Generally favorable reviews - based on 38 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 24 out of 38
  2. Negative: 0 out of 38
  1. Official Nintendo Magazine UK
    From time to time a game really creeps out of nowhere and takes you by surprise. A handheld version of a cult PC game, Trackmania is one such gem. [Dec 2008, p.96]
  2. 85
    Trackmania's beauty lies in its simple and pure game play. It isn't fancy but it's solid, looks great (really, really great) and controls like a dream. For a racing game on the DS, Trackmania gets the checkered flag for racing goodness on the go.
  3. Games Master UK
    A fine racing puzzle and track building package. [Christmas 2008, p.85]
  4. Pelit (Finland)
    TrackMania DS is a very good and addictively structured racing-game. It's fast, smooth and above all, fun. There's some small graphics and physics -related bugs. [Jan 2009]
  5. I'd definitely suggest Trackmania DS to anyone who was or is a fan of the PC title, and while the developers haven't managed to bring over every single detail to this handheld port, they've managed to really capture the essence of Trackmania to provide a great portable method of getting your fix.
  6. While there are some problems with how the DS presents it graphically, TrackMania generally comes out ahead of the competition.
  7. Trackmania DS ends up not only a technologically-impressive game, but more importantly, a fun one. There are things it could have done better, but they don't deter from everything that the game got right.
  8. Edge Magazine
    The most remarkable thing is how smoothly it runs: a flawless 60 frames a second that makes any caveats about the slightly pixellated visuals disappear in the wind. [Dec 2008, p.99]
  9. games(TM)
    All in all, Trackmania DS is a very worthy addition to both the series and the DS's catalogue of racers, and its multiplayer mode while sadly unable to support Wi-Fi, still allows for some heated competition among friends. [Dec 2008, p.]
  10. The speed will impress you, but it's the editing tools that will keep you coming back for more in this impressive DS debut for the hugely addictive - and rewarding - TrackMania franchise.
  11. AceGamez
    TrackMania DS isn't a revolution; it brings nothing new to the racing genre, no ideas that we haven't seen many times before. This isn't a bad thing though, because everything it does, it does really, really well.
  12. While online may be an opportunity missed, overall TrackMania DS delivers, and whether you're a fan of the series or a total novice, the slick, compulsive fight to gather all the game's golds will have you plugging away until you've exhausted its content. What's more, it's that rarest of things: a DS game with amazing graphics.
  13. Trackmania DS shows that developer Firebrand Games can deliver a great product without spending a lot of time on an advertising campaign. The game scores on every front and gives an already crowed genre a new boost. Trackmania DS is a game that's worth your money if you take in account that the game offers no online mode.
  14. LEVEL (Czech Republic)
    Finally! DS got the arcade racing game with actual feel of speed. Extras like simple editing tools and hilarious multiplay make the game way above average. [Issue#173]
  15. 80
    This is easily in the Top 5 best racing games for the DS format.
  16. TrackMania DS is an entertaining racing game, which crisp visuals and fun gameplay. It packs a lot of content, and more than enough challenge to keep you playing for a long time. The game isn’t completely flawless though. Cars crash through the racetrack and against the invisible walls, while the screen on the Nintendo DS is often too small to display the tracks adequately.
  17. A great racing game for the single player, TrackMania will keep you busy for many hours.
  18. 80
    Trackmania DS is a great game. But racing time trials and designing tracks starts to lose its appeal when you don't have anyone to share the experience with. If you're having trouble convincing your friends to buy the DS game, remember that the PC version of Trackmania is incredibly popular -- and free.
  19. 78
    The track editor assures that players have an endless assortment of tracks to race. Shame about the lack of online, but at least you can find other players with single cart support.
  20. While not as robust as the PC versions, this game packs a ton of gameplay with high replay potential onto a single cart.
  21. 77
    Trackmania DS is a fantastic first effort to port the game to handhelds, and a highly enjoyable racing game to boot. The lack of any online functionality is certainly the biggest drawback, but the slick track editor and unique take on the genre more than make up for it.
  22. Nintendo Gamer
    Blisteringly fast racer with slightly dodgy handling but a great track editor. Link up with four other players for maximum fun. [Dec 2008, p.75]
  23. Trackmania expands its borders to Nintendo DS from the PC versions. Simple gameplay, efficiency playability, multiple game modes and an edit mode in line with the features of the Nintendo DS with many possibilities for creativity. Sadly this version doesn´t have an online mode, necessary in the series. A good beginning of this particular racing game on the Nintendo handheld.
  24. In terms of overall content, TrackMania DS does a pretty good job of mimicking the PC version.
  25. TrackMania is a great addition to the DS’s racing library and should hopefully set the tone for games to come.
  26. The only problem is that lack of personality or vibrancy.
  27. If Mario Kart isn't quite your thing, give Trackmania DS a try -- it's a fairly solid, very competent racing game in its most basic form, and offers up an enjoyable if basic racing experience on a handheld.
  28. Despite these flaws, we still like TrackMania DS for being a game that doesn't take itself too seriously. If you don't take it that seriously, we think you'll have a pretty good time with this game. The lack of online multiplayer and course trading is a real shame, though.
  29. Nintendo Power
    Clever Puzzle challenges incorporate track building with racing while Platform and Race events test your driving abilities in short, fun bursts. [Apr 2009, p.85]
  30. TrackMania DS is, without a shadow of a doubt, one of the best racing games on the DS.
  31. 70
    TrackMania DS is a decent attempt to bring a treasured PC title to the DS, and while two of the three modes are pretty playable, it never rises above ‘competent’.
  32. It succeeds on certain levels, retaining the pick-up-and-play charm of the PC version and providing a ton of tracks and challenges for players to tackle. Its track editor is also a triumph, and its incorporation into the game's Puzzle mode and multiplayer component is brilliant, extending the life of the title and providing gamers a reason to come back. Unfortunately, it falls short of its potential due to an irritating game camera, a sometimes-frustrating difficulty level, and a baffling lack of online play.
  33. In this day and age, you just can't get away with not sharing user-created content online. [Mar 2009, p.95]
  34. Although I personally wasn't too impressed with this offering, I will say that my son (age 7) absolutely fell in love with it.
  35. The core racing, platforming and puzzling is good, albeit hindered slightly by the visuals, but without the competitive edge that the PC game offered there's little here to make you come back.
  36. 60
    As it stands, TrackMania DS is a suitable and fun racing game. We would like to see more with a sequel, including longer tracks, a friendlier track editor and online options, but for now, it's still worth a few laps.
  37. You can have a good time with Trackmania DS, but just don't be looking for anything close to the Gran Turismo experience.
  38. TrackMania DS gets the basics of the series right on a handheld, and that’s decently impressive.

