Switchcars is a vehicular roguelike arcade set in a broken spacetime. Escape alien beasts over procedural environments, using more than 1,000 vehicles. You'll crash or run out of fuel, but that's okay - you'll switch to another vehicle. All you need to do is reach the year 2055. In theory!
User reviews:
Very Positive (65 reviews) - 92% of the 65 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date: Mar 4, 2016

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Early Access Game

Get instant access and start playing; get involved with this game as it develops.

Note: This Early Access game is not complete and may or may not change further. If you are not excited to play this game in its current state, then you should wait to see if the game progresses further in development. Learn more

What the developers have to say:

Why Early Access?

“Releasing Switchcars on Early Access has been in the plans for nearly two years. In contrast to releasing the game too early, that time was spent getting it as feature complete as possible. The game's got a ton of content, it's running quite smoothly, and it's very replayable. However, it is still work in progress. As I've been the sole developer for the most part, doing all the graphics, audio, business, promotion and nearly all the code, things take time. So I'm doing Early Access for a couple of reasons: 

  • Switchcars is in late alpha phase and at this point community feedback is very welcome for testing, balancing, suggestions, helping prioritization of upcoming features and fixes, and so on. 
  • Scope of the game was designed from the start with regular updates in mind, so it's got a lot of room for growth.
  • Some of you have been patiently waiting for Switchcars for a long time and this is a great way to make the game available to you while it's still in development.
  • After all these years, earning some revenue would sure help get better sleep at night! It would also potentially allow hiring additional developers and further expansion of the game.

Approximately how long will this game be in Early Access?

“Depending on community involvement and feedback, completing Switchcars might take anywhere from several months up to two years. Switchcars has a lot of potential for expansion and I would like to push it to its limits, as long as development is financially reasonable and redoing the whole game from scratch isn't necessary to keep adding new features.”

How is the full version planned to differ from the Early Access version?

“Currently considered future updates include more powerups, more music, more types of lanes, more backgrounds, more animals, Steam features such as leaderboard and achievements, perhaps new game modes (some have been in the plans for a long time), and of course, hundreds of new vehicles (it's already got a thousand)!

Depending on the revenue and feedback, the scope of the game might change as well.”

What is the current state of the Early Access version?

“Most of the planned core features and content are currently present in Switchcars. It is highly replayable, quite stable and has been thoroughly balanced over the years.

It isn't complete yet however. Switchcars is in late alpha and certain technical issues are possible, such as image being stretched or cut on screens not supporting 16:10 aspect ratio. More balancing may also be needed, and some relatively obvious additions to the game still might require a lot of time to implement.

Steam features, such as achievements and trading cards, haven't been implemented yet. Please also keep in mind that save files might need to be reset at some points during the Early Access, as the game keeps changing with every update.”

Will the game be priced differently during and after Early Access?

“The price will not change when the game leaves Early Access, apart from occasional special offers like the release week or Steam sales.”

How are you planning on involving the Community in your development process?

“Feedback from players on occasional game festivals in the past has played a big role in development decisions up to this point, so I'm counting on community for feature suggestions, balancing suggestions, vehicle and other content suggestions, bug reports, and to just generally help decide what to prioritize for the next update.

Please note that due to Switchcars being made by a single person, only so many suggestions can make their way into the updates. That said, all the suggestions will be taken into consideration, and if the revenue allows hiring more developers to share the load, so will increase the development speed.”
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Recent updates View all (14)

October 22

Update 13 - Resolution options, Free Roam themes, improved input system and more!

Hey all!

Before diving into update details, I'd like to announce that I was temporarily joined by a programmer and a friend of mine, Damir Veapi, in solving some technical issues in Switchcars. He already did some notable work prior to release, but also in the previous update 12 and now, 13.

His involvement with the project likely won't be long, but it's very meaningful already. In this update, and throughout next several ones our aim is to make the game as stable as possible, so that it will be able to leave alpha and have its development continue in a more mature beta state.

This also means that, besides getting more stable, the game might get some awesome new features! I'm not going to announce them just yet - first we want to make sure they work.

Now onto the update!

Resolution options:

Yes! The game now lets you run it at your monitor's native resolution, such as 1920x1080. Alternatively, you can change it to 1280x800 or 1366x768.

You won't need to worry about the settings anymore. When the game is initially started it will automatically set up the resolution to the highest possible on your screen. From that point on you can change it if you want.

Changing resolution and fullscreen mode is now applied instantly and no longer requires you to manually restart the game (for now this only works on Windows, and is being worked on for Linux).

The underlying method works the same as the Fit Screen option did previously, so you might notice the same slight visual glitches at higher resolutions. This will be fixed in one of the following updates!

For some people who have been experiencing a crash on startup due to incompatible resolution, this update should have that fixed.

As this is a new system and is likely to stay as the final one, please let me know if you experience any issues! For now the game also supports 4k and 8k resolutions, so if anyone has such screens please let me know if the game works on them (the highest resolution I was able to test on was HD).

Free Roam themes:

Thanks to a forum suggestion Free Roam now features 12 environment themes to choose from, such as Railway, Arctic, Space, Alien World and City.

If you would like to peacefully explore all the trains, or spaceships in a specific year, now you can.

A theme called Mixed uses the same world generator settings as The Run and Hardcore do, allowing you to practice without time pressure or aliens on your back.

Of course, for some themes to become available you will first need to unlock specific lanes.

In other Free Roam news, if you would like to keep driving in the current segment without changes, Free Roam now lets you go to the left, infinitely! It also increases the powerup deck size to 4.

Improved input system:

When the game is started, if there are joystick devices available, the game will now prompt you to click a button on your preferred device before receiving input from other devices.

