Available now for Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3, via the Xbox LIVE Arcade and PlayStation Network respectively, Wrecked: Revenge Revisited is presented as the spiritual successor to Mashed, the hit cult racing videogame originally launched on PlayStation 2 and Xbox back in 2004. A product made for a widespread audience on an aging console; Mashed was revered for its chaotic multiplayer mode. Wrecked: Revenge Revisited mirrors that position in the market, but while it may seem like a good idea on paper the end result is somewhat disappointing.
The single-player mode isn’t a campaign as such, but rather a series of different challenges. There are four types of challenge set across six stages, and players must complete a challenge to unlock adjacent challenges, working across a grid from top left to bottom right. Speed, Weapons, Skill and Elite are the flavours of each challenge series, and it’s undeniably the second of which that is the most enjoyable.
Speed challenges are essentially basic races, Skill challenges see you engaging in various track-based objectives and Elite challenges are, unsurprisingly of a higher difficulty, but it’s the Weapons challenges that provide the moist unique experience. From placing mines set areas along the tracks to avoid barrages of sustained fire, Weapon challenges will teach you how to push your chosen vehicle – and your patients – to the limit.
The multiplayer mode is that which brought Mashed such acclaim nearly a decade ago, and remains enjoyable here in Wrecked: Revenge Revisited. Playable online or simultaneously on a single system using the same screen, the multiplayer gameplay is a simple, customisable racing challenge. Wrecked: Revenge Revisited plays as you would expect: players compete to get ahead, aggressively tackling one another along the way so as to force their opponents beyond the line of the bottom of the screen and into relegation. With players of different skill levels it’s rare for races to last more than thirty seconds, but for evenly pitched challengers it can often present some tightly fought back-and-forths.
Wrecked: Revenge Revisited won’t be everyone’s cup of tea. While trying to emulate the success of the classic Micro Machines franchise, it also adds a few ideas of its own, some more successful than others. The variety of weapon types and the track design is commendable, but the way in which the camera shifts angle in accordance with the track and not the vehicle can be very disorientating at first, it’s certainly far from being as intuitive as Evolution Studios’ recently released MotorStorm RC.
Wrecked: Revenge Revisited is an enjoyable videogame, but there simply isn’t enough structure to the core experience when compared to the likes of MotorStorm RC, despite being twice the price. It’s a videogame made knowing it’s intended for bite-sized relief between others titles, and with that respect it seems to have been artificially kept low key. Gamers who took to Mashed will adopt Wrecked: Revenge Revisited with the same sense of satisfaction when challenging likeminded friends, but with so many other titles offering a similar experience that 1,200 Microsoft Point/£9.99 GBP price-tag may be a little too steep for many.