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Redout (PC) artwork

Redout (PC) review


"Redoutís take on the nostalgic AG/combat racing genre will appease many fans waiting for such a release"


Anti-Gravity Racing is Back
Anti-Gravity (AG) racing has been a niche racing subtype that was once made popular by the legendary F-Zero, WipeOut, Rollcage, and POD series. Dominated by kart racers and racing sims, AG racing is making a comeback in full force with Redout. Known for its combat racing and high-octane, high-speed aesthetic, Redoutís take on the nostalgic genre will appease many fans waiting for such a release, while welcoming all those that may be new to the racing subgenre. Also, VR support is optional, and a photosensitivity warning is presented upon launch, so take care.

Redout's World
Stripped of its natural resources due to tropical storms and desertification, most of humanity has left Earth to take refuge on the Moon, Mars, Titan, and other Jupiterís moons as of AD 2560. The ones who are left behind now use the planet as a location for entertainment events like hi-speed races, futuristic amusement parks and zoo parks. SRRL, or Solar Redout Racing League, is one of the most popular sports, and the fastest racing league ever created.

Gameplay
Career
Career is the traditional career-style progression system where you win to earn experience, level up and purchase upgrades. You first start by choosing one of six sponsoring teams and a ship. Beginning with a Class I ship, a slew of various races and race types are presented for you to undertake. These races each have certain goals, and how well you perform dictates on the resulting experience and money awarded. Contracts are interspersed throughout the campaign which task you to fulfill certain objectives for a particular reward. Overall, there will end up being 75+ events to race with 23 (excluding the starting) ships to purchase. If you happen to only be interested in single-player modes, there is definitely a sufficient amount of content to keep you busy.

Redout (PC) image


Quick Race
There are 10 different race types you can setup, including Time Attack, Speed, Survival, Instagib, Race, Pure Race, Arena Race, Last Man Standing, Score, and Boss. The major differences between these modes lie within the restrictions regarding health, damage, powerups, speed, enemy performance, and time. Speed, for instance, provides additional turbos encouraging you to stay above a target speed in order to get bonus time reductions whereas Last Man Standing eliminates the pilot in the last position every lap. There is a mode to highlight every style and preference of play, ranging from solo handling performance to group defense performance.

Online
Auto-join, manually search, or host a race with 12 pilot multiplayer support. All Quick Race options/game types are available for selection. Local coop/split-screen doesn't seem to be supported yet.

Ship Composition
Each ship has 6 different stats to take into consideration when selecting a starting racer, including: acceleration, max speed, grip, structure, energy pool and recharge speed. Other than the physical and mechanical properties altering handling behavior, two important characteristics of each ship that must be maintained in-race are the health and energy meters. Grinding the sidewalls and track floors will reduce health while utilizing turbo and powerups will reduce energy. Keeping a harmonic balance between the two meters will ensure the highest turbo speeds and survival.

Careful utilization and mastery of the powerups will help you take over any competitor. Some of the unique items at your disposal include additional turbo, shields, self-repair drones, energy disablers/drainers, slipstream enhancers, and more. Also, these powerups are not in-race pickups. They are equip-able modifications that either passively affect the ship, or must be actively utilized in-race. These powerups can also be upgraded even further, and only two powerups may be equipped at any time (one active, one passive).

Redout (PC) image


Ship Handling
Redout's handling is best described as floaty (in a good way). This doesn't mean that it's unresponsive, insensitive, or overcompensated. Just that there is a realistic sense of feedback and control; realistic as in something expected of a futuristic anti-gravity racing ship. As mentioned by the developers above, the handling was based upon physics derived from quad-copter controllers and real magnetic forces.

Advanced handling features include strafing (which is completely different from drifting by the way), pitching, and turbo boosts. Strafing is extremely important to keep your over-zealous self from bumping into every wall while pitching helps prevent blackouts, redouts and nose/tail grinding when a track decides to go loopy. An important feature that the developers wanted to incorporate is the fact that there should always be a way to confront a corner without braking. It may take precise steering, strafing, and boosting, but must definitely be possible. I found the complexity of a successful no-brake turn in Redout much greater than a kart racerís turn (drift/handbrake), but much simpler than a rally racerís hairpin turn (Scandinavian flick technique).

Video Gameplay


Presentation
Art Design
Redout employs a very futuristic aesthetic & diverse world - 20 tracks are available for racing, taken place around 4 locations (Cairo, Alaska, Abruzzo, and Volcano) that must be unlocked in Career mode before free use. The 4 locations each have a unique biome: desert, arctic, jungle, and lava respectively, and Redoutís variation of these biomes ensure that each track feels very different. Another important aspect regarding Redoutís art design has to deal with its sense of speed. The game utilizes heavy vibrations, passing landscapes, high-speed collisions, and extraneous sounds to improve immersion and create a high octane, adrenaline rushing experience.

Musical Composition
There is full 5.1 surround sound support along with a dynamic soundtrack - one that alters BPM and highlights depending on your speed. To be honest, I was so involved and immersed with my races that it became a little hard to notice the soundtrack; however, I could definitely notice moments where my heart was beating to the rhythm and tempo. After dedicating myself to prioritize listening to the music over my race placement, I found the composition to be very fitting of an AG racing game. Filled with electronic and synthesized beats, Redout does a fantastic job eliciting a sense of urgency, anxiety, and speed (even when looking at a menu screen).

Screen Resolution & Full-Screen Settings
Currently, there is no method to change your screen resolution or windowed/full-screen settings in-game. In fact, you can't even tell what resolution/full-screen setting the game has set you up at. This ended up giving other players issues with external software/GPU technology (FreeSync, VSR, etc.). Fortunately, for now, an unofficial guide has been created to inform users how to manually edit an .ini file to alter these settings (Guide Here) with successful results.

Verdict
There is an unfortunate lack of tributes to the racing legends that were once popular near the turn of the century, especially on Steam. One answer to this is GRIP, an admirable combat racer inspired by the Rollcage series. Besides that and Redout, I canít think of anything recent that scratches the itch realistic combat racing fans have been looking for. Becoming more and more niche by the year, Redout breathes life into the dying genre. Furthermore, it lives up to the pent up expectations that many AG fans, including myself, have longed to express. This makes it extremely easy for me to recommend Redout to all of the AG and realistic combat racing junkies out there.

Setting aside a Millennial's nostalgia for a moment, I want to address Redout's mainstream appeal. I'm sure that there will be a large portion of gamers that are not too familiar with AG racing, and wonder if Redout will be worth it. The only thing I can say to this group, is that Redout is one of the most unique racing experiences on the market, especially one that is released recently Ė I canít stress that enough. If you're only familiar with this decade's kart racing games, or racing sims/rally racers, just understand that AG racing has a different feeling and difficulty to it. From the style to the aesthetics, the most noticeable contrasting characteristic is an AG racer's sense of (ďWhoa this is going way too fast!Ē) speed.

Redout (PC) image


When I first played F-Zero GX and Star Wars Episode I: Racer back in the day, I couldn't believe how sensitive the vehicles were and how difficult it was to survive and succeed. I'm sure many newcomers will feel the same way at first, but as eye-opening as F-Zero GX was to me, I believe Redout could be the same to you (in a good way). I welcome any and all newcomers to the AG racing genre with Redout. Its relatively simplistic controls and combat system, along with adaptive AI, makes this AG racer very friendly to beginners.

4/5

silversuriv's avatar
Community review by silversuriv (September 03, 2016)

silversuriv loves to review games as an escape to reality, preferring to stay on the analytical side of the spectrum. Steam

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