Hot Wheels Unleashed 2: Turbocharged Review - 2 Hot 2 Wheels
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Hot Wheels Unleashed 2: Turbocharged Review - 2 Hot 2 Wheels

On its face, Hot Wheels Unleashed 2: Turbocharged is a continuation of the original game that doesn't offer many drastic changes or additions. Underneath the surface, however, there are a ton of small improvements in both the gameplay and the content that make for a better experience overall.

The main campaign of Hot Wheels Unleashed 2: Turbocharged is a collection of racing events connected via an overworld map. This time around, these events are loosely tied together by a story about massive monsters invading the city. The two main heroes must shrink these monsters down and beat them by driving Hot Wheels. The story is told through short cutscenes that feature stills of the cartoon protagonists and a Saturday-morning-cartoon-style tone. It's not particularly great--the dialogue is over the top and the jokes don't land--but these cutscenes are pretty infrequent and short, so it's a small part of the experience.

The racing itself is easily the most enjoyable part of the game, with major improvements to the feel. Each Hot Wheels vehicle is now given a class, like drifter, off-road, or rocket, which gives you a rough idea of how the vehicle controls. Drifters specialize in drifting, naturally, while rockets have the highest available speed, but lack in control. With some classes, like the Off-Road, you can tell their specialty just by looking at the vehicle; it's nice to know at a glance what a standard looking car is good at without having to find out by racing. Each racing event is labeled with the class best suited for the track, giving you an idea of the best vehicle to pick without needing to run a practice lap first. For the most part, you aren't forced to use the recommended vehicle class, so you can always pick your favorite Hot Wheel, regardless of the situation, which is a nice touch.

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