Milestone is best known for its motorbike simulation games. Being an arcade racer based on a popular toy car line, Hot Wheels Unleashed 2 – Turbocharged is a wild diversion for the Italian studio. With its blisteringly fast racing and over-the-top tracks, Hot Wheels Unleashed 2 is a lot of fun if you’re looking for a break from serious racing simulations.
While Hot Wheels Unleashed 2 is accessible for all ages, there are a few mechanics you may not be aware of that give you advantages in the race. These Hot Wheels Unleashed 2 tips and tricks will help improve your driving skills and beat the competition.
Drifting is essential in Hot Wheels Unleashed 2 if you want to go fast. Swinging the back end out not only looks cool but is also a quick way of filling up your boost. It’s also the fastest way around corners in most scenarios.
Like many classic arcade racers, Hot Wheels Unleashed 2 adopts a brake-to-drift mechanic. As you approach a corner, tap the brake using the left trigger. Reapplying the throttle will kick the back end out and start a slide. Steer into the corner and keep the car center.
Don’t steer too sharply or you may lose control and hit a wall or fall off the track. If a long straight is coming as you exit the drift, apply the boost you’ve earned to straighten the car and regain speed.
One of the easiest ways to get ahead of the competition at the start of the race is performing a boost start. Mario Kart veterans will be familiar with this tactic.
To perform a boost start, press and hold the accelerator using the right trigger as soon as the countdown says “2.” Your tyres will start to smoke, and a green flame will appear under your car.
Keep holding the accelerator and press the boost button (X on PlayStation/A on Xbox/right shift on PC) as soon as the countdown says “go.” This will give you a speed boost as you race off the line, allowing you to get ahead of opponents early.
This tactic doesn’t work for every car, however. If you see a guage appear on-screen next to your car, tap the accelerator until the meter hits the green area. Keep holding the accelerator until the countdown says “go” and press boost to perform a boost start.
Hot Wheels Unleashed 2 doesn’t just add new cars and tracks, but it also introduces new gameplay mechanics. One of these is a new jump ability. To perform a jump, press triangle if you’re playing on PlayStation, Y if you’re playing on Xbox, and K if you’re playing on PC.
Jumping allows you to avoid opponents and find hidden shortcuts. Some vehicles can also double jump, allowing you to leap in the air even higher and access hard-to-reach areas.
The only caveat is you need boost to jump. If your boost meter is empty, you can’t jump. Thankfully, there are several ways to earn boost from drifting to driving over boost pads on the track.
Slipstreaming is another effective way to way of rapidly filling up your boost meter. A real tactic used in motorsport, slipstreaming is where a driver directly follows the car in front. This lowers the drag and air resistance, allowing the driver who is slipstreaming to gain speed.
Even though the physics in Hot Wheels Unleashed 2’s aren’t realistic, you can use slipstreaming to your advantage. To slipstream, follow the opponent in front as close as you can. If you do it right, “slipstream” text will appear on-screen above the car you’re slipstreaming. This will give you a quick boost refill.
Upgrade your car
Hot Wheels Unleashed 2 introduces a new upgrade system. Every car starts in the Stock class, but they can be upgraded to Powered and the top Ultimate class by equipping perks. To upgrade vehicles in Hot Wheels Unleashed 2, head to your Garage and select Collection.
From here, select the vehicle you want to upgrade and enter the Vehicle Management screen by pressing X on PlayStation and A on Xbox. Here, you can select Powered and Ultimate to upgrade your car’s stats. Upgrading from Stock to Powered or Ultimate classes will cost a hefty chunk of credits, or you can use Upgrade tokens earned from playing the game.
You can also tweak your car’s stats further by spending Skill points on perks. These upgrade your car’s boost and handling or make your car immune to obstacles. Each perk has an advantage or disadvantage. For example, a perk might improve your car’s handling or drifting abilities but reduce the boost charge rate.
Does Hot Wheels Unleashed 2 lead the way? Find out in our review. You can also check out the full car list here to find your favourite car. If you're new to the series, it’s also worth familiarising yourself with the controls.
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