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Hot Wheels Unleashed mini-review

The amazing race
by rawmeatcowboy
01 October 2021
GN Version 5.0


See if ##hotwheels Unleashed on ##Nintendo ##Switch is worth your time! ##nintendoswitch ##racing ##mattel ##toys ##cars ##review ##BillboardNXT ##videogames

♬ dance(256762) - TimTaj

While work on the GoNintendo revamp continues, I'm still toiling away on some projects over on Tiktok. Most recently, I put together a video review for Hot Wheels Unleashed, which turned out to be a much, MUCH better game than I expected! You can watch that review above, or read the script of the review below.

As for the GoNintendo revamp, things are going extremely well! Lots of exciting stuff happening, including a very productive meeting yesterday. We're definitely at the point where things are really coming together. Hopefully in the not-too-distant future, I'll have a thing or two to actually show you, instead of just hint at!

Lastly, posts over at the GoNintendo Patreon continue. Most recently, we've had some fun discussion about the Mario animated movie, Metroid Dread, the Switch OLED Model, and more. There's also some personal tidbits in there as well. Thanks to all who support us over there!

As always, I'll keep you updated on big advances on GoNintendo's revamp. Rest assured, a lot is happening behind the scenes! It's a very exciting time, and I can't wait to be back to regular work. Until next time, gang!


There’s no shortage of racing games on the Switch. The eShop is chock full of titles in the genre, including arcade-style, kart, simulation, and more. There’s plenty of decent racers to find, but it takes something a bit more to stand out. The Hot Wheels brand certainly attracts some attention, as it's been a high-profile toy brand for over 5 decades now. Of course, a recognizable name doesn’t instantly mean a game will be good. Thankfully, in the case of Hot Wheels Unleashed, the game itself is very much worthy of the iconic name.

Most of us played with Hot Wheels cars both in and out of the house back in the day, and Hot Wheels Unleashed aims to recapture that same spirit. Race tracks are set up in everyday locations, such as bedrooms, back alleys, construction sites, and so on. The tracks themselves are built using all the classic Hot Wheels accessories you know and love. Corkscrew towers, giant loops, and miles upon miles of bright orange track are woven throughout these locations, with races taking you from the bottom of basement steps all the way up ceiling lights. Hot Wheels Unleashed’s tracks are the ones we would have built as kids if our parents weren’t so busy parenting!

Just like the tracks themselves, Hot Wheels Unleashed is packed with a litany of nostalgic cars. With a collection of 66 cars to unlock from day one, chances are you’ll see a handful of classics that are instantly recognizable. Even some of the licensed properties have made the cut, including the Batmobile, Knight Rider’s, K.I.T.T., the Ninja Turtle party wagon, and many others. The combination of all these infamous cars racing alongside each other only helps to make the racing experience that much more enjoyable.

As for the racing, while it’s pretty straightforward, it’s unbelievably enjoyable. There’s no weapons to throw out at your opponents here. Your placement in a race is based on driving skill and boosting. You slowly build boost as you drive, but you can gain it much faster by drifting. Drifting is absolutely key in Hot Wheels Unleashed, as there are a ton of extreme turns to make. You’ll spend a decent amount of your time drifting around the track, and it feels absolutely fantastic. The sheer sense of speed, your car whipping around the track, and 11 other racers jockeying for position the entire time makes for a race environment much more intense than you might expect!

The pure fun of racing makes up for the lack of variety in your objectives. Single player has you working your way through a map littered with standard races, boss races, and time attacks. Standard and boss races are pretty much the same thing, just with difficulty dialed up. Time Attack is self explanatory, but the times set for each track are quite challenging. Completing the various race objectives earns you customization options, gears to upgrade cars, blind boxes with new cars, and more. The unlocks, paired with just how different each car feels and the overall challenge of races should keep you more than busy.

There’s also other reasons to keep coming back, such as local and online multiplayer, a track editor, room customization, and some other superfluous bits. All in all, Hot Wheels Unleashed is a real treat, thanks to thoughtful track creation, adrenaline-filled racing, and smart implementation of nostalgic elements. There’s no doubt about it. Hot Wheels Unleashed really is one of the best arcade racers in recent years.