Velocity G reminds me of a flash game that I could play on an internet browser, and not a particularly good one at that. The only difference is that I have to pay money for this one.
It’s barely put together and of very poor quality, a racing game that has horrible track variety, controls that are hard to make sense of, and a difficulty level that is unbalanced. It tries to evoke “Wipeout” by being a challenging and fast paced sci-fi racer, but at the end of the day it just falls on its face in almost every way.
The minute you start playing Velocity G on Xbox One you will see that this will take some work to control; don’t be surprised if you drive straight into the sidewall when you start playing. You’ll eventually get used to the controls but they are never easy to maintain, and it’s hard to tell whether this was an intentional choice to make the handling so bad. But then, even when you get the hang out of it, it still feels that sometimes you’re just thrown off course for no reason. In fact, there have been many times where I have felt cheated by the controls of Velocity G, right before I was about to win.
What also brings it down is the shallow progression system that has been included, with most vehicles having very few, hugely simple upgrades that you can get with the money you acquire from winning races. It feels as if the upgrades never really have any impact either; I could never tell the difference between upgrades until much later in proceedings.
Perhaps this feeling comes from the fact that the AI racers of Velocity that you compete against are horribly unbalanced; it’s one thing when a game is challenging, but this often feels unfair. I was losing some of the first races in the game, but it was hard to ever tell whether it was down to a lack of skills from me, or if those in first and second were unnaturally fast. Even if I chalked it up to just being hard, it would still have been one awfully brutal difficulty curve. Some of the later levels are just as difficult as the very first ones too, and even after driving perfectly and hitting every boost there are many times when you’ll never see the top positions. See, the races you find yourself in usually see some of the AI running in much higher level cars, which means to get first place you have to go back and repeat with the cars you unlock on later stages. This creates an artificial replayability that’s really aggravating and seems to be that difficult just to extend the playtime, forcing it upon you and becoming unnecessary.
What also adds to the frustration have been the constant crashes I have experienced while playing. Very often, for seemingly no reason, the menus would simply stop working, forcing a restart of the game in order to be able to play it.
It’s difficult to want to play Velocity G for any extended period of time either, because the tracks are terribly generic and similar. Of the few available, all of them just end up as simple tubes with occasionally different obstacles. None feel unique or memorable, and this means your time with Velocity G will end up just feeling like you are racing on the same track, albeit with different color schemes. Without a word of a lie, it genuinely felt like I was doing the same race over and over again the entire time.
That same sentiment goes for the vehicles too. Velocity G lets you unlock several throughout however they all feel like the exact same poorly controlled space-themed car. You can change the color if you so please, but that’s about all you can do to truly customize your experience.
Further to this, the modes are pretty run of the mill for a racer – regular lap races, races where you go through flags, some drag races (a straight line with boosts), and sprints which take place over a single lap. You can partake in all of these in both single player and multiplayer, but that’s your lot and whilst Velocity G does not have a huge variety of content, it feels like even less because of all the tracks that feel exactly the same.
One thing that Velocity G does have going for it is found in the visuals, as the cool neon pastel look never gets old. All the cars look great and I never got tired of looking at the environments – in fact it’s probably the best part of the whole experience. There’s a clear vision for the visual direction and it really works. The music however is a simple techno beat that almost never changes and it is this which is really droning and incredibly annoying. Indeed most of the sounds seem out of place and the announcer in the race sounds like an off brand GPS voice.
Velocity G is a racer with very few things going for it. It’s plain, generic, boring, and, for much of the time, frustrating. It is a chore to play and I found myself dreading wanting to continue with it. Unless you are just curious about how to avoid making a bad racing game, I would never suggest getting this, and even though Velocity G on Xbox One costs the price of a frappuccino, you would probably get more enjoyment out of that drink than you would playing this.