Awards & Rankings

#33 Most Discussed DS Game of 2009
User Score

Mixed or average reviews- based on 13 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 6 out of 13
  2. Negative: 2 out of 13
  1. Mar 4, 2011
    while the controls are somehow more comlicated than on PC, this game is amazing. there is to odd bug that can get frustrating, but the amountwhile the controls are somehow more comlicated than on PC, this game is amazing. there is to odd bug that can get frustrating, but the amount of editing that can be done is just great Full Review »
  2. DarrenZ
    Jul 21, 2009
    The same "Just one more race!" addictiveness of the PC version in the palm of your hand. It's not perfect, but it is very good and fun. The same "Just one more race!" addictiveness of the PC version in the palm of your hand. It's not perfect, but it is very good and fun. It's a pity it doesn't also feature its big brother's competitive online offering, but that's why it gets an 8 instead of a 9. Best part is that it can be picked up a song these days. I recnetly bought it for $9 from Gamestop. Full Review »
  3. Nov 11, 2013
    A good racing game and puzzler. Works surprisingly well on the small DS screen, with good graphics all round. It has some replay potential,A good racing game and puzzler. Works surprisingly well on the small DS screen, with good graphics all round. It has some replay potential, but it doesn't really succeed in enticing you to keep coming back to it. Creating tracks is a tricky business on a small screen, but the ability to share them with friends is a good one. The multiplayer is disappointingly lacking Wi-Fi, but is still good fun with friends. Overall, if the game is cheap (and I mean CHEAP), get it and have a few evening's fun out of it. Full Review »