Lego 2K Drive is the spiritual successor to one of the best kart racers ever made

A Lego racer in a sports car in Lego 2K Drive
(Image credit: Visual Concepts / 2K)

Lego 2K Drive will soon be upon us as the brick-based kart racer is slated to release in less than a week's time, May 16. It's been eagerly anticipated, but its best-looking feature was only properly shown off recently. 

That's because Lego 2K Drive features transforming vehicles, as karts can transform from a standard high-speed street racing car, to an off-road vehicle, to a boat, and even a plane. It adds a new dimension to well-treaded trail blazed by the likes of one of the best Nintendo Switch games, Mario Kart 8 Deluxe, however, it isn't the first time we've seen this innovation. 

Revealed in a recent video on the Lego 2K Hub on YouTube, we now know exactly how vehicles will transform to suit different terrains after it was first teased in the original reveal trailer, and things bare a striking resemblance to Sonic and All-Stars Racing Transformed which did this concept over a decade prior to great success.

Sumo Digital's star-studded sequel gained critical acclaim upon release for the Xbox 360, and PS3 back in 2012 (then later on PC and Nintendo Wii U), with Sonic and All-Stars Racing Transformed currently sitting at 82% on Metacritic regardless of version. Some of the highest praise came from sister-site GamesRadar, which said: "Sonic & All-Stars Racing Transformed could have been another mediocre attempt at a kart racer, but its solid controls, plethora of modes and unlockables, and iconic characters allow it to shine on its own podium.". 

Building a better racer 

Transforming vehicles absolutely makes sense for Lego 2K Drive as the modes of transport themselves are made out of bricks and can be easily dismantled on the go. That's been the greatest appeal to having a Lego game focus on racing ever since the days of the original Lego Racer back in 1999. Taking an open world approach, similar in approach to something like Forza Horizon 5 and Burnout Paradise before it, with an added focus on destruction and chaos. 

I haven't been this excited for a kart racer since Mario Kart 8 since hit the scene almost a decade ago on the Wii U. In a niche genre that's been dominated in recent years by the two biggest names in mascot platforming, not to mention the likes of Crash Team Racing Nitro-Fueled, having Lego step up to pole position after decades away from the race makes for some interesting competition. 

Next week's launch will show if Lego 2K Drive is really all its bricked up to be. I'm optimistic based on everything I've seen and read so far. If nothing else, it should be a good time for racing games fans regardless of playing on the PS5, Xbox Series X, Nintendo Switch, and PC provided the performance holds up across the board. 

Aleksha McLoughlin
Hardware Editor

Aleksha McLoughlin is the Hardware Editor for TechRadar Gaming and oversees all hardware coverage for the site. She looks after buying guides, writes hardware reviews, news, and features as well as manages the hardware team. Before joining TRG she was the Hardware Editor for sister publication GamesRadar+ and she has also been PC Guide's Hardware Specialist. She has also contributed hardware content to the likes of Trusted Reviews, The Metro, Expert Reviews, and Android Central. When she isn't working, you'll often find her in mosh pits at metal gigs and festivals or listening to whatever new black and death metal has debuted that week.