberator™ (Arcade), Lunar Lander® (Arcade), Millipede®, Millipede® (Arcade), Miniature Golf™, Pong® (Arcade), Quadrun™, Radar Lock™, Realsports® Boxing, Realsports® Football, Realsports® Soccer, Realsports® Volleyball, Save Mary™, Slot Machine™, Slot Racers™, Space Duel (Arcade), Sprint Master™, Star Raiders®, Steeplechase™, Stunt Cycle™, Super Baseball™, Super Football™, Swordquest: Earthworld™, Swordquest: Fireworld™, Swordquest: Waterworld™, Tempest®, Tempest® (Arcade), Video Olympics™, Warlords®, Warlords® (Arcade), Yars’ Revenge®.

Vol. 2, full games list:

A Game of Concentration™, Adventure™, Asteroids®, Asteroids® (Arcade), Asteroids® Deluxe (Arcade), Atari Video Cube™, Basic Math™, Brain Games™, Breakout®, Casino™, Championship Soccer™, Checkers™, Chess™, Codebreaker™, Crystal Castles®, Crystal Castles® (Arcade), Demons to Diamonds™, Double Dunk™, Flag Capture™, Golf™, Gravitar®, Gravitar® (Arcade), Hangman™, Haunted House®, Major Havoc® (Arcade), Maze Craze™, Missile Command®, Missile Command® (Arcade), Night Driver™, Off the Wall™, Outlaw™, Race™, Realsports® Baseball, Realsports® Basketball, Realsports® Tennis, Redbaron™ (Arcade), Return to Haunted House™, Secret Quest™, Sentinel™, Sky Diver™, Spacewar™, Sprint™ (Arcade), Starship™, Stellar Track™, Street Racer™, Sub Commander (SUBMARINE COMMANDER®), Super Breakout®, Super Breakout® (Arcade), Surround™, Video Pinball™.

Atari Flashback Classics – Volumes 1 & 2 will be released on the 31st March for the Xbox One and for further information or to pre-order your copies check out the Official Website. So will this be a guaranteed addition to your gaming collection, I know it will be mine, or do you think we should leave the past in the past, let us know your thoughts?

Time to go Flatout on Xbox One

Flatout 4: Total Insanity is the brain child of Bigben Games. Publishers Pqube have today announced that they are working with Bigben to release Flatout 4: Total Insanity on the Xbox One this March. Check the trailer below.

Faltout 4: Total Insanity includes:

Features:

  • 27 customizable cars, including tributes to fan favourites and new additions to the garage.
  • 20 Tracks including traditional derby racing, time trials, arenas, assault levels, Carnage levels and much more.
  • High speed collisions in fully destructible environments.
  • The legendary Stunt Mode: a mix of six new stunts and six re-imagined classic stunts where the driver is flung through the windshield.
  • Arena Mode: featuring 3 different game play styles – Death Match, Capture the Flag, Survivor.
  • New Assault Mode: use deadly weapons to slow or destroy your opponents!
  • Up to 8 players Online Mode and play locally with friends in a series of stunts.

No exact release date but keep your eyes open this looks like fun.

 

Ride 2 reveal pre-order bonuses

Ride 2

Italian racing game developer, Milestone, have been around the block a few times. They created one of the earliest games I reviewed on Xbox One, the frankly average, Ride. They’ve been busy, however. As recently as last May, they revealed that they’d been working with publisher, PQube once more, on a new version of the motorbike racer. An upgrade if you will.

Ride 2 was revealed with a coming soon moniker and many two-wheeled petrolheads were hoping that this would see a  vast improvement on the orignal. The early signs are good.

Now, Milestone have revealed that there will be 174 bikes involved in Ride 2, including 16 modifiable models which spawn 16 new race models. That’s a grand total of 190 machines to choose from with pretty much the same categories as the first game, nakeds, superbikes and supersports. Ride 2 will also introduce some two-strokes, cafe racers and supermotos into the fray.

In addition to this, they’ve announced the pre-order bonuses that will be available for the game and Season Pass details, meaning that DLC is guaranteed. So, the pre-order details are as follows.

Pre-order Ride 2 from GAME and you’ll receive the Limited Edition Visual Book. This exclusive premium companion book will feature the favourite bikes of the development team along with commentary and detail on each of these machines.

Pre-order from ASDA in the UK and you’ll get the Suzuki Hayabusa 2015, the Aprilia Tuono V4 Factory 2015 and 10 bonus helmets.

Those of you who prefer to digitally pre-order can expect some exclusive content as well as two exclusive bikes, the Ducati Hypermotard SP and the Kawasaki ZZR 1400. A bonus of 10 helmets will also be yours.

As if that wasn’t enough, Milestone have been listening to the community and will dish out gifts in the form of nine packs with free special downloadable content from November to July so that the player can experience new, exciting adventures on dream bikes.

There will also be a Season Pass made available for the price of around 29.99 Euros. This collection of all of the DLC will let you fully live out the Ride 2 experience. If you decide not to go with the Season Pass, DLC will still be available to purchase separately, from the day of the game’s release.

Ride 2 will hit the tarmac from the 7th of October.

Here’s the lastest trailer that Milestone have released and it already looks better than the first iteration of the title.

Ride 2 rolling in soon

Ride 2

UK based games publisher, PQube have sprung a little bit of a surprise today, by revealing the announcement trailer for Ride 2. This console-only sequel to Miletone’s motorbike simulator, Ride, looks to be hitting Xbox One in the autumn of 2016 so far.

