SMITE Apollo's Racer Rumble Review
Many mmo gamers grew up spending countless hours playing Mario Kart. The colorful racing antics of Mario and his assorted Nintendo brethren has to rank as one of the best games ever due to its sheer simplicity and outstanding fun. Normally, one would not associate SMITE, the moba of battling gods, with the charming whimsy of Mario Kart, but the game's recent Apollo's Racer Rumble event has done just that. This latest of the game's Adventures mode takes the powerful gods of antiquity and squeezes them into tiny racing cars for our amusement. Is this new game mode all we hope it can be? Find out as we indulge our inner Mario in our SMITE Apollo's Racer Rumble review.
Let me begin our SMITE Apollo's Racer Rumble review by stating that I do not normally play this free mmo. I tend to stay away from moba games as I have the reflexes of a three-toed sloth and have no desire to be told by people decades younger than me how much I totally suck at the game. However, the prospect of some crazy racing action that features powerful gods was too much to pass up. I had to download the game (which you can play for free here) just to try my hand at Apollo's Racer Rumble.
Players access this event via the Adventures tab on their main screen. From there, they can join a queue to start a race. The wait times to take part in the SMITE Apollo's Racer Rumble event were not too bad and usually clocked in at about thirty seconds. Once the player has accepted his invitation, it's off to select a god to be your racer. Overall, there are ten gods that players can pick from in the Apollo's Racer Rumble. Each god has their own custom driving animations, so I tried to pick a different one each time I raced. Once all the players have selected their gods, it's off to the race!
Let's turn our SMITE Apollo's Racer Rumble review to the nuts and bolts of the event. Players will race on one of two different tracks, Elysium Beach or Molten Pass, and the track selection is random. Each race is comprised of eight players, each of whom have their chosen god stuffed into a tiny, adorable racing car. A race is comprised of four laps, and the tracks do feature some items that will impact the players. There are obstacles that will slow down the players, speed pads that provide a speed boost, and power-ups that players can pick up and use. The basic mechanics of the SMITE Apollo's Racer Rumble event are really simple: the player uses the keyboard to turn left or right, accelerate, or go in reverse. The spacebar is used to drift around corners to gain speeds. The right mouse button activates the car's horn and the left mouse button is used to fire the weapon the player picked up. I really love how simple the controls are in this event as it allows the player to focus on racing and just having fun.
So how does the SMITE Apollo's Racer Rumble event play? To be honest, this event is incredibly fun. It really takes me back to my Mario Kart-playing days (sadly, my nephews and nieces usually beat me). Everything about this event pays homage to the glorious goodness of the original Nintendo game. The visuals are bright, colorful and just plain happy. The music is a definite throwback to those old console games and just puts a smile on my face. The racing action is top-notch as you'll be working hard to outrace your opponents and sabotage them if they get ahead of you. The power ups that can be picked up are straight from the old game, albeit it with different names. Koopa shells are now kappa shells. There are a good number of items that can be picked up, from barriers that players can drop to lightning that spins out all your enemies ahead of you. I found myself getting cursed a lot by other racers, in which my vision is blocked for a short time. My favorite item was nitrous, which gives a good speed boost for a long time.
While there are a lot of positives, there can be some negatives for the SMITE Apollo's Racer Rumble event, and these negatives are strictly other players. When the players are selecting a god to use as their racer, the last person can be a jerk and make the others wait for over a minute if he gets mad and hates being stuck with a god that he or she does not like. This immature behavior can get the entire race off to a bad start. The other negative is that the race does not finish until all the racers finish. This is not normally a problem, but if a player gets mad, he can go real slow and make the other players wait until he crosses the finish line. Such incidents were extremely rare, but they can crop up.
My final verdict in this SMITE Apollo's Racer Rumble review is a definite thumbs-up. Overall, I think that the mmorpg hit it out of the ballpark with this event, even with the minor issues that can crop up with idiotic players. The action is fast and fun, and there is a lot of back and forth that happens in each race. The power up that the player picks up is clearly displayed so you can instantly know what it is. While I never won a race, I didn't mind as playing Apollo's Racer Rumble is fun as hell. The races only take a little over three minutes to complete, so you can run a good number of races in an half-hour. The difference between first place and last place is usually only about ten seconds, so there's always a chance for you to grab the checkered flag. One note about this SMITE Apollo's Racer Rumble review - I did not purchase the Racer Adventure Bundle, which costs 900 gems. The bundle comes with a Winner's Circle Apollo skin, a gold key, Racer Ward, music theme, and Racer Pedestal. Players who purchase the bundle will earn points in every race that will unlock rewards, such as chests and the pedestal upgrading to become more awesome. The final reward is an Awesome Chest that is guaranteed to provide an exclusive skin. If you play SMITE on a regular basis and enjoy the Apollo's Racer Rumble event, it might behoove you to pick up the bundle. Either way, this is a great event that any player should enjoy. I highly recommend giving it a whirl as it's only around for a few more weeks.