Moto Roader MC review for Nintendo Switch, PS4/5, Xbox One/Series X

Platform: Nintendo Switch
Also On: PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X
Publisher: Ratalaika Game
Developer: Shinyuden (Port)/Masaya Games (Original)
Medium: Digital
Players: 1-5
Online: No
ESRB: E10+

With all the stories about game preservation, any modern release of titles from consoles of years past can usually be greeted with one of two reactions, total elation or total confusion. For some releases it means not having to shell out ridiculous amounts of money and maintaining aging hardware, for others you scratch your head wondering?who is the audience for this. Moto Roader MC is one of those that seems to straddle that fine line. It?s the 3rd entry from an obscure racing series that only existed on the Turbografx-16/PC-Engine. The gameplay evokes Super Off Road or for me specifically, Battle Cross, an equally obscure racing game for the Super Famicom (SNES in Japan) and as someone who was nostalgic for the latter, this title piqued my interest.

Moto Roader MC is a top down single screen racing game where racers can impede others or even themselves with an unlimited amount of rockets/rolling mines. Races feel chaotic and taking the first place seems more dependent on luck rather than skill. I place the blame on the unlimited rockets/mines you can drop. Mario Kart would devolve into a wretched start and stop fest if shells would fly non-stop from every player. You can natively remove car collisions or even use the remake?s rewind feature to mitigate your frustrations, but at that point why get into the driver seat? This chaos can be fun in a multiplayer setting as the game can support 5 players and its 25 courses can make for a fun afternoon or two. Another fun multiplayer excursion is the game?s Omake (bonus) mode, which features a Rocket League-before Rocket League soccer mode where you can ram or shoot rockets/mines at a ball in hopes of knocking it into a goal. There?s 3 fields of play and you can choose between a 1v1 or a 2v2 mode. Although player selection for this mode is kept in the options in the main menu?rather than a sub menu in the omake mode.

This release?s modern container also includes visual adjustments such as filters and resolution options. It also offers save states, however I had no idea how to create them, although like the rewind mode, I don?t necessarily want to use it in a racing game.

I will never object to bringing back older titles to modern platforms, but not everything needs to be dusted off and placed on digital storefronts. Moto Racer MC isn?t necessarily something that should be left in the annals of history, clearly I found the omake mode to be worth playing, even if I find the single player modes unfulfilling. A silver lining for this is maybe it could lead to other ports of TG-16/PC-Engine titles, although the stuff I want to see are IPs owned by Konami (Bonk?s Adventure).

Note: Ratalaika Games provided us with a Moto Roader MC Switch code for review purposes.

Grade: C+