Aquiris Game Studio Arcade arcade racer Horizon Chase 2 Racing

Horizon Chase 2 Review (PS5) – The Race Of A Lifetime

Horizon Chase 2 PS5 Review. Developed by Aquiris Game Studio, Horizon Chase 2 takes the form of an arcade racer and is the follow-up to Horizon Chase: Turbo, a 90s-inspired racer that, while not exactly setting the world on fire, I remember very fondly.

I was very excited to jump in and see what the developers brought onto the track for the sequel, so come along with me, and let’s see what is new with Horizon Chase 2.

Horizon Chase 2 Review (PS5) – The Race of a Lifetime

When starting up Horizon Chase 2, it immediately felt familiar to me, as someone who has played the first game fairly often over the past five years that I’ve owned it. Each of the original game’s modes have returned for the sequel, with World Tour mode being the main campaign, taking players through different tracks in each of the countries that are featured in the game.

We also have the online multiplayer mode, which features a battlepass-like system, where reaching different goals in a season will allow you to get more cosmetic items, such as paints, tires, and body styles. It also features a daily login bonus, which is a nice little bump for the players who will be playing this game often anyway.

Finally, we have the Tournaments mode. This mode has three parts which are unlocked by reaching certain areas in the World Tour mode. Tournaments themselves are groups of four races done back-to-back in a cup-style competition. This selection is on par with the different modes found in the original, not including any of the DLC that came later on in the game’s life.

Looking Fine for Miles

One big change made from the first game is the art style. Gone are the polygonal assets, static backgrounds, and roadside features that looked like jpegs that were sized up as you raced up the track.

Every aspect of the visuals looks to be completely overhauled, which came as a very welcome surprise. Despite all of the changes, the vibrant 90s feel still shines through in each of the tracks thanks to the brilliant art direction taken by the team. Indeed, the game oozes the 90s nostalgia style from the main menu all the way through every aspect of the gameplay. It feels like playing a remastered version of some of the best racers the PS1 had to offer.

Horizon Chase 2 takes players through seaside cities, deserts, forests, and everything in between. Each location feels unique and looks fantastic to drive through, even on the tenth time through the course.

The visuals aren’t the only thing to get an upgrade, as there’s also more tracks and vehicles available for players to use. The customization options, while limited when compared to bigger games, go a long way to make me feel like my car is my own.

Each vehicle has multiple body styles, paint styles, and tires to choose from the make the car feel unique, and after changing the paint and body style from the default on my cars, I did not see another one that matched mine on the tracks.

Shifting into Overdrive

Playing Horizon Chase 2 is an absolute blast. The racing feels fast, frenetic, and fun from start to finish, and the ability to jump into races quickly ensures that players are able to keep the fast-paced fun alive for hours at a time.

It can be played online with friends or with up to four players on local split-screen play. This feels like an experience that was made to be played with friends, and as such, every race in every game mode can be played with a friend.

The biggest difference in Horizon Chase 2 from its predecessor is that players are no longer required to pick up gas as they go along the tracks to keep from running out. While the gas pickups have been removed, the nitros and coins are still present, giving players something to look out for while on the tracks.

The tracks are shaken up a little bit when playing the time trial modes as well. In this mode, you are given pickups which give you a second back on the clock each. This, coupled with the occasional boost pad on the tracks, makes for a nail-biting race at breakneck speeds.

Players should still exercise caution because hitting an obstacle or another car at over 200 miles per hour can knock them back a few places in the race before they even know what happened.

Unfortunately, I did run into two instances where my game crashed as I completed a race in split screen, but it saved my progress after the races, and due to the ability to get into a race quickly, it did little to hamper the experience.

Horizon Chase 2 is a true treat for arcade racer fans, as it follows up on everything that the original did so well and brings it up another level. It outclasses its predecessor in every way, making it feel obsolete immediately after playing Horizon Chase 2.

Horizon Chase 2 is out now for PS5, PS4, PC, Nintendo Switch, Xbox One and Xbox Series X/S.

Review code kindly provided by publisher.

Score

9

The Final Word

Horizon Chase 2 is a phenomenal package for arcade racing game fans. It makes great improvements over the original game, both in visuals and in gameplay. This feels like the definitive arcade racing experience for anyone that is interested in chasing high scores, playing a game with friends, or just enjoying a race or two to unwind. This is easily a game that I would recommend to anyone who enjoys the genre.