Your Dose of Serious Fun in Hot Wheels Unleashed 2 (PS5)
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Your Dose of Serious Fun in Hot Wheels Unleashed 2 (PS5)

Hot Wheels Unleashed 2 – Turbocharged Review (PS5): Your Dose of Serious Fun

Hot Wheels has come to epitomize the concept of miniature cars that are not only collectibles but also used to engage in thrilling battles and test the limits of one’s ego on extravagant tracks featuring gravity-defying loops and larger-than-life traps.

Hot Wheels holds a special place in our hearts, evoking cherished childhood memories. With guest appearances in renowned franchises like Forza Horizon, the iconic toy cars have now ventured into their video game series. The question remains: Can Hot Wheels Unleashed 2: Turbocharged surpass the shortcomings of its predecessor and deliver the same exhilarating joy as playing with tangible toys?

The developers at Milestone appear to have grasped the core formula, realizing that refining various elements is the key to achieving the perfect recipe. Hot Wheels Unleashed 2: Turbocharged comes across as a refined iteration of the 2021 release, boasting numerous enhancements and adjustments.

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Meticulous attention to detail and a focus on quality-of-life improvements elevate this title into a formidable contender within the realm of arcade racing games. The narrative takes a backseat, serving primarily as a pretext to thrust players into the driver’s seat or to engage the youngest of players who are still enthralled by animated cartoons.

Hot Wheels Unleashed 2

The characters and the storyline feel more like a flimsy excuse, and not a particularly convincing one, for the presence of enormous octopuses on the perilous plastic racetracks. However, once you look past this background distraction, you’ll uncover a significantly improved gameplay experience that centers on the wild tracks and the ability to execute jaw-dropping jumps, spins, and side attacks to secure that coveted first place on the podium. This formula proves to be enjoyable, at least for a while, whether you’re playing solo or in multiplayer mode.

As expected, amidst the chaotic maneuvers and tracks, you’ll find a collection of matchbox-sized cars that players can acquire and take for a spin. The variety is extensive, ranging from street cars like the Ford Mustang to iconic creations such as the Boneshaker or the Street Creeper. These vehicles are categorized into different classes that emphasize traits like speed, drifting, off-roading prowess, or a balanced combination of these attributes.

Beyond the standard statistics like speed, acceleration, braking, or boost, there are also inherent differences; for instance, monster trucks excel at shoving opponents into the side barriers, while lighter vehicles have an advantage when it comes to sliding gracefully around corners. Additionally, these vehicles are categorized by rarity, spanning from common to ultra-rare.

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PS5 Hot Wheels Unleashed 2
PS5 Hot Wheels Unleashed 2 TurboCharged

The good news for those who are tired of the microtransaction trend is that all the base vehicles can be acquired using in-game currency. This means that Hot Wheels Unleashed 2: Turbocharged is refreshingly devoid of the option to purchase tiny racers with real money, despite the presence of a season pass and the availability of some unique vehicles that can be bought separately from the base game.

The races themselves are an adrenaline-fueled rollercoaster, interspersed with occasional moments of frustration until you master the art of timing jumps and controlling your car mid-air and upon landing. It’s like taking the thrill of kart racing and cranking up the speed and nitro boosts to out-of-this-world levels.

The control system is distinctly arcade-style, demanding that players quickly grasp the Hot Wheels way of drifting. Understanding how to handle corners through skillful skidding becomes the defining line between victory and defeat. It’s an easy-to-learn yet hard-to-master formula that offers immensely gratifying gameplay.

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Furthermore, you’ll encounter races that challenge you to identify the shortest paths between checkpoints with only a vague arrow pointing in the general direction. There are also exhilarating boss battles where you race against the clock while dodging the unique attacks of colossal adversaries like giant octopuses or pterodactyls. All of this unfolds in the zaniest of settings, including locales like the nature museum or the backyard.

Hot Wheels Unleashed 2: Turbocharged presents four levels of difficulty, and the disparities between them are substantial, with some challenges arising not solely from AI-driven competition. Even on the easiest settings, certain levels can prove daunting due to unclear track markers or the necessity of mastering the precise moment to jump to avoid plummeting into chasms.

Conversely, on the higher difficulty levels, where the AI’s aggressiveness presents a significant challenge, once you’ve truly mastered the game mechanics, you’ll find yourself with a distinct advantage over the competition. The visual style of the game is a vibrant and whimsical one, providing an immensely satisfying sensation that you’re not just driving virtual cars but actually playing with toys.

Hot Wheels Unleashed

The absence of pilots within the cars themselves further accentuates this feeling. The driver’s seat is perpetually empty, reminiscent of a nostalgic trip back to the early 2000s commercials that promised unabashed fun, all without needing deep pockets. It’s a delightful reminder of the pure joy that comes from Hot Wheels play.

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Hot Wheels Unleashed 2 System Requirements

Operating SystemWindows 10 64-bit or Higher
CPUIntel Core i9-9900k or equivalent / AMD Ryzen 7 2700X or equivalent
GraphicsGeForce RTX 2070 Super / Radeon RX 6800 XT
Storage30 GB


Hot Wheels Unleashed 2: Turbocharged doesn’t aim for seriousness but delivers an abundance of pure, unadulterated fun. It may have some flaws, but it’s a substantial step forward from its forerunner, offering enjoyable experiences in both single-player and couch co-op modes.

Whether you’re immersed in heart-pounding races, eagerly collecting and enhancing your cars, engaging in zany boss battles, or unleashing your creativity by crafting custom tracks, it’s a dream come true for those who missed out on Hot Wheels play during their childhood or those who wish to relive those cherished memories. This game is all about the joy of play and hits the mark.

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