We hope this will fix all the crashes and rogue inputs some people experienced. For example those who have steering wheels had to unplug them in order to play Switchcars, because they were sending constant input that couldn't be stopped. That is no longer the case.

More work remains to be done in one of the following updates, so that gamepads using DirectInput will be properly remappable.

If you experience any issues, please let me know! Details on what exact gaming devices you have plugged in would be very appreciated!

Fixed savegame corruption:

There were very few reports of a savegame being corrupted in the former months, however the cause of that should now be fixed, and preventively the game also creates a backup savegame file, and reverts to it in case of savegame failure. Losing a savegame due to corruption should no longer happen.

Slight traffic improvement:

Traffic generation was modified, resulting in slightly increased traffic density, and less situations in which you cannot find a vehicle.

The build year tolerance was also tightened, so traffic is generally more bound to the era you are in. You're less likely to find oldtimers in running traffic, especially in later years.

The change also results in much improved performance, which might remove previously reported stuttering on slow machines (please let me know if the change is noticeable on your system!).

Difficulty changes:

Aliens in the alien world will now be attracted proportionally to the time you've spent there. This means that going through it quickly is likely not going to add more aliens on your tail, but spending a long time there will.

Difficulty in The Run has been increased in the higher stages and years.

Like Free Roam, Hardcore too now has the powerup deck size increased to 4.

More useful powerups:

Due to another forum suggestion, contextual powerups spawning has been greatly improved (e.g. Rail Wheels, Skis). These powerups are now given mostly when truly needed, and are also giving more boost.

Many other propulsion-related powerups were beefed up too. Installing any kind of engine on very slow vehicles will immediately make them faster. Many bugs related to installing powerups were fixed (see full changelog for details).

Some more highlights:

- Animals can now be revived by getting hit by a lightning!
- Aliens now jump when you point rocket thrust or ion thrust at them.
- There is now an option to reset controls to default.

Full changelog:

As always, all changes are listed below, but also can be read from within Switchcars and its changelog viewer!


- Added Free Roam Themes
- Player can now choose an environment theme in Free Roam
- There are 12 themes, including Railway, Arctic, Space, Alien World, City
- Roads are no longer always present, except in "Mixed + Highway" and "Freeway" themes
- Theme called "Mixed" generates the world as The Run or Hardcore do, which can be useful for training
- Some themes are locked until the player first unlocks the needed lanes (e.g. Space, Alien World)
- Player can move left in Free Roam now (however the segment will never change)
- Traffic density was improved (and thus slightly increased)
- Oldtimers are much rarer in traffic now as production year tolerance was changed
- Improved contextual powerups system
- Rail Wheels, Hull, Skis and Medikit are now more likely to appear when actually needed
- Reduced contextual powerups spam
- Animals can be revived by getting electrocuted (50% chance)
- Alien spawn rate in alien world increases with time spent there
- Spending a few seconds there is unlikely to attract aliens now
- There cannot be more than 8 aliens attracted on alien world
- Increased difficulty on The Run, in later years and stages
- Free Roam and Hardcore now allow keeping 4 powerups in a deck
- Improved acceleration and speed caps on all power source powerups
- They are far more useful on slow vehicles now
- Increased minimum top speed on Hull and Skis, also making them more useful
- Increased Spoiler speed cap
- Rocket and Ion Drive thrusts make aliens jump if pointed at them
- Reduced UFO health by 1/2


- Updated car types to a class-based standard
- Mid-size Car was formerly Sedan
- Full-size Car was formerly Estate Car
- Subcompact Car was formerly Hatchback
- City Car was formerly Minicar


- Resolution options
- By default, game will start with the highest available resolution
- Resolutions other than 1280x800 and 1366x768 may create slight visual glitches for now
- Changing resolution and fullscreen mode no longer requires a manual restart (thanks to Damir)
- Resolution and fullscreen options will be grayed out when unavailable (e.g. ingame)
- It's not possible to change resolution in windowed mode
- Added option to reset keys to default (thanks to Damir)
- Added intro screen for primary input device assignment
- Tutorial tips for powerup swap and vehicle lock now appear later to reduce clutter
- Tutorial tips for using powerups on vehicles no longer pause the game
- Subnotes in changelog are now darker for clarity


- Savegame will now ignore missing vehicles, instead of crashing, for future use (Damir)

Major Bugs:

- Prevented unused joystick devices from sending input (Damir)
- Should stop all kinds of crashes and weird behaviour that some people experienced
- Prevented rare savegame corruption (Damir)
- Optimized traffic spawning, improved performance

Minor Bugs:

- Attempted fix at electric vehicle's top speed dropping to 60 when switching vehicles sometimes
- Fixed prop planes not getting a jet engine when having Wings installed
- Fixed nonpowered aerial and naval vehicles not working when having a power source installed
- Fixed non-hover thruster powered vehicles being able to hover on Earth after being used on a dwarf planet
- Fixed Nuclear Reactor disabling helicopter flight
- Fixed Refuel powerup not always fully refueling vehicles
- Fixed Helicopter Rotor not becoming the primary propulsion on vehicles it can't lift
- Fixed Helicopter Rotor not working on nonpowered VTOL vehicles
- Fixed lightning setting an electric vehicle on fire, when it had room to charge
- Fixed a bug with some internal timers running while the game is paused
- Fixed replacement alien taking too long to spawn sometimes
- Tweaked a few non-fitting vehicle production years
- Fixed alien producing metal crash sound when hitting animals
- Fixed "vehicle in range" indicator trying to make sound in space
- Fixed Marina missing "Deep liquid" description in database
- Fixed one Half-track using rubber sound for its tracks
- Fixed some faulty pixels on two vehicles


- A few other tweaks


That's it for this update, and as always if you have any questions, comments or suggestions, feel free to post on the forum!

