F-Zero GX for the Nintendo GameCube was an amazing racing game, with fast-paced action and cool visuals. There really hasn’t been another game like it in Nintendo’s library since until Fast RMX for the Nintendo Switch has come along.
A spiritual successor to the F-Zero and Wipeout franchises, Fast RMX brings its unique brand of futuristic racing to the Switch, with some of the fastest racing you’ll ever experience.
The draw for Fast RMX is the aforementioned speed of the racing (Fast is in the name for a reason). I recall playing F-Zero GX and constantly slamming into barriers and falling off the courses before I eventually learned how to control my car, and this game brought me right back to those experiences.
It’s jarring to be racing so fast, but the simple and intuitive control scheme helps alleviate any fumbling around until you get used to the speed. You have your acceleration, brakes (which you should definitely be using to hit those turns), lean buttons, your boost and a Switch Phase button.
Switching Phases is a feature exclusive to Fast RMX that takes the boost pads from F-Zero and makes them more skill-based. Before, all racers had to do was position their cars over the boost pads to gain a bit of a boost or to refill their boost gauge. In Fast RMX , the boost pads are color-coordinated (blue and orange) and racers need to Switch Phases (colors) between the two to match the boost pad. If you’re the same color, you’ll gain a boost. If you’re the opposite color, it will actually slow you down. This forces players to think ahead and act quickly when making turns and speeding through these stages.
It also adds more to the skill level of the game. Not only do you have to be a good driver and avoid ramming into walls, but you’ll need to be quick-fingered to Switch Phases while going for those much-needed boosts.
There are 30 different levels, and while they all have that futuristic style you see in F-Zero games, they all play differently or vary up the layout enough to give each their own feel. There are levels with a lot of straight runs but the boost pads are on the sides with no railings so the danger level is increased and there are levels that have you boosting over to new platforms to continue the race.
Cars are futuristic in ‘Fast RMX’ in the same way they were in ‘F-Zero’
The one gripe I do have with Fast RMX are the cars themselves. You start off with a few and then unlock more as you progress through the different cups (there are 15 cars total) but while their stats determining acceleration, top speed and boost are different they all feel the same in how they drive.
When you’re going so fast and put enough distance between you and your opponent, any differences are barely noticeable. At the end, I felt more inclined to just pick a car I felt looked the best, instead of any real strategy.
Weight is really the biggest difference maker that I experienced. If you boost into a lighter car, you can spin them out effectively taking them out of the race for a few precious seconds.
In terms of game modes, Fast RMX gives the standard Cup Tournament mode where you face off against computers to get that number one spot. However, you do have a Hero Mode that really tests the driving skills of players. Not only do you have to get first place, but you can’t fall off or sustain enough damage to explode or it’s over. Just falling off once has you starting over from the beginning.
The online component of Fast RMX works very well. You’ll be put in a race with other players online and there weren’t any lag or problems with the connection or matchmaking whatsoever.
It’s also great to have a local splitscreen experience for the Nintendo Switch. While I recommend playing Fast RMX local when it’s hooked to the television, you can play it in portable mode, even if the control scheme becomes a big harder to get used to while you use only one Joy Con.
Local multiplayer in ‘Fast RMX’
Even single player in handheld mode on the Switch worked well. The fast pace of the game is even more startling when you’re playing on a smaller screen, but I still had a lot of fun nonetheless.
Overall, Fast RMX is a great game to pick up to bolster your Nintendo Switch library. For just $20, you’ll get a great multiplayer racer that really takes speed to another level. The single-player experience is a modest one and definitely a great choice if you’re looking to shift gears from playing a time-consuming game like Breath of the Wild. While the cars don’t have feel different in terms of how they race, the stages and the fast-paced action make this game a blast.