It was okay in the grassland. The soundtrack runs alongside and sometimes sounds as if an accelerating engine were part of the musical ensemble. But in the world of ice, a sugar-sweet voice keeps singing softly: “You suck at parking.” Which is also true when you let the little vehicle tip over a cliff for the hundredth time because you missed the angle when you jumped again, with which you could have cut half the level short – if you can do it.
It’s not enough to park the car safely in the marked parking area. Rather, I would also like to do it in such a way that I end up in one of the top places in the global rankings. But desire and reality, that’s the difference that this lovely voice is describing again and again very gently with its statement of my parking skills.
Now you don’t have to indulge in this perfectionism. You can also just park your cars in all three parking spaces within the time limit (if one stops, you’ll be moved to the next), do the same in the next level and so on until you’ve scraped together enough points to unlock more levels. You don’t even have to solve all the existing tasks for this, but can skip particularly tricky challenges.
An overworld consisting of islands serves as a menu, whereby the successful parking described above gives access to further islands. In this overworld you will also find particularly demanding master levels, which are much more demanding early on than those necessary for regular progress. There, at the latest, not only ramps, falling parts of the route and electric crash barriers complicate reaching the parking lots, but also gigantic fans, magnets, running out of petrol and hammers swinging across the street, thanks to which I was sometimes glad to have at least one of the two, three or more reach storage areas. Not to mention other road users, snappy police cars and remote-controlled missiles.
Doesn’t hurt motivation at all! One push of a button and you start all over again. Another push of a button and you let the time continue, but sit in the next vehicle while the previous one is still rolling. All of this in the blink of an eye – much faster than in Trackmania and therefore so damn time-consuming because you’re always doing the next run before you remember to stop.
Oh, and because the comparison with Trackmania now comes to mind: the fast two-door models are not controlled as precisely as there. Sometimes quicker than I’d like, you’ll smack a useless donut into the tarmac, or crank the steering that crucial bit too far, sending you whizzing across a ramp instead of straight ahead.
It’s all the more regrettable that you can’t put the steering on the digit cross. Just like in Trackmania, I find this an idea more precise. Of course, you can set it up in the same way via Steam, I did and have felt a little more comfortable since then. But that should also be possible on Xbox. And speaking of Steam: In contrast to the demo, You Suck at Parking now runs at a stable 60 frames per second and only occasional frametime deviations (at least that’s what it feels like) on Valve’s handheld. In fact, I played it almost exclusively on mobile.
Now if only my carts wouldn’t disappear behind a mountain now and then; This makes it extremely difficult to reach some parking areas. Especially if I didn’t have to find my way across five islands to return to previous levels. That could have been solved better in a game like this.
The fast and uncomplicated improvement is the decisive kick here! Because what you can find in the way of abbreviations and twisted jumps – only to find out afterwards that the top ten in the world are another five seconds faster. Well, and if it hadn’t taken ten hours until I finally came up with the crucial trick, without which, with a few exceptions, not a single best time is possible. Of course you can forget that I reveal it here!
Well, fine: It’s already written a little hidden a few paragraphs above. But that has to be enough.
The game is far from enough at this point; there is also an online mode in which up to eight participants drive to all eight or more parking spaces as quickly as possible and of course get in each other’s way. Is less stressful than it sounds! Rather, it’s so much fun that for a change I like to throw myself into the 20 levels of the current map rotation to let the experts show me there.
You suck at parking – conclusion
You Suck at Parking (a little tip: don’t google it at work) had already grabbed me with the demo available on Steam, because the tricky approach to the parking lot is not only a refreshing contrast to conventional racing games, but also feels great except for the little things and in a particularly stubborn way spurs on that one-goes-impulse. With the mastering of the sometimes nasty, tricky course, the sweaty optimization of the best time and the brisk online tussle, the whole thing is also pleasantly varied – and for Game Pass subscribers it is even included in the current range. So be sure to take a look at this unusual search for a parking space!
You Suck at Parking – Pros and Cons
- Dozens of varied levels in different environments
- Relatively relaxed unlocking of all levels
- Motivating improvement in a worldwide online comparison
- Very fast reboot
- Entertaining online mode for up to eight players
- Amusing, upbeat soundtrack
- Terribly awkward selection of previous levels
- Control is not always 100% precise and cannot be completely freely assigned