Anyone who has read my reviews already knows I’m a big Cartoon Network fan, especially with shows such as Adventure Time and Regular Show. So what happens when you take characters from those shows along with a couple of other fan favorites and mix it with Mario Kart? You get Formula Cartoon All-Stars, a fun mobile title that’s a great way to pass some time this summer or anytime for that matter.
While this game reminds me a lot of Rare’s RC Pro-Am for the NES (yeah, I’m telling my age there) with it’s controls and a somewhat top-down view, most will see it for what it is, CN’s take on Mario Kart. The controls are a little tricky and take some getting used to, but once you get the hang of it, you’ll be karting with the best them. Your kart automatically moves forward while you steer using a steering wheel icon you can place on either the bottom left or right side of the screen. You slide your finger left or right to turn, but the controls change depending on what angle you’re viewing it from, hence the tricky part. So while you’ll start out making a right turn, as soon as your character is facing down and heading to the right again, the right becomes your left. Yeah it sounds weird but you’ll get it once you start playing.
As with Mario Kart there’s plenty of items and power-ups for you to collect, such as coins that you can spend to unlock parts to upgrade and change your kart. You’ll also find zany weapons and power-ups for you to gain an advantage over your opponents, such as frost to freeze and slow down other racers or bubble gum to put them in a sticky situation. Of course you’ll have to watch out too, as they can also lay down traps and use weapons. You can also use your coins to unlock other famous Cartoon Network characters such as Finn from Adventure Time, Mordecai from Regular Show, Ben from Ben 10 Omniverse and more.
When you play, there’s two modes to choose from, Adventure mode where you’ll compete to earn the most coins and stars for making first, second, or third place which you can then use to unlock new locations. Then there’s Tournament mode where you can compete in race tracks based on Cartoon Network shows in order to reach the top of the online leaderboard against other real players. Sadly that’s as close as you’re going to get to any online play here, but for most mobile gamers this is good enough. The graphics and sounds may not push your mobile device to the limit, but they serve their purpose nicely and will keep you in the game.
Formula Cartoon All-Stars is a nice little way to pass the time during long trips or anytime you’re down for some mobile gaming. The controls take a bit of getting used to, and there’s a lack of online gameplay, but if you’re a Cartoon Network fan and love Mario Kart, then you’ll want to pull up to the starting line for this one.