If you're of a certain age and you've owned a PlayStation at some point in your life, you probably have some fond memories of the futuristic racing series Wipeout. And while it's never made the crossover to Xbox over the years, R8 Games has created a faithful and enjoyable spiritual successor in the form of Pacer, which is just now making its Xbox One debut after being released for other platforms late last year.
The gameplay has a similar style to Wipeout, requiring you to manoeuvre your Craft at extremely high speeds with perfect precision. It takes a bit of getting used to - you use the A button to accelerate and the RT and LT buttons to perform sharp turns, and those turns are extremely twitchy, so delicate movements are critical in order to achieve success. The game mixes things up with strategically placed boost pads along with weapons that can be customised and upgraded in an impressive variety of ways, with plenty of options to unlock.
It all feels good in practice, and you can compete in quick races, online multiplayer, and a primarily story-less, but nevertheless enjoyable enough career mode. Some of the races are definitely more engaging than others though, with more standard races tending to be the most thrilling, whereas events focused around destroying other players, for example, are a bit too hectic and luck-driven to get overly excited about. Pacer is at its best when you're flying past other racers at ultra high speeds, rather than being forced to follow other objectives such as destroying them.
Unsurprisingly, Pacer also features an appropriate soundtrack complete with tunes from Tim Wright, A.K.A CoLD SToRAGE, who is well-known for being a part of the Wipeout series. It all adds up to making Pacer the closest thing you can get to Wipeout on Xbox One (and Xbox Series X and S for that matter), and while it doesn't quite live up to those lofty standards, there's still plenty to enjoy here if you're a fan of the genre.