What is it

Mantis Burn Racing – ‘Elite Class’
Price: £1.99

– Three new hover vehicles

The ‘Elite Class’ DLC Pack includes three new high-performance Hover vehicles that will see your Mantis Burn Racing experience really take off! Put your driving skills to the ultimate test with these thrillingly-fast, futuristic-looking ‘Elite’ vehicles that use powerful turbines to hover above the ground making them less affected by the tracks’ surface. Each of the light, medium and heavy weight vehicles included come with their own unique handling and performance characteristics and are all playable in single-player, split-screen and online modes.

– New Elite Career

Hover vehicles also come with their own 12 event ‘Elite’ career that is unlocked immediately and only available with this DLC pack.

Mantis Burn Racing – ‘Snowbound Pack’
Price: Free

– Brand new location

Introducing a brand-new snow-themed environment featuring four stunning tracks that add new depth to the game’s single-player, split-screen and online modes. Put the freeze on your opponents as you jump, bump and slide your way across treacherous, wintry snowscapes that will push your driving skills to the limits!

– New Career Seasons

Your Mantis Burn Racing single-player campaign just got even more challenging with the addition of season’s Two and Three of the Veteran Class career, with 34 extra events to complete in your quest to be crowned Mantis Burn Racing Champion.

What did we think

The ‘Elite Class’ hover vehicles really do feel like they’re designed for players who are ‘elite’ at the game. They demand accurate control, perfect precision, and the right amount of acceleration – if you don’t deliver you’ll quickly yourself smashing around the course like a loose dodgem in a pinball machine.

In some instances they don’t compliment the track design of Mantis Burn Racing, especially on those that are narrower and full of tricky bends (you’ll particularly notice this on the city themed tracks). The high speed of the new hover vehicles on some of these courses could see a race written off with just one crash, with the rubber-band racing AI and unforgiving nature of your opponents when they’re ahead leaving you stuttering behind.

Mantis Burn Racing

However, when you get used to the ‘Elite Class’ vehicles you’ll find they bring a whole new way to play Mantis Burn Racing. The extreme speeds and slick look of the hover vehicles adds a futuristic feel to the game too, which is a far cry from the old-school vibe that the base game alone gives off. They just look so cool – I mean, who’s going to go for wheels when you can literally float across the track? It adds a sublime level of awesomeness to the game that doesn’t just make it look different, but feel different too.

The new Elite Season adds extra challenges to the game’s already expansive career mode. It also allows you to test out your hover vehicle skills from the get go, which is a great way to show off the new vehicle type – quite often racing games simply put new vehicles into the car catalogue and let you use them freely, but having events that cater directly for them is a much more enjoyable approach that offers an actual sense of progression.

Mantis Burn Racing

I was surprised that the new Elite Season didn’t focus primarily on the new snow tracks to begin with though. I’d have thought that the opening few challenges would’ve allowed players to dig right into the new terrain and track layouts, but instead they’re simply mixed in with the pre-existing courses with the opening race of the Season actually putting you across Mantis Burn Racing’s dusty cliffs. You will come across them throughout the different events though, so it’s not as if you won’t get the chance to check out the snowy landscapes with your fancy new hover vehicles. The ‘Snowbound’ DLC brings along two extra Veteran Seasons too, so you’ll get to try out the new courses there. They aren’t unlocked from the get go though, instead demanding progression from the player in order to play through.

The four new ‘Snowbound’ courses offer more of the same from a design perspective, with topsy-turvy tracks that’ll push your racing skills to the limit. Thanks to the ice and snow they’re slippery too, really putting your drifting skills to the test along those tricky corners. Staying consistent with the rest of the game, the environments of the new tracks look great – you’ve got glistening snow covering everything around you, whilst there’s a constant blizzard that adds to the wintery vibe of the courses. I’ve mentioned that I’d liked to have seen a bit more variety in Mantis Burn Racing’s course aesthetics in the past, so these new additions go a long way in adding a bit more diversity to the game. Plus, I love Winter, so the new theme of these courses gets a thumbs up from me.

Mantis Burn Racing

It’s probably worth mentioning that Mantis Burn Racing’s long loading times haven’t been fixed, with a fairly lengthy intermission between selecting a race and it actually taking place. If you’re still playing the game since release it’s something you would’ve gotten used to by now anyway, but those who are returning exclusively for the DLC will have a gentle reminder of the long wait times. I don’t know if these will ever be fixed though, so it’s something fans of the racer just have to live with.

You can grab the Elite Class DLC for just £1.99, whilst the new ‘Snowbound’ tracks are free. I was actually a little surprised that VooFoo made the tracks free – especially since they’re typically the main attraction in a racer like this. It’s a good move though and one that won’t alienate the community that the game has established, with online multiplayer never limited for players who haven’t forked out the cash for any DLC. That being said, the premium DLC is a bargain, especially since you get a whole new vehicle class, a new career mode Season based around it, as well as what feels like a completely different way to play the game.

Should you buy it

YES.

The ‘Elite Class’ DLC doesn’t only add new vehicles and events to Mantis Burn Racing, but it makes the game feel different to play too. Don’t get me wrong, the core racing mechanics remain the same, but you’ll actually FEEL like you’re driving these futuristic hover vehicles. Whilst they’re certainly not perfect thanks to the fact that the game’s track design doesn’t always compliment their high speeds and tricky handling, they never stop being a lot of fun to drive.

Add to that the fact that it’s only £1.99 and you can’t go wrong. It’s a great price for content that extends your experience with the game with new events and a whole new way to play. Oh, and the ‘Snowbound’ content is free, so that’s a no-brainer – when played together with Mantis Burn Racing’s ‘Elite Class’ vehicles you’re guaranteed to have a good time.

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