Fast RMX Review: Fulcon Kick

Credit: Shin'en Multimedia
Credit: Shin'en Multimedia /

Fast RMX boosts its way into the Nintendo Switch launch line-up as a fast-paced, albeit simple racing title for all styles of single or multiplayer fun.

Developer: Shin’en Multimedia

Publisher: Shin’en Multimedia

Platform: Nintendo Switch

Release Date: March 3, 2017

Criticisms regarding the Nintendo Switch’s launch line-up are dissipating quickly as people actually get their hands on these games and discover, first, that Breath of the Wild will absorb 90% of their time with the console, and that the remainder of the line-up is surprisingly good too, for the most part. Fast RMX sits comfortably in the surprisingly good category, especially for fans of F-Zero. As someone who hasn’t done much game racing outside of Mario Kart, I was pleasantly surprised at how much fun Fast RMX was to just play for hours at a time, boosting and phasing my way from track to track.

It’s still a fairly straightforward gravity racing game, where you pick your car and your course and zoom around the track several times, occasionally crashing into walls or bumping other racers. You can collect glowing orbs along the course to fill up your boost meter, and use its power to zip forward and smash cars out of your way at opportune times. But most interesting to a newcomer like myself was the ability to swap my car’s “phase,” from orange to blue and back again. Littered across each track are various boost pads, obstacles, or jumps that match one color or the other. Landing on one with the matching phase gives you a boost of speed while landing with the opposite slows you.

fast rmx
Credit: Shin’en Multimedia /

The tracks are lovely to look at, especially on the TV screen…

In early courses, these phase shifts are mostly trivial in terms of obstacles and merely ask that you learn the course well to hit them all. This lets you get used to the mechanic and enjoy the rush from hitting those powerful boosts for the first time. On later tracks you may need to get some practice swapping quickly, especially on higher difficulty speeds. Admittedly, the two higher speed categories don’t feel that much faster than the introductory Subsonic category, simply because Subsonic is so darn fast on its own. The AI can be fierce, too, so don’t expect to get off easy, even as a beginner.

The track selection for Fast RMX features a wide variety of locales, from lush, stormy jungles to F-Zero style cityscapes to outer space. The tracks are lovely to look at, especially on the TV screen, and often include interesting effects such as heavy, obscuring rains or sandstorms or giant fans to blow you off the track. Some of these, the sandstorms being one example, make interesting use of the HD Rumble to make you feel like the thing you’re controlling is being battered, struck, or blown away. As someone who was skeptical about HD Rumble’s use in specific scenarios outside of 1-2-Switch, its occasional appearance added a surprising and pleasing level of immersion beyond the usual “car rumbles when you run into a wall” tech.

fast rmx
Credit: Shin’en Multimedia /

Fast RMX includes a Championship single-player game mode where you’ll race your way through ten different cups with three tracks apiece, unlocking new cups and cars as you go and unlocking the higher speed difficulty levels once you’ve finished the one below it. Multiplayer uses the same tracks and can be played on local split screen, local with other Nintendo Switches (not tested), or online with a maximum total of eight racers. I was impressed the ease with which my friends and I raced local multiplayer on the split screen, even on the Switch in tablet form. You can’t unlock anything in this mode, though, so I recommend running some Championship races first to give your friends a wider variety of cars to choose from.

Online multiplayer was a bit different. While the game itself ran smoothly, it didn’t seem to detect where my car or my opponents’ cars were with any notable level of accuracy. Multiple times I’d see myself far ahead or behind a car, only to see it right on my side the next second. A few times I finished a race in what I thought was second place, only to find I had gotten fourth or fifth because the game hadn’t shown the other racers on my screen accurately. My opponents occasionally appeared to jump whole sections of the track due to connectivity lag. Not exactly my idea of a fun competition.

fast rmx
Credit: Shin’en Multimedia /

More from Reviews

Finally, there’s Hero Mode, which is a significantly more challenging style where your boost meter doubles as a shield meter. If your shield drops to zero, you lose and the race stops. While you can still collect boost orbs around the track as always, every bump into a wall or another car costs you some of your meter, and you’ll have to be both cautious and knowledgeable of the track to pull through. I, a person who crashes into walls, did not do well in this mode, but I can respect its appeal for those who love the game and want a greater challenge.

While there’s not much else to Fast RMX, what’s there is worth pursuing as a low-cost, launch day racing option. It’s a polished, enjoyable title that’s at its best on the couch with friends and well-suited to the Switch’s portability. Unlocking all the courses, cars, and difficulties will take you some time if you’re dedicated to doing it, and Hero Mode offers a respectable challenge for more seasoned racers. There’s little fluff to this title, but for some, the sleek, straightforward style may be the draw.

. Fast RMX. 7.5. With few bells and whistles, Fast RMX delivers all it promises: it’s a simple, fun, and challenging gravity racer, full stop. The phase shifting mechanics are interesting if not dynamic enough to be called innovative, so while Fast RMX doesn’t do anything especially stand-out, its level of polish, track varieties, and series of unlockables will nonetheless keep you boosting forward through its courses for some time. Consider avoiding the online multiplayer and inviting a few friends over instead to experience the closest thing to an F-Zero title we might get for awhile.. Shin'en Multimedia

A copy of this game was provided to App Trigger for the purpose of this review. All scores are ranked out of 10, with .5 increments. Click here to learn more about our Review Policy.