Rayman Kart could easily be a derivative cart racing game that simply slapped the Rayman character on a set of wheels but Gameloft has put a lot of time to make this racing game a cut above the rest. Although the game is not 3D, Kart's visuals maintain a frenetic pace to give you a sense of speed without having to keep an eye on a speedometer. In fact, there is no indicator as to how fast you are going other than the landscape zipping by you. When you go over a turbo pad or use a speed boost power up little lines like entering hyperspeed in Star Wars will appear to show just how fast you are.
Besides getting the visuals done, Kart is also a fun game. This isn't one of those racing games where if you fall behind the game is automatically over. On the contrary, by stringing the use of some power ups and rolling over some turbo pads you can easily rocket to the head of the pack from last place. I was never frustrated, as I often am in Need for Speed, with being lapped or chasing the race leader in futility. Every character has a chance to win. The game does have a little drawback. If you happen to be the leader in the race, expect every and all offensive power ups (nuclear missiles, tornadoes, etc.) be used against you on your last lap before victory. Sometimes if enough of those are used, the second place racer can actually catch up and steal the race a few meters away from the finish line.
Kart is structured around its eight different worlds. You initially have access to a single racer and world. From there, you can complete an easy race, a hard race, a time trial and a something. Completing each stage on the track will open up other worlds and racers for you to use. You then move on the world map to the next place or you can stay at the same world and finish the rest of the stages. The game is easy enough that you'll maintain a good pace in unlocking these features.
Instead of giving a simple engine growl throughout the entire race, Gameloft has included a different soundtrack with every world. This was something unexpected and I liked the catchy tunes so much that unlocking the all the worlds to hear them was one of the things I aimed for during play.
Kart has enough unlockable features to entice the hard core gamer but it's easy enough that novices will be able to win races. As a result of great game design, the difficulty curve is exactly where it should be. This isn't a shameless plug of the Rayman franchise but an actual cart racing title that lives and breathes the whimsical world of Rayman. If you like racing or Rayman, this ought to be on your phone.