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September 24

Update 12 - 1000+ redesigned vehicles, starting years 2040-2054, and a ton of more improvements!

Hey everyone!

The new update is up, bringing us the biggest Switchcars changelog yet, not only since launch, but since Switchcars development began in 2012!

The shear amount of general small changes is enormous. Here are some highlights, although I recommend reading the full notes too.

Note: this update will reset the "config.ini" file which contains your graphics, controls and other settings.

1000+ redesigned vehicles:

The update is mainly focused on vehicles. They were all revised, and most of their graphics updated for better consistency, looks and purpose clarity. Some received minor graphical changes, whereas others complete overhauls.

For example, nearly all aircraft and future vehicles were remade from scratch, looking closer to how they might look in real life. Magnet and plasma vehicles are now easily distinguishable with featuring cyan or light purple glowing pads underneath, respectively. Car designs now more closely resemble the era they come from, particularly in the 1970s-2010s range.

Redesign also includes replacing some redundant vehicles with completely new ones (e.g. two Tiltrotor VTOLs have become Maritime Helicopter and Light Attack Helicopter), and there are many non-visual modifications to vehicles as well. Trains, trolleybuses, mining vehicles, animals and some others have been made much more practical on their native lanes.

The color palette of vehicles was improved, their shadows now conform to the size of the vehicle, and so do glows from the lights underneath if they have any.

Starting years 2040-2054:

Due to popular demand, you can now choose starting years later than 2040, for any game mode. However, they will have to be unlocked first, the same way the years were unlocked up to that point.

Improved vehicle lights:

Headlights have been redesigned, now also featuring more types (there are tungsten, LED and the rare yellow ones). Neon light modifications now come in different colors!

Gameplay balancing:

As with every update, there are tons of small gameplay tweaks. For example, Alien Younglings will be hurt more when using Teleport, but they (together with any other living beings) heal faster when on Alien Ooze lane type.

Magnet cars now appear earlier, giving players more reason to use them. Self-driving Cars and Taxis can provide a Manual Control powerup, giving players choice to drive manually or not.

Various powerups were tweaked (see changelog for details), as well as their spawn rate. Hardcore and Free Roam spawn more powerups now.

Difficulty tweaks:

Changes were also made to alien spawning and stopping power, resulting in subtle differences in The Run difficulty, and considerable increase in Hardcore difficulty.

Player character now suffers considerable friction when rolling, depending on the material type, thus moving long distances with grappling hook only is no longer viable.

Improved end screen:

When beating the game, the end message will be picked randomly from a pool of many, revealing various final musings of the main character.

End screen now also lists the game mode and starting year at the bottom, providing more complete information about the run.

Bug fixes:

There were many bugs fixed (see changelog for details), including missing light glow in caves from previous update, as well as an old crash that would occur if you alt-tab while the game is loading.

Full changelog:

The game features an ingame changelog viewer now, so you might want to read the full notes there. Alternatively, they are all listed below:


- Human rolling is now affected by terrain friction
- Reduced aliens' stopping power when touching player
- Years 2040-2054 are now available as starting years (but need to be unlocked first)
- Alien Ooze now heals living beings, including aliens
- Increased alien spawn rate in Hardcore
- Increased speed of various vehicles, previously not very useful
- Trains, Trams, Trolleybuses and Cable Cars
- Horses, Elephants and Cows
- All mining vehicles, including Speeders and Handcars
- Submarines, Solar Boats, Swamp Buggies
- Battle Spacecraft
- Rebalanced production years of all future vehicles (2016+)
- Magnet vehicles appear earlier, giving players more of a reason to use them
- Slightly increased chance of repeated railway biomes
- Increased powerup spawn rate in Hardcore and Free Roam
- Increased Teleport damage on living beings
- Shortened Shield charge time from 0.5 to 0.4 seconds
- Self-driving cars and taxis can give Manual Control now
- Rockets can give Disposable Power Bank (simulating the second stage rocket)
- Reduced underwater friction on submarines
- Reduced friction of magnet roads
- Reduced fuel consumption of Nuclear Reactor
- Reduced acceleration penalty of Armor powerup
- Reduced speed penalty of Offroad Wheels
- Tweaked powerup spawn rate per type balancing
- Increased Medikit spawn rate (for use on animals)
- Lightning strike can no longer set an electric vehicle on fire, if it had room for charging
- Using Shield will resurface player, if underwater
- Refuel and Repair stations blow up if standing on them for too long
- Light rain is no longer accompanied by Storm Clouds
- Bright HDR flash when exiting caves is less intensive if the weather is bad (e.g. fog, rain)


