onsdag 9. januar 2013

Retro City Rampage

Retro City Rampage has been available for awhile (October 9th 2012) on the PS3, PS Vita, and PC. Coming in with the new year, XBox 360 owners finally get access to this little-known gem. For those who aren't intimitely familiar with video game lore with at least a passing appreciation for the nuances of pop-culture, Retro City Rampage may come off as a bit confusing. The game is very deeply steeped in gaming and pop-culture references, and this provides a huge portion of the game's charm.

From a gameplay standpoint, you'll see a huge variety of different game mechanics and situations. You play as a member of a huge crime syndicate, and participate in many different missions with a ton of different objectives. A few highlights include references to classics of the video game industry like Mario, Mega Man, Zelda, Metal Gear Solid, and Contra.

The game thematically is very similar to Grand Theft Auto. Many of the core gameplay elements--stealing vehicles, available weaponry, shops you'll encounter, run-and-gun gameplay, etc--are designed to be similar to the GTA experience. You can spend a lot of time and get a ton of enjoyment out of exploring the large overworld and causing chaos, GTA style. However, the game differentiates itself through witty self-aware writing, extensive nods and references to other successful franchises, and varied scenarios. The game's top-down style often transitions into smaller segments with different objectives: a prime example is a segment inspired by Metal Gear Solid's stealth gameplay, where you need to hide in a box and move carefully to escape from prison.

 Retro City Rampage puts the power in your hands. It will occasionally provide, in typical retro fashion, a handful of very difficult challenges, but most of the time you'll be empowered to influence your surroundings and destroy the world as you see fit, while experiencing a fresh blast of nostalgia along the way.

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