Publisher: Saber Interactive Incorporated
Genre(s): Action, Racing, Sports
Platform: Nintendo Switch (Also available on Xbox, PlayStation and PC)
Age Rating: PEGI 7
Release Date: 19/07/2022
A code was provided for review purposes
Is Red in or out?
Redout 2 is a fast-paced high-octane racing game that focuses heavily on perfection. Was this title one that stood out because of its tight mechanics or did it end up being too fast for its own good? Find out in this Rapid Review.
As I began the game, I was introduced to the world. I was not gripped by the story, but there was a brief cutscene explaining the world and how different elements had begun to be mastered. I did not pick up Redout 2 for the story in the first place, so I was not disappointed by the lack of a substantial one. While I was not looking for overarching theming, I liked seeing the elements throughout the levels. It was a simple premise, but I enjoyed it. Still, the narrative elements did not leave a significant impact on my experience.
Instead, Redout 2 focused a lot more on gameplay. Since this was my first time playing this fast racing game, I was constantly looking for ways to improve and better my driving abilities. Redout 2 features a lot of tutorials, and I was excited to see how they helped me optimize my play. However, I was consistently disappointed with how little they taught me. While they explained how a mechanic worked on the surface, I failed to fully comprehend the concept, even after the tutorial. Moreover, certain tutorials are locked until I progressed enough into the game. While this would make sense if the mechanics were only used in more advanced stages, simple mechanics including breaking were not explained immediately. Though there were tutorials, I wanted far more opportunities to learn.
Hard to Play
While I like tutorials regardless of a game’s difficulty, Redout 2 is very difficult, and I certainly needed all the help I could get. As I began, the game automatically selected the difficulty that was most suitable for me. This was great, and I think the difficulty that was chosen accurately represented my skill level. Unfortunately, while I liked the difficulty settings, they seemed to have negligible effects on some events. Certain score-chasing objectives would not even change as I changed the difficulty. This means that they scaled disproportionately against the other events, which changed with the options. In turn, these massive barriers in my play required me to devote additional time to certain events when I would only need to spend a fraction of the time on others.
Instead, Redout 2 featured a rewind feature. While it was not available in every mode, this gave me some slack and made the game more accessible. Though it made Redout 2 easier, I wished I did not need it. I found myself using this feature because I wanted to get through levels, not because I was necessarily in need of it. Sure, I am glad this was included, but it only seemed necessary in the levels it was not available. Moreover, it did not remedy the difficulty spikes. Despite having an excellent failsafe, it did not prevent me from getting frustrated by the intense difficulty.
To some, the high level of challenge could be encouraging. However, I was quickly discouraged and disappointed by the frequent difficulty spikes. After consistently losing the same types of events, I got frustrated. Thankfully, since Redout 2 features a star system, I did not need to complete every level perfectly. Thus, instead of learning how to complete these levels, I worked on perfecting the others.
Still, while I typically want to attempt each aspect of the game, the insane difficulty spikes in Redout 2 made some sections burdensome instead of an exciting new adventure. In turn, this made the game stagnate quickly. Plus, each time I consistently lost one of these events, I was discouraged from playing the game. Unfortunately, a major reason impeding my enjoyment of Redout 2 was the difficulty. The skill difference for some events seemed insurmountable, and I could never figure out how to improve substantially enough even though I did well in others.
More of the Same
Moreover, this impacted my experience even more because the game does not offer variety in the single-player campaign. It is an extremely lengthy journey, especially when you lose as many times as I did. However, despite the length, there was very little differentiating each section from another. Whether I was racing time trials, facing real computer opponents, or completing the minor side objectives, I was still just a car moving as fast as I could through different locations. My strategy remained the same throughout each event, so I never felt like the different levels were exciting to experiment with. Even before a quarter of the way through the game, I was tired of playing it.
This was further expanded upon because of the Nintendo Switch’s graphical capabilities. The visuals in Redout 2 are by no means bad. However, I could not truly appreciate the differences between each stage because I was constantly focused on looking at the track and trying to prepare for the upcoming turns. Additionally, the graphics themselves are not as distinct as I would have liked. It is quite clear that the graphics are toned down to make the game run smoothly on the Nintendo Switch. They still looked good, but they lacked the clarity that makes the visuals in other games stand out. While I typically do not get disappointed by the graphics, I think they played a heavier role here because the lack of clear visuals made the tracks less distinct, so the game seemed more repetitive.
Down to Brass Tracks
While I was frustrated by the repetition in Redout 2, I did enjoy many of the mechanics. In addition to traditional side-by-side movement, I could leverage two different boosts, I had to manage how much my car was overheating, and I even had a health bar to maintain. I liked these, especially since I have never played such a fast-paced racing game before. However, while there were a lot of options, boosting through levels as quickly as possible seemed more important than taking tight turns. While I could consider my options, the game strongly incentivized me to play one specific way.
Even though I was mildly disappointed by the lack of altering gameplay styles, throughout each stage, I hardly had time to notice how I was feeling because I was constantly stimulated with abrupt sharp turns. There are flashing indicators on the screen, a loud beeping when I reach low health, and sparks flying everywhere. There is so much to pay attention to at once, especially if I tried to play the game well. I found this to be both exciting and tiring. While I enjoyed how much there was to do, I did not find myself rushing to come back to Redout 2 after a long day. Instead, I needed to motivate myself to do so. This was neither a good nor bad thing, but it certainly provided me with a different experience than any other racing game I had played before.
Further, while there were some differing features between the tracks, they did not have eye-catching or wild obstacles that could be seen in other titles. Though there were interesting mechanics such as flying and flipping three hundred sixty degrees, whether I flew over lava or empty space, the result was the same.
Though the tracks did not get altered much throughout my journey, I could customize my spaceship as much as I wanted. There were multiple ships, different cosmetic options, and a plethora of enhancements and alterations to parts. I thought the customization was a nice addition. I liked seeing the different ways I could build my car. Plus, it did not overly impact my previously completed races because there were power limits on each race. It worked well overall.
Also, the music was sufficient. It was energetic and thematically appropriate for all the racetracks. If a level was hot, the music sounded like it was from a desert yet space-themed locales featured distant-sounding tracks. While I like how they fit the theme, the soundtracks were not memorable enough for me to recommend the game.
Overall, I am glad I played Redout 2. While the game features many solid elements, the single-player campaign is quite repetitive, features wild difficulty spikes, and the track selection does not do as much as I would have liked to alleviate the stagnation. Even though the game features a plethora of content, I never found myself excited to see what the game had in store. Despite enjoying some parts of Redout 2, I cannot recommend it, especially not at full price.
Rapid Reviews Rating
2.5 out of 5
You can purchase Redout 2 on the Nintendo eShop here
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