Pure 90’s nostalgia.

I grew up in arcades. Sure those sound like fossils now, but racing games in arcades were the absolute best. Titles like OutRun and San Francisco Rush are some of my best gaming memories. So to think that today the genre is relatively niche, truly makes me sad. When a racing game comes along though, I pay attention. Developer Aquiris’ latest title Horizon Chase Turbo brings back those memories with its 90’s inspired racer, combining today’s technology with enough retro flair make this game a must-play for arcade hobos like myself.

The name inspires little confidence. It feels like the dev team took a fishbowl of 90’s buzzwords from other games and drew three out. One look though and this game had my attention. The polygons are sharp and the colors vibrant. It also helps that the game clocks in at a rock-solid 60fps and controls like a dream. Everything I want from an arcade racer is present here. One race and I was drawn in.

MSRP: $19.99
Platforms: PS4, PC
Price I’d Pay: $19.99

Everything about this game screams 90’s arcade racer. The view is behind the car. Turns are handled in a drifting fashion. When I ram into other cars I bumper back and lose speed. The idea is to perfect the run and collect tokens scattered around the track. Each track has a theme and again feels lifted straight out of the past. Players blast through heats and earn points to unlock new ones. There is just enough here to keep me coming back for just one more race, and I adore it.

Horizon Chase Turbo also sports split-screen racing. Up to four players can compete and it is just as much fun as the single player. I love games that support local play. Players can also hop online for racing and just leader board fighting, but playing together on the same screen is infinitely more enjoyable. While not on par with racers like Mario Kart or Sonic Racing, it gets the job done.

The indie scene is now being run by people who played games at the same time I grew up with them. Titles like Horizon Chase Turbo exemplify that at every turn. The game tugs at my nostalgic strings, while also delivering precision game play that is enjoyable in repetition. Finding a hook and capturing it seems to be the challenge these days, but developer Aquiris has nailed it. I was always saying “just one more race.” That is the sign of a well-polished game.

There is a lot of crap to wade through in gaming today. So when something as special and fun as Horizon Chase Turbo comes along, I feel the need to shout it from the rooftops. If you grew up in arcades loving those classic sit-down racing games, this is one you need to play. I cannot wait to spend more time with it, and hope the devs get a chance to make more titles that rekindle my childhood nostalgia.

Review copy of game provided by publisher.

  • Glorious frame rate
  • Controls are pitch-perfect
  • Captures that classic arcade-racing feel
  • Some progression issues
Written by
Ken is the Editor-in-Chief of this hole in the wall and he loves to troll for the fun of it. He also enjoys long walks through Arkham Asylum and the cool air of Shadow Moses Island. His turn-ons include Mortal Kombat, Metal Gear Solid and StarCraft.