- Redesigned 1000+ vehicles
- Improved visual consistency, aesthetics and purpose clarity of all vehicles
- Includes minor tweaks as well as complete graphical overhauls (e.g. all aircraft and future vehicles)
- Car design better reflects the era it comes from
- Magnet vehicles are easily distinguishable by cyan glowing pads underneath
- Plasma vehicles are easily distinguishable by light purple glowing pads underneath
- Guns are more noticeable on most armed vehicles
- Most vehicles with offroad wheels are now visually lifted off the ground
- Matched emergency light position with the light effect on all vehicles
- Repurposed or modified some vehicles
- Changed Plough to Dump Trailer
- Changed Flying Taxi to Flying Car
- Changed one Rocket Train to Jet Train
- Changed one Tiltrotor VTOL to Maritime Helicopter
- Changed one Tiltrotor VTOL to Light Attack Helicopter
- Changed one Tandemrotor Helicopter to Transport Helicopter
- Changed one Mobile Radar to Radar Truck
- Changed one Handcar to Speeder
- Changed one Gyroglider to Gyrocopter
- Changed one Rocket Plane to Spaceplane
- Changed one VTOL Attack Plane to Bomber
- Changed one Private Jet to Regional Airliner
- Changed one Sedan to Hatchback
- Changed one Aerobatics Plane to Aerobatics Biplane
- Modified UFO to be more useful, less reusable
- Modified Battle Spacecrafts to have Laser instead of Rocket Launcher
- Modified flying cars to not be able to float on water (except the Flying Float Car)
- Modified one IFV to have Machine Gun instead of Cannon
- Modified one Armored Car to have Cannon instead of Machine Gun
- Modified unarmed GEV to have propeller propulsion
- Modified one Limousine to be electric instead of a hybrid
- Modified one LCV to be a hybrid instead of electric
- Modified one Minicar to be self-driving
- Modified one Self-driving Car to not be self-driving
- Modified one Snow Coach to use tracks instead of skis
- Modified one Snow Coach to use wheels instead of skis
- Modified one Icebreaker to have nuclear power source
- Updated some vehicle type names
- Improved vehicle paintjob color palette on all vehicles
- Updated all vehicle colliders [WIP]


- Emergency vehicles can spawn as being on duty (speeding with siren on)
- Traffic emergency vehicles now have siren glow too
- Long vehicles now have long shadows (or glows)
- Neon lights now come in varying colors
- Improved headlight graphics
- There are three types of headlights now, tungsten, LED and yellow (rare)
- Added stability control to vehicles entering production after 2011 (no tire screeching on them)
- Added alternate explosion animation
- Supercar racetrack layer now includes various kinds of sports cars and bikes (like an open track)
- Underground environment is now lit by rocket and ion drive thrusts
- Plasma hovercrafts are now lifted off the ground
- Removed headlights usage from light rain weather
- Electric road vehicles now cast blue brakelight spotlight, rather than red
- Dirt no longer sticks to wheels of most vehicles
- Installing Electric Motor to a light prop vehicle will change its sound to electric prop
- Improved Laser graphics
- Added a downwards arrow to an Underground Passage prop
- Salt flats now generate dirt


- Win screen now gives a random message every time (there are 13 currently)
- Game mode and starting year are now listed at the bottom of the gameover screen
- Tweaked lose screen message formatting
- Precisely specified what Neon Light does, in database
- Recharging icon and glow are now blue instead of cyan
- Cripsier font in changelog viewer (thanks to Damir)


- Switched to a newer version of SDL2 (Damir)
- Automatic generation of config file when starting the game for the first time (Damir)
- Added available system resolutions readout, for future use in options (Damir)
- Optimized terrain particle VFX texture usage


- Timer no longer starts counting after pressing any button, but when player starts moving
- If browsing database or options on end screen, aliens will go away and stop spamming

Major Bugs:

- Fixed a crash with alt-tabbing during loading (Damir)

Minor Bugs:

- Fixed engine deceleration sound not playing when it should sometimes
- Fixed biome-repeating becoming more likely the more it repeats
- Fixed new aliens not able to spawn if existing ones have repositioned recently
- Fixed cave lighting glow from previous update not working
- Fixed electric submarines getting damaged by water
- Fixed Manual Control not giving control to player sometimes when used on AI vehicles
- Improved teleports not being triggered when going through them very fast
- Prevented self-driving magnet cars from swerving off magnet roads for powerups and teleports
- Fixed smoke not appearing above objects on fire
- Fixed installing Swimming Belt disabling Drill ability
- Fixed installing Wings to a GEV not making it able to fly
- Fixed Shield sound not stopping when switching vehicles
- Fixed two Snow Coaches not spawning on Snowy Highway and Ice
- Fixed rain sound not stopping immediately when using Radar
- Fixed broken vehicle getting unbroken when installing a powerup
- Fixed dead animal getting up in inventory after using Repair
- Fixed plasma vehicles playing metal friction sound when braking
- Fixed Alien Youngling using wrong braking sound when not controlled by player
- Fixed dirt not being applied to an entire vehicle sometimes
- Fixed beating Hardcore changing the starting year
- Fixed Disposable Power Bank not giving power to vehicles that were originally non-powered
- Fixed missing "too scared to go there" alert when going left
- Fixed presence sound on hovercrafts not being looped properly
- Fixed clock sound being heard before the timer starts counting
- Fixed player being able to go left in the first tutorial resulting in cars disappearing
- Fixed installing Solar Panel not setting up the correct top speed
- Fixed player character swimming in Sea Ice, which is shallow
- Fixed a pixel-gap at the bottom of the screen in 16:9, visible when raining on gameover screen


That's it for this update, and as always if you have any questions, comments or suggestions, feel free to post on the forum!

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“Absolutely a game that I needed to write about right now”
PC Gamer

“It spells a damn good game, with a high level of replayability”
Final Boss Fight

About This Game

Switchcars is a vehicular roguelike arcade set in a broken spacetime. Escape alien beasts through procedural environments, using more than 1,000 vehicles. All you need to do is reach the year 2055. In theory.

You are probably not going to make it. Not the first time, not the second, but perhaps the 100th? Every round is different, and you'll get better over time, so crack your knuckles and show those alien beasts who's the master of vehicular arts, the ultimate escaper of Earth, the unintended interdimensional time traveler scientist-man of pure vehiculative efficiency! Or, get struck by a bus and try again.


  • New kind of gameplay

    Switch instantly between vehicles in your inventory to move as fast as possible.

  • 1,000 vehicles

    Nearly all kinds you can imagine, all driveable, with different behaviors. There's a bit more than a thousand actually, and more is yet to come.

