Review: Aqua Moto Racing Utopia

Welcome to our review of the first aquatic racer on Nintendo Switch, Aqua Moto Racing Utopia.

Having its roots in smartphone gaming, this game is clearly going to be compared to Wave Race, the classic game on GameCube. Those are some mighty big shoes to fill and despite a clear Nintendo feeling, it comes up short if you compare it to one of the greatest games on the GameCube.


But I need to say this, while it does not compare, it also does not disappoint with a mixed bag of feelings. What really set me back from really enjoying the game, the clearly higher learning curve and unpredictable water physics this game brings to the table. From very violent waves to all out smooth sailing, pun intended, this game brings it all. Exactly this is where I thought the game fell short. In my second race ever, I was hit by such big waves and well, it felt nearly impossible to steer my way around the buoys and I ended up missing three buoys in my very first lap. Disqualification was my reward…

When I mention the steering, you basically are limited to acceleration and the option to make more powerful turns. While a game like this needs no more, I felt that the game often limited my steering and while accidentally pressing another button, normally used to perform tricks, made me end up either steering straight into a boat or one of many other objects to be found in the water.


Now, what I did enjoy, there is no real alternative to this game and despite its’ flaws and annoying water physics, it is the only real option and it does look and perform nicely on the Nintendo Switch. When the water is calm, it is easy to line up for that amazing jump and accompanying trick you want to perform. Under perfect conditions even those horrible pin turns are not even something you will dislike. But sadly the waves are a little too unpredictable.

The game is all about winning and advancing, but even in novice and beginner mode, I faced some challenges that were above my expectations in a game like this. It was probably my biggest disappointment that the tutorial made it seem rather easy compared to the real deal…

I do not want to sound negative when describing this game, it is not bad at all, but just in dire need of a more stable physics engine for the water. If they properly tweak this, it might even become a great game. Would it compare to Wave race at that time? I think it might. Graphically this game is most enjoyable and like I mentioned, it is a mixed feeling I am experiencing.


In conclusion, I do think this game is promising, but in dire need of a patch. I am serious when I say that this game could be a great game if the water physics get a well deserved tweak and make it much more accessible than it is now. The current price tag and everything in mind, this game just barely passes at 50%.

Part of the disappointment is also because the one other water racing game I could think of, straight out of my head, was immediately one of the best. It had some very big boots to fill and it failed…