We had the chance to play some of the upcoming bumper to bumper arcade racer Mantis Burn Racing at Gamescom. Currently in steam early access the game is a throwback to arcade racers of days gone by with a beautiful ultra realistic look.
The depth of the game itself comes in the diversity of vehicles and customisation available to players. Base vehicles vary into 3 different classes; speedy dune buggies, which shoot ahead of the pack but can be thrown around by the larger vehicles, strong six wheeler trucks, which can burst through barricades to unlock shortcuts, and versatile road racers which are found somewhere in between. On top of these classes the game has a deep RPG style upgrade system which allows for fine tuning of vehicles to account for the players individual driving style.
Driving in the game felt nostalgic but fresh at the same time. There hasn’t really been a game like Mantis Burn Racing for a long time and in motion the amount of cars and sand flying around the screen create something truly wonderful on screen. However all of the tracks and cars that I’ve had a look at seem to be similar – the lack of diversity, and most of all colour, is a real shame as what’s already in the game is executed beautifully.
The most exciting aspect of the game for me was the inclusion of 4 player split screen multiplayer in addition to the standard online mode. Mantis Burn Racing is one of those perfect inclusive games that anyone can pick up and play – a welcome break from the usual rota of split screen games available on the latest generation. I’m not sure about the longevity of the game – but hopefully it can fulfil a similar role to Rocket League or Towerfall as a game that I repeatedly come back to and play with friends in short bursts.