  • Procedural environments

    Forests, streets, ice plains, outer space, train yards, minefields - Around 100 unlockable types of terrain, diverse traffic to dodge, as well as more than 150 static scenery objects.

  • Time travel

    The playable years are 1950 to 2055. The point in time dictates available vehicles and environments, but also difficulty. Can you make it to the end and get an interstellar spaceship, the ultimate vehicle?

  • Vehicle upgrades

    Rocket-propelled motorcycle with caterpillar tracks and machine guns? Yes! There are 40 powerups that can be used on any vehicle, altering their performance and appearance.

  • Content browser

    Browse vehicles, lanes or powerups you've unlocked. See how many you haven't seen yet.

  • Immensely replayable

    Due to agile gameplay and procedural nature of the game, the rounds are always different, relatively short and unpredictable - in classic action roguelike manner.

  • High fidelity

    Crunchy crashes, distinctive and colorful pixel art, highly detailed sound and original adaptive music.

System Requirements

SteamOS + Linux
    • Processor: 2.5 GHz
    • Memory: 2048 MB RAM
    • Graphics: GeForce 6600 GT / Ati Radeon 9800XT
    • Storage: 100 MB available space
    • Processor: 2.5 GHz
    • Memory: 2048 MB RAM
    • Graphics: GeForce 6600 GT / Ati Radeon 9800XT
    • Storage: 100 MB available space
Customer reviews
Customer Review system updated Sept. 2016! Learn more
Very Positive (65 reviews)
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46 reviews match the filters above ( Positive)
Most Helpful Reviews  Overall
67 of 79 people (85%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
3.3 hrs on record
Early Access Review
Posted: March 5
Giant alien worm thing chasing you? Check. Hundreds of vehicles to use in your escape? Check. Loads of stuff to keep you interested? Eh.

Switchcars is a vehicular rogue-like that feels a bit like a not-so-endless runner game. You begin as early as the 1950s (by default you start in the 80s), your goal is to drive your way to the 2050s while running away from what is best described as a giant, green killer whale. After three hours of playing what are generally five minute runs, I’m nowhere near beating the game but I’m also nowhere near giving up. Switchcars is pretty simple, because of this, you’re either going to like the game or hate it.

Full Disclosure: A review copy was provided by the developer.

The idea of being a tiny little human running away from a giant alien is a daunting one. Thankfully, Switchcars gives you just enough help to make this task possible, even if it is incredibly difficult. For the most part, you won’t even find yourself dead at the hands of the alien, you’ll find yourself splattered on one end of a high speed train or car. That’s what Switchcars really comes down to, switching between different vehicles.

You can store up to three vehicles (that includes whatever you’re using) so providing you’re able to keep three good vehicles on you and you don’t crash too often then it’s actually quite easy to stay far enough ahead of the alien to reach safe zones (placed at the end of each one of ten stages a run consists of) with ease. Sadly that only happens in an ideal world, one filled with vehicles that are all super awesome.

The game currently has one thousand vehicles in it spread out across the years, many of them with names. Ranging from tractors to racing cars, paragliders to jets and canoes to submarines. Of course, not all of these vehicles are as fast as a race car, or as armoured as a tank and so you’ll often have to make do with something slower or weaker. These are the really challenging parts of the game, the parts where you’ll need to quickly switch between vehicles in order to keep going and stay ahead of the alien.

Every vehicle has a fuel and health bar and some vehicles also have abilities. Fuel is obviously drained by simply using the vehicle but there are refuelling points along the way, as well as repair points. The health bar of a vehicle is drained by, you guessed it, damaging the vehicle which happens when you crash into something or drive into lava, that kind of thing. For the most part, a vehicle’s ability is just a horn (or siren for emergency vehicles), it’s the more specialised vehicles that have the ‘cool’ abilities, like fighter jets with missile launchers or submarines with the ability to go underwater. Offensive abilities can be used to blow up obstacles in your path and even kill the alien chasing you (not sure what effect that has on a run since I haven’t pulled this off yet.)

Speaking of paths, Switchcars has nine different lanes for you to drive, fly, or swim through. Six of these lanes are ground lanes, ranging from grassland to water canals to train tracks and the other three are for airborne vehicles. Airborne vehicles can travel along ground lanes too but generally there’s more traffic, and therefore more to crash into, down there. There are a hell of a lot of different lane types and most of the vehicles are only suited to one or two different types of lane so you’ll need to change up your vehicle roster accordingly when you enter a new area with new lanes.

Now, though it does sound like it’s all about the vehicles, you’re actually able to get around on foot rather well thanks to a grappling hook. It’s pretty effective at pulling you towards stationary objects and speeding you up but it’s most effective when you pull yourself towards something going incredibly fast, such as a race car. Not only will you be able to catch up to a vehicle you otherwise wouldn’t have been able to, it’ll also pull you through the level a helluva lot quicker than you would have been going, even if you were in the vehicle you’re after.

Before I move on to the negatives, I’ll quickly mention powerups, of which there are forty in the game. The powerups are dotted throughout the levels and range from machine gun turret attachments to helium balloons that’ll let you fly even the largest of cars. As long as the powerups don’t conflict, i.e. you can’t use two ability powerups, you can use as many of them as you want and there doesn’t seem to be a limit to how many you can carry.

Although I have been enjoying the game thus far, it certainly has its negatives, one more important than the rest. You basically see all the game has to offer in the first two minutes of gameplay. Sure, the addictive nature of the game has been enough to keep me playing for just over three hours but in its current state will I go back and play more? Probably not. There are basic unlocks, like new lanes and later starting years, but there’s nothing that changes what is already a very simple game. There’s just not enough here to keep the game interesting for more than a couple of hours. You can see from some of the forum discussions that the lack of complexity means some people just don’t enjoy the game full stop. That may be the case for you as well, all I can say to that end is that I have enjoyed it but I do understand why others have not. It’s worth remembering that Switchcars has only just released in Early Access, so there’s every chance that it’ll be improved to a point where there is enough complexity to keep it interesting for longer but this review is about the game’s current state, not what it may become.

