When Retro City Rampage first arrived in 2012, I remember really liking it but eventually finding the difficulty slightly off putting. I got to a specific section and I just couldn’t beat it (File Under “Wimp”). I put it on the back burner, vowing to return to that world of pixelated, retro-y goodness. I would most likely need to visit a fictional karate master, preferably Mr Miagi, to train my thumbs to the point of being an expert in the craft of kicking retro ass. Somewhere along the line though, I lost the way of the rampage. There was an ocean of indie games hitting the Vita and I fully immersed myself amongst their soakingly wet goodness. Ok that analogy didn’t really work. Where was I?
Retro City Rampage DX is a whole new game in its own right. It’s not a sequel, more a re-working of the original. But even to call it a re-working seems to be selling it short. A staggering amount of work has gone into DX. Vehicles, weapons, checkpoints, difficulty, visuals…everything has been upgraded. And everything feels fairer. It’s still not a walk in the park at times, but sections which may have made me give up before felt very achievable this time. And not to give away the ending of the review, but I just adored this game. Hell, I still adore it now. As in right now. I’m playing it between writing words.
Story wise, you star as Player, whose aim is to help Doc find parts to fix the time travelling booth you arrived in. How did you end up in a time travelling booth? Well…you kinda stole it. But you’re still a good guy…sort of. It’s complicated. Either way, you’ll navigate your way round a neon, pixelated open world full of cops to beat up, cars to steal, people to run over…you’re a good guy I promise! In any event, you’ll be required to perform a lot of tasks, ranging from the hilarious to the bizarre. All however, are drenched in brilliant, nostalgic references.
The amount of times I laughed out loud or spotted something cool was far too many to mention; Saved By The Bell, Bill and Ted, Ghostbusters, Back To The Future, Grand Theft Auto…and a million more. I’m still laughing at Mr Balding and Squeak – ha ha! The script, if you call it that, is a work of sheer genius throughout. It’s genuinely funny, a delicious parody with its tongue firmly in cheek, but it also raises some excellent social commentary too, believe it or not. There’s a section about violence in video games which hits the nail so hard on the head that it…it nails it. Much like the whole game does.
It would take me pages and pages to write up why Retro City Rampage DX needs to be in your life. It’s crazy value for money for a start, I mean it’s 3x Cross Buy for God’s sake! It even includes the original RCR game and an 8-bit mode! It’s cross save too! All of these things are icing on a pretty wonderful tasting cake, but the main reason you should revisit your youth in the form of Retro City Rampage DX is actually very simple.
It’s f%#?ing AWESOME.