“ Manufacturer Mattel Interactive / Type: PS2 game „
*A review of Arthur! Ready to Race for the PlayStation!*
I admit I enjoyed the cartoons, at least enough to check out a title obviously aimed at young children!
For the single player mode, much of the game involves helping Arthur to build the ultimate race car. Car parts are earned by accomplishing tasks in an adventure game style manner - these tend to be against the timer - but as expected, are straightforward. For example the cemetary where Binky wants you to look for his backpack couldn't be more linear.
The racing itself does away without a button for accelerating, but there are brakes. The handling of your soap box racer however, is not pleasant because the tyres screech as you turn. There's not much to the racing - no opponents just beat the clock. In the multiplayer mode there are three tracks to race on and four racers to choose from, but the performances of these cars are the same. The disappointment of Arthur: Ready To Race is that it is not simultaneous multiplayer action, instead it is taking turns to set best time as well as collect coins and cards.
FMV sequences depicting cartoon characters in 3D are mediocre. Graphically it is not bad - the cardboard style surroundings are solid. Sadly, the theme song for the cartoon is nowhere to be found here, though Jack is here to tell you some knock-knock jokes. I gather that none of the voice-actors from the cartoon are present - the voices for the game are hit-and-miss for being soundalikes. There is a jukebox for listening to the songs obtained from collecting the CDs in the game - the music I guess being a highlight of Arthur: Ready To Race. You'll find yourself often at the loading screen but waiting times are not too long for this game.
Somehow I went as to far as see this game through. The two hours it took me to complete the game had me go through the same tasks twice! There are numerous Bionic Bunny cards to collect - for completists I guess, even if the format of the game makes it awkward. A decent enough game for young children only, as the racing is not too satisfying and the lack of simultaneous multiplayer action means it is too limited for anyone else.
In this game, Arthur and his friends want to build the best racer they can. The gameplay is quite simple and easy to learn for young children. Throughout the game, you play as Arthur and get to drive in your racer, solve problems, collect coins, and accumulate Bionic Bunny cards that you can trade for great new accessories for your racer.