I do have a couple of other issues with the game. The first, and hopefully soon to be fixed (this’ll be updated accordingly) is the complete lack of resolution support, Switchcars only runs in 1280x800 (16:10) which means anyone with a higher resolution monitor will have big black bars at the top and bottom of the screen as well as the game being slightly stretched out. The second technical issue I have is the complete lack of options, you have a control configuration menu, a fullscreen toggle, a music toggle and a camera shake option. That’s it. Taking the resolution support issue into consideration, the least I would have expected is a music and sound effect slider rather than just a toggle for music. Lastly, I did come across a few parts in a number of runs where there are no vehicles and nothing that you can use to pull yourself along with the grappling hook. This can be avoided by keeping a couple of backup vehicles of course but those may well run out of fuel or breakdown, especially as some terrain types damage vehicles (or the player if you’re on foot). I didn’t have this happen to me too many times but, as some people have said in the forums, these parts really slow the game down and I found myself losing the run either during these sections or shortly after.


Switchcars may be too simplistic for some but for others it’ll be an entertaining and addictive experience, perhaps not for long enough to warrant a full price purchase though. If you think the game, even with its lack of complexity, is something you’ll enjoy then go for it, if not hold off for a sale or wait for it to get further along the development process to see if anything changes.

Lone Ranger Reviews.

El K.
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26 of 32 people (81%) found this review helpful
12.6 hrs on record
Early Access Review
Posted: March 4
804 days ago I attended a Game Dev Gathering in Belgrade. Met a lot of nice people who were interested in games, particularly in making ones by themselves. One event was the star of that day. One dude brought a demo of a game he was working on for some time. The game was called Switchcars. I was actually the first one there to give the game a go, later there were bunch of people around that laptop constantly exchanging places around controls and cheering how the game is awesome. Real inspirational stuff. :)

Just had a very interesting 2 hour session with the game and I can say that it hasn't lost any of it's charm but that it is even enhanced in that department. And since it's still in development we can only expect that this game will just get better and better.
It's a unique game with very addictive gameplay. One of those titles that you can play in small sessions but also lose yourself in for hours. Lots of "small touches of love" that just warm up your gaming heart while you play.

My wholeheartedly recommendations for this game, and I wish great sales numbers to the developer, he surely earned it with his hard work and unswayed commitment to this wonderful project!
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23 of 31 people (74%) found this review helpful
46 people found this review funny
25.6 hrs on record
Early Access Review
Posted: March 5
Car! Yes, just what I need for this road... which is now a river.
BOAT! Yes, here we go! Some real speed on this... train track.
Um... OH A TRAIN! Here we go. Making some real progress on this... dirt road.
Time to grapple over to that small river and bring out my boat... which I just crashed into something and it's on fire.

At least I'm not being chased by a giant worm.
*roar is heard in the distance*
And THERE is the giant worm.
Grapple away... into a house. Game over.

Switchcars: Rated W for Worm.
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23 of 33 people (70%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
0.7 hrs on record
Early Access Review
Posted: March 4
Just got the game from the monthy humble bunde. Given the price, I'd say its definitely worth it. This is one of those games you will play when you are bored or when waiting in queue for another game. All in all good fun for the price they ask.
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12 of 13 people (92%) found this review helpful
1.1 hrs on record
Early Access Review
Posted: March 8
What is Switchcars?

A simple but unique running game jammed packed with insane amount of vehicles (Cars, Boats, Planes, Helicopters, etc.) and they do not last forever, forcing you to make that crucial decision, "Do I keep this car and continue on for a refuel platform or do I swap my superfast car for a moped as a replacement to keep going?". Luckly you get three slots to bank your vehicles and some of the vehicles themselves have abilities, and if thats not enough there is also power ups which you can pick up and use, by using the power ups it will upgrade the current vehicle.

Switchcars will be throwing you through many different terrains to traverse over, giving vehicles advantages and disadvantages.

While running for your life you have been given a small timer, to give you a headstart to run as far as you can before the overly sized alien belly flops into your screen towards you. As you are making your way, dodging pass hazards and changing lanes for the safe zone, tension builds as you suddenly end up being chased by the overly sized alien, trying your best to get away from it at exhilarating speed, it always manage to get closer, destroying your vehicles and hindering you, until you are dead.

The game just gets your blood pumping with a big fat smile to go with it. Now you do have a goal and it is to reach year 2055, as you get near to your goal more and more aliens will show up but what could be waiting for you in 2055? Well that is for you to find out.

My Experience

This game has a lot of unlockables which is great, it adds lots of content for a small game and many possiblity to the outcome of your escape or death which is more than other simple running games I have seen.

I had tons of fun playing it but I did find the controls confusing at first, getting my button presses muddle up since you have to be in human form in order to take cars into the slot of your choice.

Now I don't know whether its because of the graphic or simply because I am going blind but going at super sonic speed in this game just messed up my eyes, it was really hard to see but I was having so much fun I didn't let it ruin my fun.

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8 of 8 people (100%) found this review helpful
55.8 hrs on record
Early Access Review
Posted: March 20
Steam recommended this game on release day so I checked out the videos and it looked interesting. Over the course of the next week I watched a few let's plays which looked better and better, and saw how active the dev is with answering questions - you can see the guy's passion for this game, and he alludes to some really cool future features.

