Review – Nickelodeon Kart Racers 3: Slime Speedway

One of the most pleasant gaming surprises of 2020 was Nickelodeon Kart Racers 2, a game that, for all intents and purposes, should have been a disaster. It was a low-budgeted, poorly advertised follow-up to a reviled licensed game published by a company with a mixed-at-best track record. Yet, it was actually pretty good, despite its flaws, leaving a ton of room for improvement for its inevitable sequel. That’s right, I was actually excited for a potential Nickelodeon Kart Racers 3. Initial trailers were hyping me up, mostly due to the new characters (such as Jimmy Neutron) and the inclusion of voice acting. Not to mention the idea of playing a game like this on a next-gen machine, where it could theoretically take advantage of better hardware to rid itself of its previous performance issues.

Then the game code arrived, and boy oh boy, I cannot tell you how much Nickelodeon Kart Racers 3 ended up disappointing me…

Nickelodeon Kart Racers 3 Water

Every single time you drive on water, the framerate tanks to despicable numbers.

Nickelodeon Kart Racers 3: Slime Speedway aimed big. Its predecessor was a blatant Mario Kart clone with a unique power-up/crew system, which is retained in this version, and it’s still its main gameplay-related highlight. However, a few new elements were brought over from Mario Kart Wii and Mario Kart 8 in particular, namely some antigrav-esque sections where you venture through high-speed canals full of trademarked Nickelodeon slime. There’s also the inclusion of motorbikes as optional vehicles. Your vehicles are also amphibian now, becoming proto jet-skis whenever you touch water. You can jump on top of waves to reach new shortcuts, for instance.

In theory, those improvements look minute, but more than enough to warrant a sequel, alongside the aforementioned inclusion of voice acting and new characters. In practice, however, something went wrong during the game’s development process. Really wrong. Astonishingly wrong. Let’s not beat around the bush, Nickelodeon Kart Racers 3: Slime Speedway features the single worst framerate from a game available on a supposedly next-gen platform released so far.

Nickelodeon Kart Racers 3 Bikes

You thought driving a car was hard in Nickelodeon Kart Racers 3? Things become an utter nightmare when riding a bike.

Its predecessor didn’t have the best of performances for a racing game, but it was playable at least. It was also bound to the PS4 and its competitors, consoles which were showing their age for years. The fact that, at best, Nickelodeon Kart Racers 3 ran at around 20-ish frames per second, with insane amounts of frame pacing issues, on an Xbox Series console is an unforgivable mistake. The game was basically thrown out in the wild way before it was ready. To make matters worse, the framerate tanks during other specific sections.

Whenever your car turns into a boat, I would go as far as saying that the framerate drops to half of what it was achieving on land. Numbers that would make low-budget Nintendo 64 games perform like an RTX 4090 in comparison. Whenever too many cars gather up onscreen, the game also struggles to maintain a borderline passable framerate. Finally, the ultra fast-paced slime canal sections are a nightmare to deal with. Remember the videos of Sonic Boom: Ryse of Lyric‘s framerate tanking whenever you’d blast through a high-speed loop? It’s basically the same in Nickelodeon Kart Racers 3, with the added nuisance of having to deal with a bothersome QTE section as well.

Nickelodeon Kart Racers 3 Voice Acting

Sorry Zim. Your beautiful voice can’t save this game from being a disaster.

It’s not like the addition of voice acting made the game THAT much better. Sure, listening to Invader Zim screaming “dooooom” is delightful, but the problem lies in the frequency in which everyone opens their damn mouths. They just cannot shut up. Every drift, every boost, every item collection, your driver just has to shout out something. I was enamored with the inclusion of voice acting at first, but I got fed up with it after a while.

It’s a shame, because Nickelodeon Kart Racers 3: Slime Speedway is filled to the brim with content, just like its predecessor. It’s full of tracks, characters, vastly improved songs, and a ton of specific challenges that, in theory, would be a hit among completionists. Sadly, I just couldn’t enjoy them at all. The faster the game got, the more unplayable it became. I even tried to uninstall and reinstall the game to see if it was a one-time glitch. I also restarted my Xbox multiple times, hoping for a miracle. Apparently, I was just wasting my time. As of now, this game is broken.

Nickelodeon Kart Racers 3 Content

So much content. So much potential. What a waste.

I cannot believe I was actually excited for Nickelodeon Kart Racers 3. Honestly, I legitimately had high hopes for it. I thought that fan feedback and the resources offered by next-gen machines would let its developers craft a serious competitor to Mario Kart. Man, how disappointed I am. Nickelodeon Kart Racers 3 is worse than its predecessor in almost every single conceivable way. This game is in dire need of going back to development in order to be properly finished. It is, so far, the worst performing game I’ve played in a next-gen console, and possibly the most disappointing release of 2022.


Graphics: 5.0

It doesn’t matter that the game looks noticeably better than its predecessor when it suffers from large amount of textural loading issues and an utterly despicable framerate.

Gameplay: 3.5

The atrocious framerate renders Nickelodeon Kart Racers 3 nigh unplayable. Doubly so if you’re trying to drive a motorbike.

Sound: 7.0

Proper voice acting has finally been added to a Nickelodeon kart racer. Sadly, characters simply do not shut up, making their voiced inclusions sound tiresome after a while.

Fun Factor: 5.0

Nickelodeon Kart Racers 3 is worse than its predecessor in almost every single conceivable way. This game is in dire need of going back to development in order to be properly finished. It is, so far, the worst performing game I’ve played in a next-gen console.

Final Verdict: 5.0

Nickelodeon Kart Racers 3: Slime Speedway is available now on PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series S/X, PC and Nintendo Switch.

Reviewed on Xbox Series S.

A copy of Nickelodeon Kart Racers 3: Slime Speedway was provided by the publisher.