After hitting the Oculus Rift back in 2016 and releasing on consoles in-between, BlazeRushis now making its debut on the Meta Quest 2 in the form of BlazeRush: Star Track. It brings with it some new additions that returning players are sure to appreciate too, with this fresh iteration of the game not only featuring new types of vehicles and weapons to use, but also a single player campaign made up of a variety of missions.
Is it actually any good to play though? I think so, even if it does lack the pizazz to make it stand out as a must-own release on the Meta Quest 2.
Check out some screenshots down below:
If you’ve played a top-down racer before, you’ll feel right at home with BlazeRush: Star Track. Players will speed through a variety of frantic courses made up of twists and turns, all whilst jostling with rival racers and trying to take out any that get in your way with some wild weapons… think of a blend of Micro Machines and Mario Kart and you’ll have the right idea. It’s one of those games that’s easy for just about ANYONE to pick up and play, with the right stick controlling movement, one button giving a nitrous boost when charged, and the other blasting any weapon you have equipped at foes. Simple.
It’s a lot of fun to play, especially with the variety of vehicles on offer that each feel different to use. Each vehicle is tied to a specific character, with twenty eclectic racers to choose between in total that each bring with them varied stats (split between Mass, Acceleration, and Handleability), so it’s easy to find a favourite and stick to them. Do you go for the stats that suit you? Or do you go for what looks the coolest? There’s plenty of anarchic designs when it comes to BlazeRush: Star Track’s vehicles, with their look certainly befitting of the wild nature of the racing. One of my favourites so far has been Natasha and her spaceship which has incredible acceleration which suits my style of play, though I’ve also loved the idea of playing as a drivable football helmet with Matthew Hell… there’s even one racer who drives what looks like a flying VR headset, so yeah, it’s certainly on the wacky side when it comes to its vehicles.
The tracks are fun to race across, though some can feel a little by the numbers with their design. There’s rarely anything too spectacular to encounter, whilst the somewhat simplistic environment designs mean they’re not really full of magnificent details or landmarks. It’s a shame that more wasn’t done to make them feel immersive or destructive, especially since looking down on the tracks in virtual reality feels great, with each just feeling a bit ordinary in the end. They’re not bad at all, but instead just lack those stand out features to make them feel special. There were a few occasions where the camera angles on the tracks could make it hard to keep up with the action too, though fortunately these instances were few and far between.
“Players will speed through a variety of frantic courses made up of twists and turns, all whilst jostling with rival racers and trying to take out any that get in your way with some wild weapons… think of a blend of Micro Machines and Mario Kart and you’ll have the right idea.”
That being said, there are some races where you’ll be chased down by some hulking vehicle that destroys anything in its path, which does add a fair bit of excitement to the racing. It shows that despite having some fairly ordinary track design, BlazeRush: Star Track does do things out of the norm with them. And hey, I was a big fan of the titular Star Track that makes its debut here too, with ANY racecourse set in space sure to tick plenty of the right boxes for me.
With its meaty campaign that challenges players to complete a variety of objectives across tracks as well as the different characters to race as and weapons to use, there’s plenty on offer in BlazeRush: Star Track’s single player to keep players busy for a few hours. However, it’s in the multiplayer where it really shines, with both local play for four players and online play for eight players available. I’ve had a few races online with friends and it’s been a lot of fun, with the frantic nature of the racing as well as the multitude of weaponry making for some really enjoyable showdowns. Unfortunately, when I tried to play online without friends, I struggled to find other players – I don’t know if it was just bad timing on my part or if I just got a bit unlucky, but it does feel like the community is lacking right now. It’s a shame because there’s a lot of potential for the multiplayer to be really addictive IF players stick around to play.
One awkward issue that I did notice when playing with friends was that it could be hard to recover in races. There were a few moments where one of us would end up behind the pack after a bad crash or after being taken out with a weapon, but there was little opportunity to pull it back and catch up with first place. Whilst this is something you’d expect in real-life racing, it could be frustrating here and made the result of some races a foregone conclusion after just one lap. Titles like Mario Kart make up for this with extra power ups to give racers who are trailing behind a fighting chance and I do think BlazeRush: Star Track would benefit from something similar, if only to keep multiplayer races competitive.
BlazeRush: Star Track Review
BlazeRush: Star Track is one of those fun little racers that’s manic, full of personality, and easy to pick up and play. I had a good time playing through its campaign and competing with friends online, whilst playing around with the different characters and seeing the wacky vehicle designs was always cool.
It does have its flaws though, with some uninspired track design and lack of online community the biggest issues right now. It was easy for some races to get a little predictable too, especially in multiplayer where one wrong move could wipe you out of the race completely.
Despite this, BlazeRush: Star Track still does enough right to make it worth checking out on the Meta Quest 2. It has its imperfections, but when everything clicks, it offers some great racing action that’s sure to keep players hooked in.
Developer: Targem Games
Publisher: Gaijin Entertainment
Platform(s): Meta Quest 2 (Reviewed)