Realizing this is early access, I am having a TON of fun with this game. After splattering my head a number of times during the first hour, I find the game is pretty easy to learn. Once you understand the controls it's a matter of experimenting with the mechanics to optimize your game play, but I feel like mastering this game still takes long enough to keep you coming back.

The first few games I played I either died immediately (either splattering my head on a car/bus/plane/house, or jumping out of a car and getting run over on a racetrack) but after ~5 hours of playing I can regularly get to stage 7/8. The unlocking system is really cool as the more challenging terrains only unlock once you get past a certain stage - the first time I was in the space stage it was pretty nuts, and the alien world where you can spawn 4 aliens if you don't have a car are hilarious.

Even death can be funny as most games don't last more than 10 minutes, which I think makes this a rogue-like for people who don't normally like perma death. You also have a graphical tally of all the cars you've used that run which is really fun to watch for some reason. Each car you enter gets entered into a database which for completionists like me is great - with over 1000 cars I'm at 400 so far and loving it!

One of the best things about this game though, is of course the cars! You can store 3 cars to be swapped between at any time, and can always ditch a saved car for a new one. The variety is staggering, and the small details in the pixel art is amazing (drive through a muddy level and your vehicle will get mud on it, that will slowly clean off as your drive away). One of my early games I drove through a battlefield and got 3 different tanks, which I used to get stage 7, swapping when running out of fuel and blasting everything out of my way, including killing 6 or so aliens - very satisfying!

When not in a car, you have the ability to run around on foot with a permanent grappling hook which you can use to catapult yourself forward dodging the object as you approach, drag yourself closer to a vehicle to hop into it (several initial runs will be lost when learning how to enter the car as you as speeding towards it). Most of the time you'll only be in the "on foot" stage for a split second as the swap cars.

Scattered throughout the levels are powerups which range from cosmetic to amazing. Repair all/ refuel all are fairly common (and highly useful), but there is something very satisfying with turning a battleship armed with rockets into an offroad vehicle, arm a sports car with a tank's cannon. Because each object has a mass of their own, the lighter vehicles smash into pieces when hitting a heavy object/vehicle, but the big heavy vehicles can plow through almost anything. The battleship mentioned above eventually was given nitrous (replacing the rockets - doh!) and smashed through EVERYTHING it ran into. One of my first wow moments was finding and entering a stationary WW2 cannon, storing it for use when aliens showed up and swapping to it to blast them to pieces, eventually adding a fuel engine powerup so I can drive it.

To sum it up, this game is very very promising for early access. There are some quirks to work out, but the game ran bug-free for me and was highly enjoyable. Also if you don't always have time for longer gaming sessions, this is a great game to load up for a few runs.

Very excited to see what new updates have in store!

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12 of 17 people (71%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
0.9 hrs on record
Early Access Review
Posted: March 6
I'm really on the fence with Switchcars. This review may very well change to a negative as more time passes.

On one hand its got some really fresh ideas, great artwork, great pacing and feel - but on the other hand its debatably fun (and definately only in very short play sessions). I keep coming back, hoping to get that 'aha' moment where I'm utterly hooked, but that isn't quite happening yet.

Essentially, you are near-endlessly running from a giant green worm. There is no storyline, which might help in this case. You have a countdown timer until the worm shows up. Until then, you are literally just moving left to right by the fastest means possible. You can keep three vehicles in your 'inventory' to seemlessly switch between. There are powerups/upgrades, but nothing feels too permanent because vehicles come and go out of your inventory fast. The running mechanic consists of switching lanes depending on the terrain type/vehical type combination, and any obstacles such as incoming traffic/buildings/clouds/etc.

Overall it has the simplicity of a mobile game (and I don't mean that in a flattering way). The running mechanic is paper thin which is why it gets tiring after playing for more than a run or two. I don't think there are any meta-game unlockables, which would also be beneficial.

+Nice artwork. Attention to details is great in this one - run through mud? It shows up on your car (same with slime from the worm). Lots of things like that.
+Great great cinematic quality. It really feels like you are in a movie.
+Fresh idea.
+Controller support is good.
+Music is appropriate.

-Not really that fun.
-Running mechanic gets tiring quickly.
-Yeah there are a million cars and a million tracks, but really who cares. Yes they can feel different, but the spectrum is only so big. Fast cars are generally delicate, and slow cars are more tank-ish. Vehicles also vary by terrain (ie. water versus air, etc.).
-While the big worm can be killed, its generally the end of the run when it shows up (or at least your seconds are numbered).

The price is cheap, but I am very leary to recommend this game - its definately fresh, but also it is debatable how much fun you will get out of it. From talking on the forums, very few people really get alot of mileage out of it so far.
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7 of 8 people (88%) found this review helpful
0.9 hrs on record
Early Access Review
Posted: March 7
The game is already very fun in its 1st iteration on Early Access. The game is very playible with a high replayabilty. One minute I am scanning vehicles to see what would be the oddest thing to ride in, then suddenly the timer runs out and game get very frantic and tense. At this moment I realise putting the train wheels on the botton of my Go Kart was the worst idea ever.

Crazy number of vehicle options and abilities to discover. I really enjoyed the soundscape and art style and look forward to seeing the game develop further.

Opinions gathered from a quick hour play via stream earlier.
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8 of 10 people (80%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
1.4 hrs on record
Early Access Review
Posted: March 10
This review may be read in full below or you can view the review with glorious formatting and pictures in the Early Evaluation originally posted on Vox Ludicus - Living life a quarter mile at a time

A couple days ago, the people over at the Humble Bundle finally dropped their monthly bundle. There were a few standout games that caught my eye but i will be honest, Switchcars was not one of those games. However, once I decided to load up this ‘vehicular rogue-like’ game, I was pleasantly surprised. It was like finding that elusive piece of pizza that had been sitting at the back of the fridge for days, sure I was hesitant to try it at first, but after going for it, I was glad I did.

