As a great lover of model cars as a kid, and a fan of racing, getting my hands on this DC Batman vs Joker Micro Scalextric Race Set was an absolute dream! Combining the Caped Crusader and the Crown Prince of Crime with the exhilaration of slot car racing – what’s not to love?!
Delving inside the box eager to set up the race track, the Micro Scalextric contains two 1:64 scale cars, two wired controllers, a battery operated hub starting piece, 3 short pieces of straight track, 7 longer straight pieces, 12 bend pieces and 8 loop pieces of track. Then there’s the addition of two bridge pieces to elevate the track when you have the race track crossing over each other, a loop base into which the loop the loop sits into to stabilise it, and spare guide blades.
When it comes to connecting the pieces of the track together, you need to ensure the prongs fit into the receiving slots in the next piece of the track. Once aligned, you need to summon your strength to push the pieces flush against each other, making sure that you’re not pushing the pieces together misaligned else you could bend the prongs if you’re not careful. It took me a fair bit of strength and effort to connect the pieces of the track together so I would imagine kids would have a problem with fitting the pieces together by themselves so will likely need the assistance of an adult if you’re buying this for your kids or grandkids.
The quality of the track is very substantial compared to the first slot car race set I had over 25 years ago. It’s also a lot more decorative, painted up with yellow arrows and detail to really catch the eye.
After 10 minutes of following the instructions and giving the track pieces a bit of ‘welly’, I managed to complete the track of my dreams – a figure 8 track (just like I used to play with as a kid) except this time it had a whopping great loop the loop in the middle. I couldn’t contain my excitement!
Before I could start to race, I had to ensure the wired controllers were powered otherwise the cars were going nowhere. The battery-operated controller hub takes 6 AA batteries but these aren’t included in the box so make sure to buy them in ready so this racetrack can be enjoyed straight away. You just need a small Phillips screwdriver to undo the battery compartment to pop them in, and then you’re good to go! If you don’t want to rely on batteries, You can purchase a mains-powered hub from Scalextric separately, but I much prefer the battery operation as you may not decide to set up the racetrack near an outlet.
Of course, the best thing about Scalextric slot car tracks like this is their versatility – creating track layouts of your own devising. The box shows 9 different layouts you can experience with the pieces included but I would imagine more could be created, especially if you end up buying more pieces eventually to extend the track further. However, with just the track parts supplied in the box, you can enjoy not only the loop the loop, you also have the ability to create a 90 degree vertical stunt ramp. Until seeing it with my own eyes, I didn’t even know that was possible.
This particular set is a Micro Scalextric, so not full size but is quite big enough for most families, if you ask me! Like most people, you probably don’t have an abundance of space to set out the racetrack, unless you have a spare bedroom. This particular track, measuring 4.08 metres, is big enough to create all sorts of layouts but without having to occupy too much space. I managed to fit the figure 8 with loop layout on my standard-sized kitchen table, which was met with a sigh of relief because realistically there’s nowhere else I could have set it up that wouldn’t have been trampled on by the dog or force me to rearrange furniture. The dining room table was just the right size for the job!
This being a DC Batman vs Joker racetrack, the set includes 1:64 scale sleek Batmobile and Joker motor, both of which are wonderfully decorated and designed. Slotted into the racetrack, they fired off down the straights and around the bends, taking the loop within their stride. At first I had a problem with the Joker car losing a bit of traction and power on the loop, but adjusting the contact brushes on the underside of the car sorted this out completely and the Joker car was back on the track and staying on it, with full power throughout the loop the loop. Due to its smaller design, the Batmobile seems to have the edge over the Joker in the speed department, but it’s not all about how fast you can go if you fly off the racetrack, which happened a few times with the Batmobile and caused much laughter between us as we tried to beat each other whilst keeping our respective car’s tyres on the track.
As well all know, the need for speed is insatiable but it isn’t everything. With the Micro Scalextric set, the 1:64 cars are more likely to stay on track than their larger counterparts, especially with the cars being magnetised too but that doesn’t mean they’re completely averse to going off track, as we experienced, especially when going full speed around bends. The wired controllers each have a little setting switch on the side that allows you to adjust the maximum speed output. This is particularly suited to young kids who may not understand the nuance of feathering the control to adjust power on bends and the like. To save the little ones from crying that their car keeps running off the track because they’re giving it too much juice, you can adjust the slider switch to a lower output, that way they can pull the trigger down fully but never exceed a certain speed, thus keeping their car on track. However, for me, the risk of your flying off course is part of the thrill. Trying to keep the car on the track as it makes these crazy loops and angles means it’s more than simply holding down the power trigger – it requires a bit of skill. Having the setting set to maximum for our controllers, we had to discover how far we wanted to push the car at certain points at the track whilst still maintaining enough speed to beat each other. I was more of a dab hand at it, with my car staying on the track whilst my opponent took a few too many risks on the bend and flew across the kitchen several times. We hadn’t even had a drink but we were laughing our heads off. Proof that you’re never too old to get enjoyment out of a slot car race track set!
With plenty of track pieces included in the set and several different layouts depicted in the instruction leaflet, there’s plenty of opportunity to spice up the race circuit and create a fresh track layout once you’ve smashed a load of laps in one particular layout (though I personally can never get enough of my car doing a loop the loop).
When you’ve finished with racing and it comes to dismantling the track, it’s a lot easier to take the track pieces apart than putting them together and took me just a few minutes to separate all the pieces. A simple wiggle and tug was all that was needed, and soon enough the pieces were back nestled neatly in the cardboard box ready for the next time I get racing fever.
They say good things come in small packages and this is certainly the case for the Micro Scalextric DC Batman vs Joker Race Set. It punches well above its weight and offers more than expected for a micro set. The quality is incredible and the track pieces with the loop and half pipe really add that extra va-va-voom to the package that elevate it from the bog-standard figure 8 track I used to play with as a child.
As it’s a DC track, there’s more DC themed cars available, sold separately, including Superman, Wonder Woman, and The Flash cars. There’s also James Bond cars, Penelope Pitstop, Wile E. Coyote, Porsche, Lamborghini and other 1:64 model slot cars available should you wish to race something other than DC motors.
Absolutely perfect for kids but also a decent entry track for adults too who want to relive their youth or simply tap into budget slot car racing where space is limited, you can’t go wrong with the Micro Scalextric racing set.
The G1155M Micro Scalextric DC Batman vs Joker Race Set and other Batman-themed Scalextric sets are available online from Scalextric directly and other retailers.