How awesome would it be if Mario Kart were released for Android? Pretty awesome, right? Well if wishes were horses we'd all be eating steak, so here's Sonic & SEGA All-Stars Racing.

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That may not be entirely fair. The last two entries in Sega's kart racing franchise have been well-received on consoles, even putting aside the question of why the world's fastest hedgehog needs any kind of vehicle at all when he's racing. Maybe he just really wants some cup holders for that 44oz soda, I dunno. Sonic & SEGA All-Stars Racing is a mobile release of the original SEGA kart racer from 2010, not the more recent Sonic All Star Racing Transformed. It came out for iOS more than two years ago - what's the holdup, SEGA? 

Sonic & SEGA All-Stars Racing features 13 SEGA characters that you know and possibly love: I can recognize Sonic, Knuckles, Tails, Shadow, Dr. Robotnik (or "Eggman," if you're not old enough to drive yet), Amigo from Samba De Amigo, Billy Hatcher, B.D. Joe from Crazy Taxi, Ulala from Space Channel 5, Ryo Hazuki from Shenmue (who should really be driving a forklift instead of a motorcycle), Ai Ai from Super Monkey Ball, and one of those little Chu Chu Rocket mice. If you were a SEGA fan during the Dreamcast days you'll be well-served by the roster and the selection of themed tracks.

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Graphics are decent, but not amazing - the mobile version appears to be a cleaned-up game based on the Nintendo DS release (which was pretty well-received on its own). You've got all the standards of the kart racing genre at your disposal, including wacky tracks, powerups, environmental hazards, and gobs and gobs od personality. If you're looking for a breakneck tour through SEGA's intellectual property, this game should do nicely, and it includes online 4-player races to boot. Not bad for two bucks.

Jeremiah Rice
Jeremiah is a US-based blogger who bought a Nexus One the day it came out and never looked back. In his spare time he watches Star Trek, cooks eggs, and completely fails to write novels.
  • lolzcat

    Why would they short Android users out with the crappy graphics? The iOS versions are Retina display compatible, why not port that? This DS-BS is appalling. Won't be re-purchasing this for my new Galaxy S IV with those pathetic graphics, that's for sure...

    • Magneira

      Get over that retina display crap, its getting old...

      • lolzcat

        I'm not quite understanding the point of your comment. I am complaining that the application screenshots of the game look nowhere as good on Android as they are on the iPhone.

        • Kevin Aaronson

          Me neither, retina display is a term used for idevices that denotes resolution. Your previous comment was valid and I agree, it is total bullshit that devs release ports on Android with subpar resolutions to increase performance on the many android devices, rather than optimizing.

          • lolzcat

            Guess I haven't been around the Android scene long enough to notice this trend (only been an Android user for two weeks, previous five-year iPhone user), but it is disappointing to hear.

            I see no excuse to release a game for Android phones that isn't at least 720p with GOOD textures. 1080p with decent textures would be alright too. This minimalistic attitude towards Android is rather unsettling.

        • Magneira

          Let me explain, you are sein an screnshoot on a site, you are not seing the game on and Android device, the way you said and used the marketing term retina was inplicating that iphones screen are better and the game looks better just because of the screen on the iphone "The iOS versions are Retina display compatible", you see Android have way bigger resolutions than retina displays, like 1080p and if you recall most ps3 and xbox 360 games run on 720p, which are lower than the latest flagship Androids, so how could you expect to have this game to run on bigger resolutions on Android?

          • Leonardo Farage Freitas

            On the ipad with retina display the resolution is superior to the 1080p (2048x1536 versus 1920x1080). In the Iphone the retina is lower than 720p..

          • Magneira

            right, i was only talking about phones, but even this game being optimezed for ipads it will not run at the full resolution, as i said, even on xbox 360 and on ps3 it was running @ 720p, this is not just some mobile game.

          • Leonardo Farage Freitas

            Fair enough.

          • Magneira

            I do agree that are some ports from ios to android that are bad though, and vice versa.

          • A_Noyd

            And there are several Android tablets with 2560x1600 resolution that have superior screens to Retina. So both the Android phones have better displays, than what is available on iPhones, and the latest tablets have better screens than what is on iPad. (Nexus 10, Asus Transformer TF701T, Samsung Note 10.1 2014 edition) Your point?

  • Adam92Wilkins

    Is it worth it? I really like playing kart racers but it seems android is lacking in that category and really only has Mole Kart (https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.droidhen.taomee.molekart&hl=en) but it seems like a really weak mario kart n64 ripoff.

    • lolzcat

      It's a really fun game, I've played it on iOS before making the switch.

      The graphics are lacking quite a bit from the iOS/PC/PS3/360 counterparts, but that won't effect the gameplay if you don't mind it.

    • A.Noid

      Check out Beach Buggy Blitz then.

      • Thomas’

        Beach Buggy Blitz is an endless runner, not a Mario Kart type of game.

    • GraveUypo

      sonic all stars racing transformed is actually way better than mario kart. it's much more fair and skill-driven, unlike mario kart where the best tatic is to stay in last place until half of the last lap then use your stupid last-place-handicap to get unfair itens and overtake everyone in the last minute.

      still haven't tried this one tho, but its safe to assume its at least good. i think.

  • moelsen8

    Sweet. These Sega games are always instant purchases!

  • Francois Roy

    Just you wait a very few week to get it 50% off like every single EA game

  • Confused

    What does 'Installed: 1-5" mean?

  • dude

    About time! Sega of America really like to take their time.

    $2 is well worth the purchase, but I'll have to see how it compared to the PC version.

  • fredric

    They all look crippled compared to other versions of the game!!!

  • GraveUypo

    insta buy. love the console/pc version. its actually worlds BETTER than mario kart

  • numpty

    To be honest, the original S&SAR wasn't particularly highly rated on consoles. It was the later "Transformed" version that got the glowing reviews (and rightly so, it's a lot of fun).

  • Benson

    Why can't they make this multiplayer online instead of locally within wifi?

  • mewikime

    Where is Sonic Dash!?

  • orpickaname

    Again this boring bullshit about Mario Kart... There are many kart racing games, and many are good. Both All Stars Racings are great games.
    And again moronic joke about "why Sonic the Hedgehog is in a car". This is car competition, that's why.
    >Dr. Robotnik (or Eggman bla bla bla) - (why I just cannot copypaste from this cancer site, btw?) - very clever, yes

    Boy, it's like time travel back to 2006.
    sorry for grammar etc

    • Jeremiah Rice

      Sonic R was a Sonic-themed kart racer from 1997 in which Sonic ran while other characters used cars. And it makes sense, because running fast is literally the ONLY thing that Sonic does.

      I can see the need for vehicles in the new Transformed game, but Sonic can reportedly run "faster than the speed of sound." That kinda why he's called Sonic.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=708741524 Robb Nunya

    You keep your horse-steaks away from me Mr!

  • bkamoua

    On my HTC One I launch it and it is just a black screen -_- Step up your game SEGA, I wasted my $5 for nothing.