Judge me however you like, but I love Beach Buggy Racing 2: Island Adventure. Admittedly not quite enough to allow it to trouble the 2021 leaders which will be challenging for Game of the Year honours, but as a way of escaping the stresses of life when you need some frantic fun in your life, with a game that will happily let you jump in and out at will, it really does do the job.
It was the base game which provided the initial opportunity for fans of arcade kart racing the chance to get involved in what Beach Buggy Racing 2 had to offer, but now Vector Unit have built on the bulging content offering with a rather delightful Hot Wheels-themed booster expansion. Whilst it may not do enough to ensure that Beach Buggy Racing 2 will be able to drag in a ton of newbies, if you’ve already got access to the standard game, this is well worth a look.
The Beach Buggy Racing 2: Island Adventure Hot Wheels Edition and Booster Pack (mouthful of a name aside!) takes everything that was already good with the original karting adventure and throws in some iconic Hot Wheels fun for good measure. It comes complete with new Hot Wheels cars, additional racetracks, more events and further challenges. And the way Vector Unit have integrated it into proceedings should well be applauded.
For £8.39 (or £22.49 for the base game and DLC as one), you’ll find yourself treated to some of the finest Hot Wheels action this side of the Rocket League Hot Wheels Triple Threat content, the Hot Wheels Legends expansion that was once added to Forza Horizon 4 and, well, the release of the official Hot Wheels Unleashed racer which is arriving in the coming months.
You see, this add-on drops in no less than seven of the most iconic Hot Wheels motors into play here – all with the usual varying stats that accompany any Beach Buggy Racing 2 vehicle. That means the likes of Rip Rod, Surf ‘N Turf, Bone Shaker, Twin Mill III, Donut Drifter, Hotweiler and Loco Punk are all present and playable – and for anyone who knows their Hot Wheels stuff, they’ll know those names are a pretty big deal.
You will however have to unlock these machines if you wish to use them in the Adventure mode, with most locked behind newly added multi-event championships. For the most part working your way through the Adventure map, earning the usual stars in the process by winning races, will enable full access, with Vector Unit creating new pathways from the already existing layouts. These championships – once won – will give access to the cars you are looking for.
But they will also give access to the new tracks that come bundled in with this Hot Wheels expansion, with Volcano Blast, Hot Wheels Harbor, Looptastic and Frostfire Vale integrating the iconic orange and blue track pieces that the Hot Wheels name has long embraced. These tracks are pretty decent too, bringing in loop-de-loops, more jumps than you could wish for, speed boosts and more, all along with the usual Beach Buggy Racing 2 power-ups and madness. Granted, the base game of Beach Buggy Racing 2 already felt very much like a Hot Wheels plaything just without the name, but that means these new circuits fit in nicely with the madcap theme of the game.
It’s the Adventure which will play host to much of your time with Beach Buggy Racing 2 and indeed the Hot Wheels addition, but each of the tracks are also found building out a new Hot Wheels 4-event Championship across all HP speed settings, in the standard one-off Race mode, and even thrown into the Tournaments section too.
When you include the fact that this Beach Buggy Racing 2: Island Adventure Hot Wheels expansion also adds additional Xbox achievements and Gamerscore to pick up too, it’s a very much appreciated option to have. That is no more true than because the base game was – and still is – a bit stingey on giving out easy Gamerscore. Granted, you won’t be hearing the ping of these new additions any time soon – especially not without a bit of a grind and some serious exploring off the beaten track for the collectible Medallions that signify a Hot Wheels Stunt Challenge on each track – but at least they are something good to work towards.
You’re certainly not going to be finding any game changing moments with the addition of the Hot Wheels expansion in Beach Buggy Racing 2, but honestly, the game doesn’t need that. What is here though is well-integrated and gives further reason to spend time racing through the adventures at hand – all with some iconic cars and tracks in tow. In fact, the inclusion of this add-on just seems to fit the overall vibe of the game really well.
For the relatively low asking price, if you have a copy of Beach Buggy Racing 2: Island Adventure already to hand, you’d not go wrong by expanding your options with a little purchase of the Hot Wheels Booster Pack. You could most definitely do worse with your eight quid. And if you don’t have a copy of the game, it’s the Hot Wheels Edition for £22.49 that should be your calling.
Hit the loops of the Beach Buggy Racing 2 Hot Wheels Edition or Booster Pack at the Xbox Store