A hybrid of top-down racer and mechanic simulator, Mechanic Battle is an unusual proposition.

Mostly, it’s a top down racer with a few annoying quirks – it’s far too easy to hit a random piece of scenery and come to a dead stop, then find yourself unable to get back into the race properly. It’s slightly at odds with the arcade-style racing that this happens at all – and it definitely does put a dampener on what is otherwise a really nicely put together racing game.

However, pair this with the car tuning and customisation – which is surprisingly extensive, even just from a visual customisation point of view – and things get a bit more interesting. Though you’re likely to struggle at first with a basic car and a lack of funds to tune your vehicle with, get a few races under your belt and you’ll be able to make incremental improvements to give yourself a better chance of winning.

You can simply utilise a slider to adjust many aspects of your car’s performance, but there are mini-games for some tuning tasks that’ll help to give you an edge too (or not, if you don’t do very well at them!).

Mechanic Battle is surprisingly generous at doling out in-game cash too, so even if you’re not doing well you tend to still earn money to get yourself back in the garage and doing better next time.

There’s a few race types – including standard races, eliminations and tournaments, as a few examples – and there’s a small selection of cars to aim towards buying too.

The soundtrack is nicely done and the sound in general isn’t bad either. It’s not the most technically accomplished game from a visual standpoint, but it does what it sets out to do quite nicely.

Though it could have perhaps used a little more dev time on tuning the racing and adding some extra aspects to the mechanic/tuning aspects of the game (which end up feeling a little tacked on), Mechanic Battle is a cheap and cheerful game that I’ve spent a lot more time with than I thought I would.

Surprisingly addictive and fun, it’s a low budget indie title that’s better than you may expect. No masterpiece, but far from a disaster.

Many thanks to Ultimate Games for providing me with a code for Mechanic Battle for review purposes. Mechanic Battle is out now on Nintendo Switch.

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