Nintendo Switch Just Quietly Released Two Nostalgic Racing Games

Check out these overlooked racers this month.

A Nintendo 64 controller and Transfer Pak, taken on May 24, 2019. (Photo by Phil Barker/Future Publi...
Retro Gamer Magazine/Future/Getty Images

After adding Super Mario World 2: Yoshi’s Island earlier this month, Nintendo Switch has a few more additions to the line up that players may be less familiar with. Starting today, Nintendo Switch Online subscribers can play Extreme G and Iggy’s Reckin’ Balls, two Nintendo 64 racers that both put a unique twist on the racing genre.

Extreme G is the more recognizable of the pair, as it’s more of a standard racing game and also got a lot more attention upon its original release. Extreme G is a sci-fi racer where players zip around track at incredible speeds, something like Nintendo 64’s answer to the PlayStation racer Wipeout. The difference is that, while Wipeout featured futuristic spaceships to race in, Extreme G puts players on what are essentially souped up sci-fi motorcycles. Also like in Wipeout, competitors can pick up weapons as they race along the track to slow their opponents and gain an upper hand.

Two lesser known racing games join Nintendo Switch Online today.

Reception to Extreme G was positive, giving it a score of 82 on Metacritic. Its sales and critical reception were enough to get the game three sequels. Despite that, it’s not one of the best known Nintendo 64 games in the Switch Online library, so there’s a good chance it will be new for many players.

Iggy’s Reckin’ Balls is the more obscure title heading to Switch Online, but also the one with the quirkier premise. As opposed to Extreme G’s relatively straightforward racing, Iggy’s Reckin’ Balls throws grappling hooks into the mix just for the hell of it. Its circular races take place on large winding towers, with players competing to be the first one to the top. The grappling hooks equipped on each vehicle can be used to drag yourself along the track or smash other racers to slow them down.

The New Switch Online additions come after an already packed lineup for the month of April.

Unlike Extreme G, Iggy’s Reckin’ Balls didn’t warrant a sequel. It got mixed reviews upon release, and has been mostly forgotten since. Still, it’s a genuine oddity of a racing game, and could be worth checking out for anyone interested in seeing the unsung Nintendo 64 games on Switch Online.

Both Extreme G and Iggy’s Reckin’ Balls feature online and offline multiplayer modes, so anyone who does gravitate to their intriguing racing styles can drive to their heart’s content with friends.

As much as Nintendo Switch Online is valued for bringing the best, most memorable games of past consoles to a modern handheld, this month’s racing offerings show there’s more to it than that. Rather than just a new way to play old favorites, Nintendo Switch Online digging into the less praised parts of Nintendo’s past also makes it a great tool for discovering some games players might never have heard of otherwise. With Yoshi’s Island and this week’s more under-the-radar racers all coming within a month, it’s a great time to explore both old classics and maybe some new favorites.

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