‘Switchcars’ was developed by Slobodan Stevic, originally a 3d artist who worked on several games in the industry including, but not limited to, Space Engineers and Infinity: Battlescape. This experience is immediately evident as Switchcars boasts some impressive graphical details. The pixel art is distinct and colorful and your vehicle can get coated in mud and slime. The alien worm antagonist stands out vividly, with its bright green exterior and its hulking frame. One nitpick would be that the resolution seems to be currently locked at 1200×800, and as a result this leads to black bars on the screen when using a high resolution monitor.

What is the goal of Switchcars? It is simple, you need to travel from the 1950s to the 2050s whilst at the same time trying to avoid becoming dinner for a tenacious and ♥♥♥♥♥♥ off Alien worm. To achieve this, you have to constantly switch between vehicles. The game also features 9 different lanes. This may seem straightforward until you realize that the terrain also changes at set intervals during each stage. That car that you just had? Yeah it is in the river now. That is a nice train you have there, shame you are now on the road. This leads to some intense and nail biting moments where you have to think on your feet and also have a contingency plan in place. You are able to save vehicles in 3 different slots but each vehicle can get damaged and depending on the vehicle type, will need fuel. There are 40 different power ups scattered across the 10 stages, some of these can upgrade your cars to get special abilities, like a helium balloon that allows you to take your car into the air, or a nifty turret that will destroy anything that was unlucky enough to be in your path.

The game isn’t limited to just vehicular play. You can also roam around on foot and traverse the area with the help of a special grappling hook, although you have utilize this tool attentively or you may find yourself as road kill for the oncoming traffic. It was at these moments that I feel like a 2-bit Rico Rodriguez, grappling from car-to-car, furiously trying to get to the ‘safe zones’ at the end of each stage.

The game has a variety of different vehicles to fool around with. Currently there are 1,047 different vehicles you can utilize in your bid to escape the aforementioned hungry alien worm. There are also 101 different types of terrains, this leads to the need for constant micro-managing of your 3 slots as you need to ensure that you have the different types of vehicle, be it a plane or a bike or even a train, to survive the game’s ever changing terrain. I have yet to master these tools and ascend to stage 10,but unlike Sisyphus, the rock shall one day stay atop the mountain and I will reach stage 10!

It must also be noted that the game does have a few problems. Apart from the resolution issue, there is also no way to turn down the game’s sound. Only an option to turn on or off. Although I am sure the developer is aware and working on this. The game can also get quite repetitive once you have mastered the initial mechanics. This can get frustrating for players looking for more depth in the game. However, as the game is still in early access, the developer still has time to address these issues. Currently it is very fun is bite-sized chunks.

Overall, just like in the game, there is still a long road for the developer to traverse. So far, the charm and fun that can be had from these short ‘runs’ through the game have been well worth my time. This game has only been released in early access on steam so I am sure there will be future updates that address some of the issues and improve upon the game play. So far it has been a fun and chaotic romp through the game’s stages. One day I shall reach the space craft in 2050!
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10 of 14 people (71%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
3.4 hrs on record
Early Access Review
Posted: April 25
Ladies and Gents, here it is, a perfect example why we need indie games!
Switchcars is definition of indie game!

Even that I'm not biggest fan of rogue-like especially runner games, I fell in love with this one from first minutes of playing.

+Textures and models
+Mass variety of vehicles, maybe the most of all-time in games
+High replayability
+Did I say it's FUN?!

- I Teleports?! I think they are unnecessary and I do not like them^^

Just fuc%#g buy it!
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Recently Posted
6.1 hrs
Early Access Review
Posted: October 21
indept switchcars review.


overall rating 26/30

great game it youare into fast paced action games
controls do take a little bit to learn but once you get
aroun the learning curve it might just be the funnest
game you'd played
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Slippery Wood Track
6.0 hrs
Early Access Review
Posted: October 8
Helpful? Yes No Funny
0.1 hrs
Early Access Review
Posted: September 26
fun but controls are weak imo.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Benny Dontrip
1.1 hrs
Early Access Review
Posted: September 24
Great game highly enjoyable
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Dave Thomas
1.6 hrs
Early Access Review
Posted: September 15
Easy to learn, difficulty to master. It's a fun, low performance requierment, arcade game that is fun when you need to kill some time.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
0.6 hrs
Early Access Review
Posted: September 6
I recommend this game.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
5.4 hrs
Early Access Review
Posted: September 3
This game is crazy good even in it's current state.

The gameplay is really easy to get used to and addicting as hell and although everything is randomly generated it never feels unfair, you can always get out of sticky situations by utilizing everything in your repertoire. The best thing about this game is it's variety: The sheer amount of vehicles with different stats, areas with different modifiers and all the powerups is mindboggling.

This game gets my full recommendation.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
1.6 hrs
Early Access Review
Posted: August 31
good game
Helpful? Yes No Funny
5.1 hrs
Early Access Review
Posted: August 30
Great little game to jump in and out of whenever you need a quick unwind. The art is nice and clean, the gameplay is a simple concept executed well. I've only got a couple hours on it and have already unlocked Hardcore (and the later stages don't seem so different) so perhaps the difficulty is a bit on the lower side but still quite enjoyable. Only real issue is the lack of options to change audio levels or tweak things like graphics and whatnot.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
8.4 hrs
Early Access Review
Posted: August 28
Fast paced, high skill cap (you'll love getting those twitch reflexes down), lots of vairety, has cute teleporting alien baby slug rides, what's not to love?
Helpful? Yes No Funny