Micro-miniature cars have invaded Xbox live in D3’s Mad Tracks. This action based toy-car racer brings pint sized love to the Xbox Live Arcade. If you have some MS points to blow, we’ll let you know if you should gas up with Mad Tracks, or hold off for next weeks offering.

Mad Tracks seems to be inspired from other miniature racers like Micro Machines and RC Racing, and while Mad Tracks wants to be more then its source material it never makes it across the finish line. Adding fuel to many gamers secret love for toy racing cars and the dynamics of Honey I Shrunk the Kids, Mad Tracks takes toy cars and puts them in a real-world world and hopes gamers will bite. It’s a needle in a haystack concept which isn't worth the time to find. In Mad Tracks heart it wants to be something more than the overall product matches up to and I know this can happen a fair amount given the nature of the Live Arcade, but Mad Tracks seems a little thin even as a downloadable game.

After spending some time with Mad Tracks it’s hard to find a reason to go back to the track for a few more laps. If you’re really interested in Mad Tracks I have to tag on a warring to download the demo first. Depending on what you expect Mad Tracks could meet your expectations, or it could spring a flat, which is my case. The concept and small vs. large concept is interesting and at times developer Load Inc. accomplishes this feat, but it’s a little too late and never enough to really feel worth the investment. The potential was there and the mark was missed, hopefully another developer can rewrite Mad Tracks shortcomings and build a better micro-racer.

One aspect that almost pulls Mad Tracks out of the ditch is its approach to be more than a racer. Mixing up racing and Mario Party styled mini-games, Mad Tracks looks to broaden its appeal. This is mixed up with a few selectable car types, power-ups, and specialty themed activities and levels. To Mad Tracks credit some of the ideas like the pool table themed level are fun, but it’s a cheap thrill that could have been improved with a boost to the games physics engine. To further explain, this level has you sinking your coloured balls before your adversary. This is done by smacking your car into the ball and launching into the hole with the goal to sink the eight ball. The problem comes into to play in the mechanics and not the mini-games concept. The balls a weightless and feel like rubber balls bouncing all over the place. The same goes for the cars themselves and virtually everything else in the game. This turns Mad Tracks from a fun sure winner to a gimmicked up budget title.

Mad Tracks has a few other elements that hinder its progress besides the important game mechanics, mainly the weak and cheap artificial intelligence. Bumping up the difficulty doesn’t help Mad Tracks contributing to its demise; it just takes Mad Tracks from stupid easy to stupid. I wanted hard give Mad Tracks a little more depth, but it seems I was searching for something that wasn’t there.  Mad Tracks also suffers from a once done syndrome, meaning once you’ve tried out a new mini-game there isn’t much reason to revisit the game unless you’re an achievement hound or you're looking for a micro racer to share with friends. Mad Tracks supports up to four players and is online ready. Now all you have to do is find some other racers to flag a few laps. This will be harder then it sounds... I've been there.

Graphically, Mad Tracks doesn’t offer much in the way of eye candy or solid presentation, even running at 720 progressive scan. The cars do have a slight amount of charm although it’s noting you haven’t seen before. The audio doesn’t help out this situation either with a repetitive soundtrack and engine noises. Even with my Xbox live lowered expectations, Mad Tracks doesn’t live up to the quality that some other titles have pulled off under the same development restrictions.

Mad Tracks is a missed hit. Conceptually, Mad Tracks should have made a decent Xbox Live title with its light hearted racing and fun approach. In the end Mad Tracks comes out feeling cheap and underdeveloped. I would advise you avoid Mad Tracks and save your points for another title with more substance. If you’re still not convinced on Mad Tracks value, or you have some MS points you’re thinking on using up, download the demo and give it a shot, although I wouldn't put another drop into this tank.

Final Score: 4

Reviewed by Jimmy | 06.26.07


  • Crazy Arcade-Style Fun: Remember the toy cars you used to play with, setting up tracks around the house and racing around chair legs? Mad Tracks is an arcade toy-car racing game that sets up its tracks in places like restaurants, toy stores, and miniature golf courses for that extra level of racing difficulty and fun.
  • Fun Challenges: Six races, 9 mini-games and up to 12 original achievements will keep you racing.
  • Cool Options: Twelve different cars and 12 different power-ups, including rockets and oil slicks, keep the racing fresh.
  • Multiple Modes: There are lots of ways to play including Arcade Mode (both Solo and Split Screen), Championship Mode, and 4-player Live Mode complete with in-game audio chat, multiple leaderboards and weekly resets.
  • Downloads: There's a try before you buy demo, 2 free Gamerpics, and soon, 2 new craze-packed downloadable add-ons of 15 challenges each.

Mad Tracks

D3 Pub

Load Inc.


US Release
May 2007


X360, PC

Player 1-4
HDTV 720p
Multiplayer Vs.
Marketplace DL