Quantum Redshift (Xbox) review
Quantum RedShift is a ''traditional'' racer in the line of really fast futuristic racing games.
You simply race along a track at incredibly high speeds while shooting other racers out of the track and try to block others from getting you out of the track.
The graphics of Quantum Redshift are the best i've ever seen for a futuristic racer. The environments are well detailled, light effects shine everyhwere and particules of water falls on your windshield in a very realistic way (or the racing camera, depending if you're playing at 1st person or 3rd person perspective).
The game runs ridiculously fast. In fact, this is by far the fastest racing game i've ever seen. Yet with all that speed, the game runs increadibly smoothly and i never ever have experienced any slowdowns.
What brings my score down for the graphics has nothing to do with the 3D design, but rather with the animation and the engine. You never feel that you're colliding with something when you go off track.
Worst of all is the character animation. Before a race, there will be a small conversation between characters. It seems the animators wanted their virtual race drivers to DO something, but didn't know how they should move. Seeing a character waving his/her hands in front of him/her for no apparent reason while she is listening to someone talking to him/her is a frequent occurence in Quantum Redshift's character interactions.
The music in Quantum Redshift is forgettable at best. Some tunes are good, while others simply are too ordinary and others simply barely fit the style of the game. While it's nothing too major, the music in Quantum Redshift could have been made for a 1996 game. In 1996, it would have sounded good but not just in 2002, when the game was released. I simply expected better, even though it's not utterly bad.
The sound effects are only average and there's nothing good or bad to say about them, except that explosions are merely ok. I found the missile launchs and explosions to be the good, but nothing really impressive, even in 5.1 surround. Most sound effects fall in a very 1980s ''acadeish'' category. You just ''feel'' like you're in an arcade center playing a coin-up racing game.
The voice acting is the best part in the sound department of Quantum Redshift. While the voice actors are good, even though not memorable, the fact that all the racers speak in their own language adds a very nice feel to the game.
The game is ordinary, very ordinary. While it's not a BAD game, it's fairly short. It feels like a typical coin-up aracade game. What adds-up to it's longetivity is the fact that with varying levels of difficulty, you go always faster and faster (eventually greatly surpassing the speeds found in games like Star Wars Episode 1 Racer and the GameCube game XG3 Extreme G Racing) and the fact that in order to finish a race, you HAVE to be first, meaning you'll have to re-play some of the tougher levels a few hundred times before finally being able to complete it.
The game is also hard, very hard. At the lower level, almost anyone can pass through them. But crank-up the difficulty a bit and the game goes so fast that you need to know the exact layout of the tracks as well as the timing at which you need the bogin your turn and the angle at which you need to turn. The slighest mistake means you're gonna be doubled by 2 or 3 other racers. And since you NEED to be first in order to continue...
Your racer is equipped with 3 weapon systems. A shield (to protect your racer against ennemy fire), a lock-on missile which almost always never miss, and a dead-fire weapon that vary according to the character you selected. You have limited use of those weapons, meaning you have to find them by taking power-ups on the track like in every typical arcade racing game.
What this system boils-down to is that when you're behind, you try to catch homing missiles and fire and forget weapons(red and blue box). When you're first, you better get all the yellow boxes (i.e. shield power-ups) you can find, 'cause you're gonna get fired on a LOT. The game is also cheap in the AI. The AI fires on you a lot, but don't seem to care much for the other AIs found on the track... i'm not the ''user'' in the TV show ''Reboot'' and i won't nullify sprites if i win so i just don't get this agressiveness against the player driver and not against other AIs...
Quantum Redshift also features a ''nemesis'' feature. Characters have an arch-ennemy on the track that they must beat. The arch-nemesis, which sounds cool on paper, is actually pretty boring. The arch-nemesis becomes the ''boss'' of a difficulty level in an ordinary two racer race. During the normal race, the only thing the arch-nemesis seems to do is attack you more than the other racers.
The characters are supposed to have inter-relations and a particular story attached to them and they do have one, just a very boring and mostly annoying one. For example, one of those ''inter-relations'' between characters can be seen in this conversation between an american singer - remade into a race driver - and the current track champion:
-''your songs won't help you win this race!''
-''we'll see about that!''
... then the race begins. Gee, is that what they were talking about with ''character stories and interactions''? I don't know if it's just me, but i was expecting a lot more than those catch phrases... (granted, i may have taken one of the poorest interaction between characters in the game for my example, but you won't find a whole lot of better ones).
Quantum Redshift is not a bad game, it's even a really good one if you like ridiculous speeds in a racing game. However, it is an extremely frustrating one when you've got to re-do the same tracks over and over after you've reached your level of skills after a mere hour of playing.
Bottom line, Quantum Redshift is an arcade racer and one to be experienced at least once, even if just the thrill of the speeds this game can offer. I would trully suggest only renting this game. It's a very good rental, but it's VERY short longetivity makes it a bad choice for buying (unless you can find it used, or in a bargain bin).
Community review by deedob (March 06, 2003)
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