AiRace Speed is on a collision course with the Nintendo 3DS, primed to offer lightening-fast aerial racing through futuristic environments overflowing with obstacles to skillfully dart around.
Aside from having a problematic name (Is it “Air Race” or “Air Ace?” The world may never know), AiRace Speed looks to be geared at utilizing the 3DS' most distinguishing features: The 3D. Based on the early screenshots made available by indie developers QubicGames, it looks like the game's courses will be full of tight corridors, cris-crossing pipes and the like. Fairly standard for a racing game but, once you throw in the added depth of 3D, it could have a pretty neat effect.
While no official release date has been announced just yet, QubicGames promises that AiRace will arrive on the 3DS later this summer through the eShop, going for $4.99.
AiRace Speed is actually the fourth game in an ongoing series, once again putting players in the seat of an elite pilot tasked with dipping and bobbing their way through futuristic courses. According to QubicGames CEO Jakub Pieczykolan, the developers have pulled out all the stops in this latest iteration in order to make Speed the best in the series.
“with fast and furious, meticulous level design and impressively real-feeling 3D effects, AiRace Speed combines smooth controls and tricky level design to ensure an adrenaline-soaked experience for all players of all skills and ages,” Pieczykolan said. “Online leaderboards and special achievements make AiRace Speed one of the most complete packages to be available through the Nintendo eShop.”
Let's face it: The 3DS isn't exactly drowning in racing games. The gold standard is Mario Kart 7, of course, but you won't be picking that one up for five bucks anytime soon. There are a handful of indie racers available on the eShop, but that's about it.
Kind of a bummer, considering how well suited to portable play racing games are. You can get in, get in a race or two and get out without needing to commit to a long play session. Conversely, you can also dig in for hours, taking on course after course to while away an afternoon.
AiRace Speed comes with a full suite of features, including 18 tracks to dart through featuring “stunning environments packed with challenging obstacles, tunnels, shortcuts and more,” according to a statement from the developers.
At your fingertips will be an assortment of five jets to control as you race for the finish line on a quest for a top spot on the included leaderboards.
Since Nintendo isn't exactly flooding the Virtual Arcade with previous classics, it's nice to see continued support from the indie community, giving something tasty to gnaw on from time to time. Look for AiRace Speed sometime this summer which, according to my calendar and the impending fall season, means it should be out really, really soon.