Zero Gear Free Until Sunday

Cartoon kart racing game Zero Gear is going to cost $20. But is it worth that many American dollars? There’s a good way of finding out, which is playing the full game, for free, over on the Steam gaming content download delivery system, which many of your will already have installed on your computers. Report back with cartoon kart racing game evaluations, readers. Meanwhile, I will try and get this Divinity 2 article written. That game takes some time to play.


  1. Tei says:

    Good thing some has to show a good use for DRM. Timed testing for a game is probably the best thing in the world, next to cake. And cake is great.

    • mbp says:

      but the cake is a ….

      No, never mind, sorry I brought it up.

    • bookwormat says:

      Agreed. On the Android market, you get an automatic refund when you uninstall an application within 24h after the first install. This significantly lowers the barrier to spend money there.

  2. terry says:

    Been playing this on and off since the beta, I like the football game immensely but the rest feels so-so in a way I can’t put my finger on. Hopefully they flesh it out a bit because it just feels a little sterile and empty to me right now, particularly in the single player (though I’m aware that its geared towards multi). It’s fun for sure with chums, however.

  3. Macq says:

    This game is on monthly subscription or what?

  4. JohnG says:

    Just had a quick blast. The server browser is a bit pants, takes forever to ping servers it seems, and steadfastly refuses to sort by country.

    I tried the football game but I kept just flying past the ball at 90mph, turning around and finding the balls half way down the field the next second.

    The racing is okay, though possibly a bit simplistic, hold down forwards, and turn at the right points.

  5. mooncalf says:

    Played this for a few hours today with a regular gaming buddy, and we agreed that Zero Gear was hands down the most FUN in a game we’d had all week.

  6. The Graham says:

    I fired up the game and went to the settings so it would run on my jalopy of a PC. I was greeted by a meter that says “indieness.” The higher the value, the more 8bit-like the game came. Quite hilarious indeed.

  7. Morti says:

    This game pales in comparison to games like Mario Kart or Upshift Strikeracer. Particularly the last one. If you are looking for a GOOD arcade racing game, with powerups and what not, Upshift Strikeracer is your game.

    Zero Gear? Not so much.

  8. bookwormat says:

    For anyone who knows:

    Is this playable alone? offline?

    How is it different from Mario Kart?

    Is this a normal steam subscription, or is it an MMO-like subscription with a monthly fee? Or something else? Are there microtransactions?

    Is this fun?

  9. dodo head says:

    If the netcode is as bad as it was during the beta: no. As a multiplayer game it’s laughably bad and practicably unplayable over the Internet, and that’s even with low ping.

  10. JohnG says:

    Having played it a bit more, it’s definitely a “Meh” from me.

    It’s a good looking game that runs fine… there’s just not much substance behind it.

    Races are won by the people who stay on the track and don’t nudge an object or hit a bank, which sends you spinning and pointing in the wrong direction, and it takes so long to get back to facing the right direction that the rest of the field have raced half way around the track in the time.

    If you’re on a wide open track the weapons will never hit any target since they’re just so easy to avoid, and don’t seek, except the hug-bot but that’s slow and hardly ever catches anyone. On a tight track you get hit once, point the wrong direction and are then out of contention for the rest of the race.

  11. Vinraith says:

    The only way this would be interesting is if it had split-screen multiplayer, anyone want to save me the download time by telling me if it does?

    • bookwormat says:

      @Vinraith It is a 250mb download, so there should not be much download time at all.


      – no split screen
      – bots are available for solo play
      – network games work well.
      – not sure about the tracks yet. The few I played were pretty boring.
      – The Mouse/Keyboard works fine, but I will try this again with xpadder and my rumblepad this evening

      It’s quite fun, at least for the few minutes I played. I would have implemented this as a flash or as a web game, but this works as well.

    • Vinraith says:


      Thanks. Granted that’s a small download, but since the sole reason to get a cart racer IMO is to play it with the wife, there’s not much point in bothering if there’s no split screen.

    • Frankie The Patrician[PF] says:

      This: link to

  12. Blather Bob says:

    No splitscreen. It’s networked games only, and like dodo head says the netcode can’t handle any latency at all. It has single-player in the sense that you can start a local server and add some bots, but that’s not very fun with the bots presenting zero challenge.

    Also the controls feel bad. I know Super Mario Kart must have had digital controls too, but I don’t remember it being this bad. Maybe something to do with the turning speed vs. accuracy, and this being tuned by developers who have been playing their own game for 2 years. Or it could just be the lag between pressing a key and the server telling your client to turn your kart, and the lag after releasing a key and watching your kart continue to turn.

    It’s just a regular game, no subscription fees. And the developers seem very involved with their community, so I imagine it will continue to receive a lot of post-release support. But I think it’s a game I’d only ever really consider getting if I saw it in a Steam sale for $2 or so, and still not be too certain.

  13. The Graham says:

    After playing it a little more, the thing that really irks me are the physics. It feels like the slightest tap can send you flying. Realistic for most racers, yes, but I don’t particularly want realism in my kart racer. If anything, it feels like an upgrade of Super Tux Kart.

  14. Rudolfo says:

    definitely not worth your time. blocky graphics, bad driving mechanics (unexplainable behaviour, physics of a tank rather than a kart: you can turn on the spot, takes forever to reset).

    needs more polish, the idea is okay. Maybe go and ask the Trackmania Team if the wanna do a drive-em-up?!

  15. blech says:

    Tried it, didn’t like it. Although I did like the character customization.

  16. Inanimotioon says:

    Very laggy at the moment.

    If it had better gamepad integration I’d like it more.
    But I guess the whole freelook aiming doesn’t work so well with a gamepad.

  17. Labbes says:

    I have been playing this all evening with friends, and while it is far from perfect (physics, camera control), it is a lot of fun. You can customise your character near endlessly, and the sports maps are great. Complaining about the unfair camera and physics is even better than complaining about the referee in football. There’s a sale where if you buy the game four times, you get them for 20€…and I will definitely buy this game for 5.

  18. Mr Bismarck says:

    Oh dear.

    I’d like to thank Steam for letting me try this for free so I can see what an utter disaster it is without shelling out any cash.

    Horrible kart control that lags so much on 90% of servers that it feels like I’m sending steering inputs by mail. Continued issues like falling through scenery and then a nice topping of crash to desktop to finish things off.

  19. Kelron says:

    Terrible controls, not fun at all. Some nice ideas for game modes, but nothing special and it’s not well made.

  20. Frankie The Patrician[PF] says:

    I played the beta…it’s fun for a moment, but nothing more…The price should be much lower, imho