The latest riff on the stunt race archetype, Transform Races, is now live in GTA Online. This new DLC adds a whole new kind of racing event to the already long list of things to do in this game. However, the trade-off is that this week we're not getting any new vehicles or Adversary Modes.
Transform Races was first teased a while ago with nary a paragraph prior to the launch of Smuggler's Run, then it later got a separate announcement and trailer. For a mid-sized DLC, Rockstar has actually tried to hype it up quite a bit prior to release.
Now that it's here, Transform Races packs 15 new Rockstar-made race courses featuring various checkpoints which instantly turn the player vehicle into an altogether different ride, morphing you from car to plane to boat.
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This highly varied and somewhat chaotic manner of Transform Races is the appeal and draw of the new mode, which is less likely to attract hardcore racers and seems to be more of a "party game" like feature. We're sure GTA Online content creators are having a blast with this, for example.
Generally speaking, the courses are on average longer than most others. They're physically larger and take more time to complete, if only by a lick, to give the many vehicles crammed in any one course time to shine. That said, the transformations are fairly densely packed, so you'll need to be paying attention lest it catch you by surprise.
Then again, the sheer size of the transformation icons should prevent that from happening. The massive checkpoints share their circumference with the stunt pipe props. And yet, in spite of their size, a few courses have trick-jumps where simply going full throttle will see you overshoot the checkpoint and presumably fall to your untimely death. These "ah-ha!" jumps are not too frequent, but you should keep an eye out when to ease off.
The maps themselves are plenty varied in terms of the actual course itself, but almost all of them feature all vehicle types and the inclusion of aquatic vehicles somewhat limits placement. That and the physical spread of the courses results in many overlaps. While other racecourses differentiate themselves through setting, not just by street plan, the locales of these races are fairly similar with little by way of variety.
The 15 maps each feature their own vehicle selections:
- Gauntlet II - The stars of this show are the Molotok and the Phantom Wedge, kicking things off with quite the extreme race right off the bat. The Oppressor and more mundane motorcycles are also present.
- Get Wrecked - Set around the docks of Los Santos, this lap course is one of the more violent tracks on offer, with Havok, Mallard, Shotaro, Seashark and super cars all taking part in the carnage.
- Home Run - Set in some of Blaine County's less urbanized areas, home run will have you switching between the Havok, Mallard, Vortex, Seashark and super cars.
- Junk Yard - Set to evoke a post-apoc feel, part of this track goes through a scrapyard where you'll be racing with bikes, the Seashark and Mallard.
- McKenzie - A mountainous track found out in Blaine County kicks off with some off-road action on bikes, later transitioning to the Besra, Zentorno, Trophy Truck and Blazer Aqua.
- Mixed-Up - Winding through some of Los Santos' most memorable districts including the docks and LSIA, this high speed race features the Rocket Voltic, Besra, Ramp Buggy and super cars.
- Neon Mountain - No, this isn't a synthwave band, it's a race course in the new DLC, and one which has you jump on bikes, the Besra and Seashark.
- Plummet III - The main direction you'll be going in this race is down, which really ought to contradict the general objective in races to go fast, but hey, it's a stunt race. You'll be using sports cars, the Besra, Akuma, Havok and Blazer Aqua.
- Separation - This rapidly changing map will demand all of your attention if you want to survive, with the Rocket Voltic, Mallard, Havok and bikes all being thrown into the mix.
- Slalom - More of an obstacle course than a proper racetrack, Slalom will have you using the XA-21, Mallard and bikes to find your way through various tricky bends and turns.
- Slam Dunk - Target practice, but with vehicles. You'll also need to work on your aiming here beyond vying for first place, so make sure you know how to handle a Ruiner 2000, Besra, Whippet, Hauler, Blazer and bikes.
- Split-Personality - This track features a diverging course, meaning there are two possible paths to take, both of which feature different transformations. Joining the FMJ, Oppressor, Rocket Voltic, and Besra are BMX bikes and parachutes.
- The Dragon - Things can get pretty heated in this course set in Los Santos' urban sprawl. You'll be using Faggios (seriously), Molotoks, Vagners and compacts.
- Vinewood Thrills - Naturally, the large Vinewood sign is the main attraction in this track before you veer off to the coast. The vehicles on offer are the Seabreeze, Vagner, Marquis, Swift and bikes.
- Warped - Starting with a plummet, this course will have you transforming into vehicles of wildly varying speeds in quick succession, including the Ultralight, Rocket Voltic, Molotok, super cars and parachutes.
Later this fall, more Rockstar made maps will be joining these 15, further buffing out the variations of Transform Races, and likely together with those new maps, Rockstar will also release the Transform Race Creator, allowing you to craft your own tracks. In the meantime, these should be plenty, and the double RP and GTA$ promo on them until the 26th should give you more than enough reasons to get familiar with each and every one of them.
Even though we're not getting a new vehicle this week, the DLC itself isn't the only thing Rockstar is blessing us with. A huge selection of discounts is joined by a second double reward promo, applied to Lamar's contact missions.
Once again the magic number is 25%. Discounted are the LF-22 Starling, the V-65 Molotok, the Buckingham Alpha Z-1, the Grotti Visione, the Ocelot XA-21, engine upgrades, turbo upgrades, suspension upgrades and handling upgrades.
Transform Races is thought to be the last of this year's proper DLCs, with only thematic events, vehicles and Adversary Modes to follow.