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Geek Review Rollerdrome

Geek Review: Rollerdrome

The best surprises are often things that few see coming, but more people will ultimately be grateful for their appearance. In an industry full of creative ideas, it can be hard to find an experience unique enough to carve out something of its own, and Private Division and Roll7 have just done that with the excellent skater-shooter hybrid, Rollerdrome.

Rollerdrome Gameplay

Leaping forward to 2030 where the bloodsport of Rollerdrome is the main event, it is through this medium of skating relentlessly and destroying the opposition ruthlessly that players can experience the highs of the sport and unearth more of the mysterious narrative surrounding the Matterhorn corporation.

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As shared by Roll7 in our interview, it is obvious that gameplay is king when it comes to Rollerdrome, and why wouldn’t it be when the on-wheels action is this intuitive, fun, and contains multitudes of depth that will keep players coming back for more, to make their mark on the leaderboards?

While there is no upkeep involved in keeping the playable character, Kara, on the move, the essence of Rollerdrome is combining that movement with effective shooting across the arena, all while keeping in mind objectives to complete and prolong your combo metre for the highest score.

A variety of weapons open up different ways to blast the Matterhorn House Players into a bloody mess, offering distinct mechanics to enhance your killing powers. The more you kill, the more your combo metre builds up, which then translates to better scores as you pull off sick tricks while grabbing, grinding, and navigating the selection of arenas in the game. 

And it’s not just about the high scores either, as ammo can only be refilled by doing tricks, while eliminated enemies will drop precious health to keep you alive throughout the trials and tribulations of the bloodsport.

It may sound complex, but the beauty of Rollerdrome is that execution is relatively straightforward for the basics of skating and shooting. Things do get more complex and strategic once you throw in enemies that require more than plain bullets to take down, and of course, figuring out the best line to complete an entire level without dying, keeping the combo meter going, and climbing the leaderboards.

Rollerdrome design

The Reflex Time feature is invaluable in this pursuit, allowing players to slow down time either to take the perfect shot or line up for the next trick that could score big. The constant routine that gets refined with progression in Rollerdrome will become second nature, and that feeling of satisfaction with every improvement will keep coming the more time you spend in the game. 

The various objectives for each arena also serve to drive players down the path of improvement, challenging you to perform specific tasks that not only showcases just how cool the gameplay is but also the mechanics and foundational skills that will help you succeed in any future engagements. 

Having the different arenas to shake things up also adds to the replayability and the unpredictability of the action in Rollerdrome. Some places might offer smooth jumps and clear paths to your objectives, while others hide perilous secrets and obstacles that you will have to learn to overcome in order to pump up the score.

All of that is presented in this retrofuture cel-shaded art style that just screams collectible posters at every turn, with splashes of colour and designs that stand out even in the thick of the action. The game also features a fully original soundtrack that contains both iconic era sounds and tones, bolstered by modern production that ramps things up several notches. Killing is fun, but killing to music that just bangs is even better.

Playing on the PlayStation 5 using the DualSense controller enhances the immersion as well, making the ground feel alive as you skate around thanks to the haptic feedback, and translating the force of every shot through the adaptive triggers. And if you are utilising that Tempest 3D audio, it makes detecting enemies so much more intuitive. 

And while the action is always front and centre, in between runs in the arena, Rollerdrome does a decent job at teasing the information that lies just behind the curtains regarding this world that players now find themselves in. While it is not going to blow your socks off, the narrative hooks are there for those who want to commit further. If not, you are always free just to enjoy the bloodshed on wheels.

At the end of the day, Rollerdrome achieves near-perfection when it comes to the gameplay experience, handing players the key to go as far as they want to in mastering its varied systems, all in the name of being the last one standing. It is a celebration of unique gameplay that works flawlessly on all accounts, and although the narrative is not important, its presence only serves as an added bonus for those who like their mayhem with added context. Even in such a bleak future, Rollerdrome will have you feeling good every time you put on those wheels, and that’s a guarantee.

Rollerdrome is now available on the PSN Store.

GEEK REVIEW SCORE

Summary

A perfect combination that simply works on all levels, Rollerdrome is excellence in motion whether you are soaring through the air pulling off gnarly tricks or pumping your foes full of lead in the pursuit of glory, and yet another notch on the belt for Roll7.

Overall
9/10
9/10
  • Gameplay - 9.5/10
    9.5/10
  • Story - 8/10
    8/10
  • Presentation - 9.5/10
    9.5/10
  • Value - 9/10
    9/10


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