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Table Top Racing: World Tour Reviewed by Cyril Lachel on . As second tries go, Table Top Racing: World Tour is a good one. It's not an essential racing game, but it does a good job of steering the franchise in the right direction. It looks great and it's hard to deny the joy of driving past old stereo equipment and wine bottles. Sadly, it's held back by the short tracks and limited selection. I would love to see this team take one more stab at the series, because they're so close to nailing the formula and creating something truly special. Rating: 64%
Table Top Racing: World Tour
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  • Review Score:

  • B-
On paper, the original Table Top Racing was incredible. It was a speedy little racing game with a fun conceit that had us controlling toy cars in a world made up of everyday household objects. It was also developed by a lot of the same people who made wipEout, one of my favorite racing franchises of all time. It seemingly had all the ingredients in place to make a modern age Micro Machines. But all the best intentions didn't add up to much, and I found Playrise Digital's first attempt was the very definition of underwhelming.

Now, a few years later and on different hardware, the team is back with another stab at the formula. They've taken all of the things that worked and tweaked the stuff that didn't to create Table Top Racing: World Tour, an exciting new racing game that goes a long way to live up to the original promise. I still hesitate to call it a must-own game, but Playrise Digital has taken a big step in the right direction.


Originally released on PlayStation 4 and PC back in 2016, Table Top Racing: World Tour is finally making the jump to the Xbox One. This version offers all the same content we saw on other platforms, with the added downloadable content built right in. While it doesn't have any new tracks or vehicles, it does make playing online a little easier, since everybody will have all the content from day one.

As the title suggests, this is an arcade-style racing game that takes place entirely on the tops of tables and other flat surfaces. You're essentially controlling a selection of small toy cars that are dwarfed by everyday objects, such as books, cans of motor oil and an assortment of breads. You'll race through a kid's bedroom, dodge plates at a sushi bar, avoiding car parts in a garage and even take a bite out of a picnic spread. Much like Micro Machines and other similar games, the fun is getting away from the typical real world locations and racing through a lot of tracks that could easily be created using the stuff you have lying around the house.

Although the focus may not be futuristic, there are a number of aspects of the game that remind me of the wipEout series. The most obvious are the weapons, which have us shooting missiles and dropping bombs to gain an advantage against over the competition. Of course, this is nothing we haven't seen in countless kart racing games, but Table Top Racing does try to evolve the genre by letting you power up these weapons and use them to open up new areas. Sadly, none of these weapons feel like they are in the spirit of the game. The missiles and oil spills could have been featured in any other game and have next to nothing to do with the theme. It would have been nice to see the cars throwing LEGOs or dropping ketchup packets, something that relates to the micro nature of the game.

Table Top Racing: World Tour (Xbox One)Click For the Full Picture Archive

Beyond that missed opportunity, Table Top Racing: World Tour is a racing game that mostly makes good on the killer concept. The levels are by far the most interesting aspect of the game, and I especially like all the recognizable objects that litter the screen. You'll also find that the stages will occasionally change, offering slight revisions that help to keep things fresh. That said, you will race through the same locations an absurd amount of times, especially if you intend to earn all 540 stars in the 180 events.

The truth is, Table Top Racing suffers from a lot of the same problems that plague most budget racing games. As hard as they try to mix things up, there's a level of repetition that's hard to ignore. You'll recognize all of the events, from the usual time trials to the pursuit races to the occasional hot lap. And with only a few locations to pull from, the whole thing will start to blur together after a while. You've even seen this structure before, and going through the same tracks with faster cars isn't as novel as it once was. It just starts to feel like filler after a while, which is the last thing I want from a racing game.

I also wish the locations were a bit more substantial. I'm not sure if this comes from its mobile phone roots or not, but I was disappointed by how short the laps are. Even in the slower cars, it won't take much more than 20 or 30 seconds to finish a lap, which feels a bit too bite-sized for a console game. The short tracks would have been a little more acceptable if they changed after each lap, but there's nothing like that here. You basically just race the same laps six or seven times, which only adds to the repetition.

Table Top Racing: World Tour (Xbox One)Click For the Full Picture Archive

The good news is that Table Top Racing: World Tour has a great look that will win you over early on. While the mobile originals looked a bit muddy, this Xbox One game looks crisp and is full of fun flourishes. Playrise Digital has created a bunch of cool locations that are teaming with character. It also plays well, which is what you might expect from a team made up of racing game veterans. Seeing all the things they get right only makes the inherent monotony that much harder to swallow.

As second tries go, Table Top Racing: World Tour is a good one. It's not an essential racing game, but it does a good job of steering the franchise in the right direction. It looks great and it's hard to deny the joy of driving past old stereo equipment and wine bottles. Sadly, it's held back by the short tracks and limited selection. I would love to see this team take one more stab at the series, because they're so close to nailing the formula and creating something truly special.
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