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Chocobo GP review: the racing game you don’t expect

Let’s find out together the crazy and reckless races in the Final Fantasy universe, in this Chocobo GP review

If you are part of that circle of more experienced fans, chances are you will remember a certain one Chocobo Racing, originally released in 1999 for the first PlayStation. Our recent special retrogaming is also dedicated to this title, if you missed it you can find it at this link. Officially announced during Nintendo Direct last September, Chocobo GP, which we are about to talk to you about in this review, is the unexpected sequel to that distant titlewhich came after 23 years as an exclusive Nintendo Switch.

Not only Kart …

As we will see more in the course of this review, Chocobo GP aims to be for Final Fantasy what Mario Kart is for the Super Mario series, or Crash Team Racing for Crash Bandicoot. We are therefore faced with a reckless racing game, in which we will be called to compete on crazy and colorful circuits, aboard the most unlikely vehicles equipped with wheels. We will have quite a few characters at our disposal, taken from the popular Square Enix saga, with whom we can try our hand at no holds barred races, either alone or with other players on the same console, or even online.

Chocobo GP review: the racing game you don't expect

Magilite shots – Chocobo GP review

In the introduction of this review we compared Chocobo GP to Mario Kart. In fact, anyone who has tried any of the chapters of the spin-off saga dedicated to the mustachioed plumber will feel at ease here too, thanks to a series of mechanics clearly inspired by the Nintendo racing game. An eloquent example is the presence of the inevitable skid. Pressing the right dorsal during a curve we will make a small jump, and subsequently some Derapascintille will appear under the wheels of our vehicle, which will change color according to how long we maintain the drift. The longer we manage to do this, the greater the bonus acceleration (turbo boost) that we will get at the moment of releasing the button. Does it remind you of anything?

There is also no shortage of famous objects with which to attack opponents. Sown along the paths, in fact, we will find some Magilite, in the form of eggs with the inevitable “?” printed above. Collecting them we will get powers, such as spherical shields, fireballs, portals capable of teleporting us forward or backward in the path, and so on and so forth. We will be able to keep up to three different spellsand collecting one equal to the one already owned, it it will become even more powerful (almost every spell has three levels of power). Finally, along the paths we will also find gods Crystalsand once we have collected 10 we will be able to benefit from a boost to speedbut above all we will be able to activate the unique ability of our characterusually much more powerful than the common Magilite.

Chocobo GP review: the racing game you don't expect

A Grand Prix for True Heroes – Chocobo GP Review

As already mentioned earlier in this review, in Chocobo GP we will be able to choose to compete as some of the most well-known faces of the Final Fantasy saga. However, it will not be possible to do this right away, as these characters will be unlocked. The main method to do this will be to deal with the story, which will also introduce us to the simple mechanics of the game, with a short (but all too exhaustive) initial tutorial. Among the various competitions that make up the chapters of the story, we will see funny interlude skits entirely dubbed (in English), with funny characters who will tell an unpretentious plot but that will certainly please the little ones.

There will then be several other modes, such as Custom Races, the classic Race Against Time (in which we will have to complete the tracks in the shortest possible time, challenging our own ghosts or other players’ ghosts) and the Series Races mode, in which we will compete on four different paths in sequence trying to place ourselves as best as possible in the ranking.

The latter seems to be the counterpart of the various Grand Prix present in Mario Kart, but it appears to have a little less charm than the latter, especially due to the low number of tracks. The scarcity of tracks available (nine in all) represents one of the biggest weaknesses of the title. Although these are available in two versions (one short and one more complex), after a few games you start to feel the lack of a little more variety. A pity, especially since the tracks present are undoubtedly well designed.

Chocobo GP review: the racing game you don't expect

The competition widens – Chocobo GP review

If the younger ones are in all likelihood conquered by the story mode, the most competitive players could find their match in the online sector of the game. The latter is not very varied and includes only two modes: the classic possibility of competing online or locally with friends (already mentioned a few paragraphs above in this review) and the homonymous Chocobo GP, which represents the true flower of the game. eyelet of the entire multiplayer sector.

In this mode we will be able to dive into competitions of 64 players, who will battle in various races in a four-phase elimination tournament. At each stage the competitors will be halved, going from 32 to 16 and finally to only 8 challengers in the last race that will decide the overall winner. In our test we also had the opportunity to test the robustness of the game servers, and we confirm that this is currently one of the most valid modes of the entire package. Perhaps a few more modes could have satisfied the palates of a wider slice of players, but we do not rule out the possibility that Square Enix may expand the game in the future with DLC.

Chocobo GP review: the racing game you don't expect

The roar of the engines – Chocobo GP Review

From a technical point of view, Square Enix’s racing game defends itself more than admirably. The tracks are colorful and full of life, the characters funny and funny as you would expect from a title of this type. The music also deserves praise, with nice tunes (you will struggle to get rid of the game menu theme) and energetic songs that perfectly accompany the chaotic on-screen action. A series of jingles and quotes to the most iconic musical themes of the series complete the circle, which will surely delight the most avid Final Fantasy fans.

Even under the gameplay side, the title performed very well, without ever a hiccup or a drop in frame rate, even in the most agitated situations. While almost every detail shows the clear intent to follow in the footsteps of the Mario Kart series, the experience as a whole proved to be really well packaged and with a character of its own. The gameplay peaks of the Nintendo racing game do not (predictably) touch, however Chocobo GP manages to partially capture the spirit, giving a few hours of pleasant fun. In case you were wondering, yes, even here a fireball launched with the Magilite Ignis can ruin friendships as much as a red shell!

Chocobo GP review: the racing game you don't expect

To the starting places!

If you’re a fan of the Final Fantasy series, this Chocobo GP is probably the racing game you don’t expect, but need, as we’ve seen in this review. The Square Enix title does not predictably reach the excellence of the sacred monsters of the genre (such as the Mario Kart series), but it is strongly inspired by it, while simplifying some mechanics. Net of a little variety in the tracks, the game manages to keep an identity of its ownoffering an experience that can entertain adults and (above all) children, thanks also to a well-kept technical departmentcheerful and carefree.

And what do you think of this title? Are you already warming up your engines for the next race? Let us know in the comments and stay tuned to for all the news dedicated to the world of video games. To buy video games at a discounted price, we recommend that you take a look at the Instant Gaming catalog.

He will be able to make himself loved not only by fans of the series

Points in favor

  • Well designed routes …
  • Very fun 64 player online mode …
  • Fun gameplay with its own character
  • Technical and sound sector very well done

Points against

  • … but a few more wouldn’t have hurt
  • … but beyond that there is little else left to do online