Yep, I’m a sucker! Mattel pulled me into the Hot Wheels Rift Rally mixed-reality racing game. The Collector Edition of the game comes with an exclusive #McLaren Senna that will surely be sought-after in the years to come. and I knew that I had to have it. The metal body / metal base Senna comes with #Spectraflame Paint and #Real Riders on a special plinth inside with an acrylic cover — to the likes of some of the most exclusive Hot Wheels to date.
So far, the Collector Edition of the game (MSRP $149.99) has sold out on Mattel Creations and GameStop, but is still currently available through Mattel’s Rift Rally web site and on Amazon. The standard version of the game doesn’t come with the premium #McLaren Senna, but is $20 cheaper through retailers like Amazon. Since OTD focuses on Hot Wheels collecting, we are going to take an exclusive look and the Rift Rally Collector Edition: the game, and it’s exclusive vehicles.
The photo above should give you some idea as to the scale of the #Chameleon RC car that comes with the game. The black-on-black Chameleon with gold accents and red #Flame Logo comes in the Collector Edition whereas the Standard Edition has a white & black car. The car is called the Chameleon because the digital iteration of the car changes skins in the game with the swipe of a finger — allowing you to race as some of your favorite Hot Wheels original designs and the #McLaren Senna.
I received mine several days ago and filmed myself opening the box for the first time. You can view my unboxing below to see how the set comes boxed. Outside of the exclusive #McLaren Senna, I was unsure of what to expect. I really wanted to give you a look at not just the Senna, but the game as well, as I found the idea rather cool and couldn’t wait to explore the game with my 8- and 5-year-olds. Mattel is constantly trying to link the analog and digital worlds through play so I was intrigued to see how well this concept played out.
Hot Wheels Rift Rally: The Game
The game itself was designed by Velan Studios. The company actually designed a very similar concept for Nintendo called Mariokart Live: Home Circuit which plays exclusively on the Nintendo Switch. Hot Wheels Rift Rally can be played across Playstation 4 and 5 consoles and iOS devices like Apple’s iPad and iPhone. Despite having kids, I don’t own any video game consoles produced in the last 15 years, so I was glad to see this was compatible with my iPhone and that I could hand it off to the kids to play on their iPad. The really cool thing about this tech patented by Velan Studios is that you can play others head-to-head on other devices which using the same real-world, physical track.
The #Chameleon is a rad-looking vehicle. The combination of the all-terrain stance and black-on-black deco gives this particular version a very menacing looking. My only suggestion would have been to allow for a color-coated piece to snap on — or even have numbered decals — so you can tell the difference from your buddy’s in the real world.
A giant snorkel-like feature adorns the roof of the #Chameleon. That is where the 1080p camera is housed giving you a view on your device as if you’re in the driver’s seat. The game plays at scale-speed, so as you’re playing on your device, its as if you are traveling in hyperspeed. If you were to simply control the car with your device and watch it in real speed, you’d probably be mildly disappointed as this isn’t your typical RC car. In order to splay at scale-speed, you must feel as though you are inside the vehicle — something a traditional RC car doesn’t offer!
While you are in the #Chameleon — or #McLaren Senna, #Bone Shaker, or whatever car you chose to drive as — you are able to hone your skills through a variety of training courses, or you can take on a series of challenges that allow you to enhance your car digitally, giving your digital car upgrades.
I have really enjoyed playing in Campaign mode. In this, you set up your physical gates that come straight out of the box, and use them to create a mixed-reality track through whatever physical environment you choose. So far I have managed to created a somewhat vanilla track that meanders through my kitchen, however, I can see the creatively side to this where kids are probably already creating multi-level tracks across a variety of surfaces. The other mode is stunt mode. I have found this mode useful to train in as we as use it to chain together drifts, wheelies, and burnouts to net rewards.
If you watched my YouTube video above, you would have heard about my concern with toys and their “from-box-to-play time”. It took me all of 5 minutes to unbox it via my video, another 5 min or so to assemble the gates, a minute or two to download the free Rift Rally app, and another 10 minutes to connect my Chameleon to my home WiFi via my obnoxious-long home WiFi password that it at the bottom of my router. All-in-all, it took about 20 to 25 minutes to actually start playing which is great for any older kid or adult. I just made sure my younger kids weren’t around as there was a slight learning curve to understand what control-style worked best for me.
From there, I began building my track. The four gates have a printed signature on them that the camera reads in order and begins measuring out a real-world track in the digital world. You have actually adjust how visible this track is within the game — oh, and its orange!
As you can see, my track is nothing special but it serves a purpose to show just how easy the setup can be to still have fun. As I mentioned earlier, I am actually excited to see if kids and/or collectors film videos of some of the crazy tracks they’ve managed to build. I’m sure myself and the kids will eventually get to building one as the hot summer months in Phoenix are approaching. Please let me know if you have any questions about the game in the comments below and I’d be happy to answer anything I can!
Rift Rally Exclusive: McLaren Senna
As a Hot Wheels collector through and through, I knew I had to have the Hot Wheels #McLaren Senna that came exclusive to the Rift Rally Collector Edition. #Spectraflame Paint on an #Exotic supercar always looks great. Combine that with the black #Real Riders 5-Spoke Modern Wheels and a sweet deco by Hot Wheels Graphic Designer, Andrés Andrieu — his first premium deco, in fact! — and I am expecting this release to be highly coveted as time goes on.
The Hot Wheels #McLaren Senna is one of those cars that looks fast while sitting perfectly idle. I find myself liking this casting more and more as time goes on; and with #Spectraflame Paint, #Real Riders, and a deco like this, its safe to say I am not the only one taking more of a liking to the Senna. There is nothing like spectraflame to bring out the brilliant body lines of the Senna and the ones designed into this casting by former Hot Wheels designer, Ryu Asada.
I can honestly say that I wasn’t a huge fan of the Hot Wheels #McLaren Senna when it was first released in 2019. The basic versions lack definitive headlamp detail as they don’t have tampo’d headlight or the area surrounding them. It wasn’t until I had the #Hot Wheels iD release in-hand that I noticed the appeal of the casting/car with that patented #McLaren front-end. From there, we would go on to see the first premium release of the Senna in #Car Culture / Exotic Envy with metal body / metal chassis, and full deco, in a very cool dove gray paint scheme. Despite not being a huge fan of the casting from the beginning, I have managed to build a collection of 9 of the 10 releases thus far. I am still searching for the Car Culture 2-Pack one.
Out of this lineup, you can see how “next-level” the Rift Rally #McLaren Senna truly is, and why I think it will be a coveted item in the near future. The casting itself doesn’t have a huge following yet — hence why the game probably hasn’t completely sold out at the time of writing this article. For those that “just want the Senna”, collectors have already commented on the steep price of $150 to pay if that is the only item you want from the Rift Rally Collector Edition. I get it, you collect diecast — we all do. Some pieces like this are special because they take a little extra effort (and/or money) to obtain, but the value is seen when you can put this one in your collection and watch it shine amongst its friends.
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