Pod racing. It’s one of the most memorable parts of Star Wars: Episode I, and now you can experience it whenever you want from the comfort of your own home. The original Episode 1: Racer was released on the PC and N64 as a tie-in to The Phantom Menace, and it received a sequel on the PlayStation 2 titled Racer Revenge, which was ported to the PS4 in 2016. Then, in March 2020, game publisher Aspyr announced a remaster of Episode 1: Racer for the PlayStation 4 and Nintendo Switch.
The journey to remaster Racer hasn’t been easy though – the game was delayed twice. Originally slated for a May 12 release, on April 28 the official Aspyr Twitter account tweeted:
We have an update on the launch of Star Wars Episode l: Racer. Unfortunately, we’ve just learned that we will have to delay the game on PlayStation 4 until May 26. The game will still launch on May 12 for Nintendo Switch.
— Aspyr (@AspyrMedia) April 28, 2020
Then, on May 11, one day before the scheduled Switch release, another announcement:
We are so excited to share Star Wars Episode l: Racer with you soon! Unfortunately, due to the ongoing work from home requirements across the industry, the game will be further delayed on Nintendo Switch and PlayStation 4. We’ll be back with an update as soon as possible.
— Aspyr (@AspyrMedia) May 11, 2020
The game was delayed indefinitely, and fans were understandably disappointed. It seemed we wouldn’t be getting our pod racing sim remaster. Then, one fateful tweet changed it all.
ATTN Star Wars Episode l: Racer Fans!!!
We are slated to release on both Nintendo Switch and PS4 on June 23rd.
Thank you for your continued support, .gifs, and kind comments as we’ve worked on this release.
🏁We’ll see you on the racetracks.🏁 pic.twitter.com/9hRgvzqvpZ
— Aspyr (@AspyrMedia) June 16, 2020
Racer features music from the Star Wars soundtrack, 25 playable characters, race tracks on eight different planets, and split-screen couch co-op.
“It’s a great game and it has emotional resonance,” said producer James Vicari in an interview with StarWars.com. “We really believe in reuniting fans with something they cherished, or connecting a new audience with something they may have missed.”
Star Wars Episode 1: Racer is $15 on both the Nintendo Switch and PlayStation 4. You can check it out here.