Publisher: Maximum Games
Developer: Team6 Game Studios BV
Rating: M for Mature
In good old Sega Genesis days, there was a franchise by the name of Road Rash. In this series of games you would race motorcycles at top speed while fending off your opponents with weapons and fists. Since 2000, there has not been another entry in the franchise. Now in 2017, a spiritual successor, Road Rage, has stepped forth to take up the mantle. Does it take first place and give us another great vehicular combat racing game or should you leave it in the dust? Let’s find out.
Violence: Road Rage is a racing game that encourages players to compete in various missions where if you do not attack your opponents, you are more than likely to lose. This violence is not bloody or brutal in the slightest. Some ragdoll effects happen and sparks fly when you hit other racers or pedestrians. If you time your attacks right, a slow motion effect happens and gives you a slight speed boost. Collisions will frequently lead to your motorcycle exploding, sending you flying. If it does not explode, you are sent crumpling to the pavement.
Language: There is lots of cursing in Road Rage. F and S words being the most used during dialogue, but they are bleeped in the text on screen. If you don’t have the audio on, you will not be able to see which word is being used.
As a gamer grows up and misses the days of yore, nostalgia sets in and he/she will want something that recaptures the magic of their younger years. There have been many attempts at this over the years and few have succeeded. Bioshock, Perfect Dark, and Paper Mario are such examples from the mainstream. There are far more examples of games that failed for one reason or another. Mighty No. 9 failed to be the next Mega Man, Yooka- Laylee just was not what Banjo-Kazooie fans were wanting, and Bodycount was unable to be what critics thought Black‘s successor should be.
Sadly, Road Rage is in the category of bad. This game has quite a few issues. There are a couple good things though. The seven districts of Ashen—Subtroit, Chitaly, Downtown, Port Hamc, Ruscago Airfield, Forest, and Farmlands—are all visually distinct and varied. The game has very easy trophies and achievements if you are into that sort of thing. There are multiple characters to play as and many motorcycles to choose from. You can easily pick up and play the game with little explanation.
The story takes place after massive riots have created a state of lawlessness. Police are corrupt, gangs have taken over, and nobody is allowed to leave the city. You play as Reef Jackson, a man who has had enough and decides to do something about it. You take on jobs given to you by the local gangs to move up their ranks to take down the man behind all the organized crime: Maas Bello.The game has strange bugs. You can collide with nearly anything in the world that is not a pedestrian and be thrown off your motorcycle. Collision detection is so poor, it is almost as if a breeze could knock you off and cause your vehicle to explode. Sometimes when you respawn back into the world, your vehicle will explode just as you are dropped back into the game. In fact, your vehicle might explode randomly for no reason whatsoever, and multiple inexplicable times at that before you can rejoin the race!
The missions and story are uninspired. The final two missions of Road Rage require you to drive across the game world to assassinate targets, and if you fail, the game makes you go all the way across the map again to restart. If you succeed, you still have to drive all the way across the world. The frustrating part is there is no fast travel or way to set your GPS for a fast route back. You can start missions from the pause menu as long as you have completed them first.
There are upgrades you can apply to your motorcycle but they are pretty much unnoticeable and are required for certain vehicles to compete in some missions. Each of these missions are nothing but rinse and repeat. It feels as if there is not even variety in what order you play them in either. You drive to a spot, race, hit people along the way, evade the police, and do it all over again. The game world though varied does not look visually impressive by any means and is quite lifeless as if no living soul truly lives there. The soundtrack is practically one continuous loop of the same electric guitar riff that is trying too hard to be cool.
If you think hitting pedestrians and other motorists with weapons for cash sounds like a fun time, play Grand Theft Auto. I do not recommend this game. The achievements/trophies are very easy and are truly the only reason one would want to endure such a bad game. Steer away from these motorists if you are looking for a fun time.
The Bottom Line
Road Rage is a game to play only if you care about getting more trophies or gamerscore. It is buggy, and absolutely not worth your time otherwise.