Living Life in the fun lane with Mini Motorways.

     REVIEW   Have you ever sat in your car either driving around or like many of us stuck on the highway during your daily commute and wond...


Have you ever sat in your car either driving around or like many of us stuck on the highway during your daily commute and wondered. "Who designed these roads? A cucumber could do a better job. I could do a better job..."

Well now is your chance to prove yourself and gain bragging rights and impress family and friends with mini motorways where you decide how traffic moves from A to B. Work to find the best infrastructure layout, keep congestion to a minimum and ensure everyone can get on time to their destination.

What is it?

Mini Motorways is the successor to Mini Metro. Initially released on Apple Arcade, the game now sees its release on PC via Steam. In the game you layout the road infrastructure between domestic areas and industrial areas. You draw the roads in the city, building a ever growing  and ever changing traffic network for as long as you can. Along the way you earn upgrades to deal with the procedurally generated maps and its contents. Efficiency, rerouting, prioritizing and control will be key in an attempt to last as long as possible before traffic gets out of hand.  


In Mini Motorways you select one of various maps that represent a stylized version of actual geographical locations in the world such as Los Angeles, Munich and Tokyo. Each area has its own feel to it and presents its own logistic challenges. Once you select the map you are presented with one or more houses and destinations. It is your task to draw a road between the two using the left mouse button and draw across the map. You can erase roads again by holding down the right mouse buttons. Things start easy enough but the decisions you make now can drastically effect your options later in the game. Once  you build the road the traffic will start flowing in find the best way to get to where they need to go. You do not have to manage their pathing, but you do need to manage choke points and keep an eye our for congestions. Perhaps a secondary road is necessary or perhaps you will start sending traffic another direction. Every in game week that passes you will be given more roads and an additional upgrade option. This could be traffic lights, a roundabout, bridges, highways (motorway) etc. You will be presented two options and you pick what seems the best resource at that moment. Choose wisely, your decision here might haunt you soon enough. The game starts of calm enough and it is relaxing seeing the little cars move to and from. But not long as you progress things will start to get more pressing. Locations are randomly build and not always in a place that is very convenient to connect. You might run out of road pieces or miss a bridge part or face massive congested areas that require you to perhaps move roads around. But like all construction this can take a little time and especially later in the game, time is something that is finite. You see if you cannot get traffic flowing to the right industrial area they will fill up with markers. Once full a timer will count down and it it runs out... it will be game over and you get to start again. How long can you last?

L.A. Traffic is killer

Besides the variety of maps and endless mode the game also comes with weekly and daily challenges. These challenges change up your gameplay by introducing special conditions such as the lack of motorway upgrades, more traffic or other complications. In the end you task is to keep things moving for as long as you can. The game comes with leaderboards to see how well you stack up with other players in the world.


Mini Motorways takes a clean stylized approach to its presentation. It's design is simple and to the point with smooth transitions and a relaxing minimalized soundtrack. With a small tutorial when you start you quickly understand what you need to do to play the game and get started. From there it is up to you and a bit of luck from the procedurally generated spawns on how you use those tools and how you layout your roads. As your city grows the camera slowly zooms out more to ensure you have a good overview of your map. There is no panning or zoom included, instead the designers just ensure everything is available on your screen real estate. The sound used for item selection, pop ups and other user interface buttons have a satisfying muted kinetic feel to them that blends seamlessly with the music, almost as if it is part of the symphony as much as the game play. As such it is noticeable there is no separate volume for music and sfx. All audio is considered one source. If the screen is too bright for you, especially when playing in the dark, the game comes with a nifty night more which can be much easier on the eyes and you can turn it on and off any time you want. Once  you build a great city and your game ends  you can take a fun picture during the gam or of your end result and share it with your friends. There is even a build in gif feature.

Final Thoughts

With it's clean and simplistic look and easy to learn game play  Mini Motorways brings an actual engaging and challenging gameplay mechanic that has captured a perfect gameplay look. The excitement of using skill combined with some luck and making it further each time created that urge to play "just one more game". You never really feel the game is being unfair and that instead you just might have taken the wrong decision earlier on. Though starting slow and easy , Mini Motorways will often quickly escalate to a frantic pace where you need to pay real attention and the stakes rise significantly.  This balanced mixture of relaxing vibes and frantic pace makes for game that is engaging enough to make you play long enough to realize it is dark outside and you skipped a meal or two. But not only is it fun to play it is also pleasing to the eye and fun to look at as a viewer. Even if you are not playing you can tell easily what is going on and warn the player of any congestion or timers etc.

If you like puzzle games with a strategic twist and a clean ecstatic you don't want to sleep on Mini Motorways. It provides a lot of game for a soft price. ( $9.99 with an additional 10% discount during launch week)

This steam release will also bring two new maps to the game; Dubai and Mexico City and add roundabouts to the game. Throughout the months more maps and game modes are expected as well as a Nintendo Switch release of the game in 2022.

Game information

Developer: Dinosaur Polo Club
Publisher: Dinosaur Polo Club
Release Dat: June 20th 2021
Platforms: Apple Arcade / Steam (20th July) / Nintendo Switch (Q1 2022)  
Review platform:  PC (Steam)
Genre: Strategic  puzzle Sim
ESRB: n.a. ( In our opinion this is good for geeks of all ages)
Website: Mini Motorways


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