Ride 2 will feature over 200 two-wheeled machines to tame with an unprecedented level of customisation and exciting new race tracks to explore.

The major innovation in this second edition of the game will be the relationship between rider and motorcycle. This promises to be more connected than ever and directly integrated in the game, in career mode. The primary goal of the game is, as before, to race the bike of your dreams. To help you along with this, the game will offer a detailed customisation, including many more components for both rider and bike. You’ll be able to build your own machine from the ground up, in the finest detail, as well.

Another main draw is the ability to gather a collection of bikes in your garage and Ride 2 offers the promise of Two-Stroke, Supermotards and Cafe Racers that will bolster the line-up of bikes that were on offer in the first version of the game. These included Nakeds and Supersports among many others.

Track-wise, the new title will add the racer’s delight, the Nurburgring Nordschleife, Northwest 200 and other new circuits to help push the boundaries of competition.

As if all of this wasn’t enough, Milestone are introducing new game modes that will accompany players on the road of the true motorcyclist. There will be social interaction, competitive AI and many more graphical and physics enhancements that are to be revealed over the coming months.

I reviewed the first title, Ride, back in April last year. Re-reading that review and remembering how that game played, I hope for the fans’ sake that Milestone have taken some of the more generalised points on board.

Here’s the brief announcement trailer.

Ride 2 is scheduled for an autumn 2016 released on Xbox One.

Valentino Rossi shows us the MotoRanch

valentino rossi 01

There’s was a happy sigh from MotoGP fans when The Doctor was revealed to be the face and, indeed, name of the next officially licensed MotoGP title. Valentino Rossi has been one of the names, faces and characters of the sport. It’s fitting that the multiple MotoGP World champion has his own game title.

Love him or hate him, he’s one of the most successful motorcycle racers of all time. Publisher PQube have taken developer, Milestone’s new two-wheel tearaway title and revealed the MotoRanch VR46. This allows you to take part in the engaging Flat Track races and experience the adrenaline of the Americana and be part of the most exclusive event of year, called EnduRanch.

This revelation comes in the form of the new trailer, below. It features the Tavullia hills and valleys, surrounded by a suggestive and naturalistic environment. This is the frame for the exclusive MotoRanch VR46, which will open it’s doors for the first time when the game is released.

The MotoRanch represents a training field for Valentino Rossi and the VR46 Riders Academy and consists of different circuits. These circuits allow you to practice one of the most engaging disciplines; Flat Track. On a circuit specifically created for this, 12 riders challenge on their two-wheeled chargers. This will include the Flat Track Bike, specifically for this circuit. Using a technique which involves drifting with a foot outside to balance the weight, Flat Track seems on the surface to be a mixture of Motocross and Supermotard. The surface makes it just that little bit more different though.

The weather will also play a part in the riding style, with spring and autumn playing a part in deciding the outcome of the race.

MotoRanch will allow you to ride in four different competitions. Dritta, Alla Rovescia, EnduRanch and Americana. These all offer differing weather conditions, coupled with daytime and twilight riding to provide an extra challenge.

The MotoRanch VR46 will also feature “Valentino’s friends”. These are all riders on the racing circuit and will feature; Tony Cairoli, Alberto Tebaldi, Mauro Sanchini, Thomas Chareyre, Marco Belli, and British favourite, Guy Martin among many others.

Have a look at the MotoRanch VR46 trailer below for a little further information. Valentino Rossi The Game is scheduled for release on the 16th of June.

Get saddlesore with new Ride bike DLC packs

ride-dlc

Back in April, I reviewed the first motorbike racer I’d played since Road Rash. Ride wasn’t perhaps as good as it should have been, but it’s main focus, the bikes, looked good.

PQube and Milestone have decided that now would be about time to announce not one, but two new bike DLC packs.

Top Bikes Pack 1, available now for 7.99 Euros or your local currency equivalent, includes the following most requested 2015 bikes;

  • Triumph Street Triple RX
  • MV Augusta Brutale 800 Dragster
  • MV Augusta Brutale 800 Dragster RR
  • Ducati 1299 Panigale S
  • BMW S1000 RR – 2015
  • Yamaha MT07 – 2015
  • Kawasaki Ninja zx-10R – 2015

Top Bikes Pack 2, available separately, now, for the same price as Top Bike Pack 1, includes;

  • Honda RC 213 V-S
  • BMW F800R – 2015
  • Kawasaki Z800 – 2015
  • Suzuki GSR 750R
  • Honda CBR1000RR – 2015
  • MV Augusta F4 RC
  • Honda CBR600RR – 2015

It’s fair to say that these have received a little criticism from the community for the content as the bikes lack variety in the makes and models from those already included in the game. The main criticism seems to be that the bikes are just recoloured older bikes.

PQube, Milestone, the community are crying out for a track pack or two, will they be pleasantly surprised?

Have you played Ride? Are you planning on getting these new bikes? Let us know below.

Take a ‘RIDE’ around Sierra Nevada

PQube keep on pushing the motorbike racing scene and their latest title RIDE is hoping to “tear up the rulebook” to bring a new lease of life to the world of motorcycling. Take a look at the latest gameplay footage below – I’m not sure what version the build is, but it does look a bit rough around the edges! Let’s hope that some flare is added to make RIDE stand proudly on the Xbox One.