Wrecked: Revenge Revisited review (XBLA) + Highway to Hell (DLC)
Wrecked: Revenge Revisited was developed by Supersonic Software Ltd. and published by 505 Games. It was released March 28, 2012 for 1200 MSP. A copy was purchased by the reviewer.
Wrecked: Revenge Revisited is a shared screen combat racing game from the creators of Mashed and Micro Machines V4. In Wrecked, players vie for the lead on relatively short circuits, with an eliminator line chasing them. Anyone caught by the eliminator line is, you guessed it, eliminated. During the race corners are dangerous, as anyone who has taken geometry will tell you the line will cross a lot of distance on the outside corner. Power-ups litter each map and vary greatly, combining with the high speed racing to form a pretty darn chaotic game.
The game has 24 single player missions with set goals to beat and medals to earn, and that’s it for single player content. The game sports four player offline and online multiplayer and customization options for vehicles as well as race rules, and an XP system which grants players more customization options as they play the game. There are six tracks across which players will turn and burn, and four cars (all of which play identically) to choose from.
Here’s what we liked:
Stick to the road – The tried and true formula works well here. The seen-before is revisited with plenty of polish, action and the proper mix of skill and random. Wrecked brings a fun level of physics to the racing and combat, with certain weapons resulting in some wildly silly reactions and each corner being a tense and dangerous situation. Some maps are all about tough cornering, while some present ice as a major obstacle or copious cliffs with no protection, and still others have ramps in precarious places.
Ooh, shiny – Plenty of polish helps the game pop, though again not much in the way of risk taking here. Levels look good, so do the vehicles. There’s a decent amount of customization and the camera makes a point to really show off players’ design decisions. There are only four cars, but players can pick from a wide variety of liveries and color combinations for their vehicle to make it stand out in the chaos, which cars do quite easily.
KABOOM! – The weapon selection is vast and varied and easily identifiable on the map. Players will quickly pick a favorite weapon based on play style and their own ability to use the weapon effectively. For instance, the Sonic Boom weapon can be used to knock players off the maps or to just push them back (or ahead), while the machine gun and shocker weapons are great for damage and disrupting controls. Of the fourteen weapons available they’re mostly balanced, and all fun.
Multiplayer mashup – Playing this game splitscreen with three other people is incredibly entertaining. The game is very easy to pick up, has a clearly outlined goal and straightforward mechanics. Wrecked uses a boost system which gives players something to “master”, but beyond that the game is all cornering and crazy combat chaos. Since players rarely ever need to brake, the game is all gun and fun, and as such is perfect for couch time shenanigans. Unfortunately there’s no “random map” selection, but load times are short and there are plenty of changeable rules and match settings to keep each session fresh.
Visiting revenge – All of the above is a testament to the “wrecked” portion of this game, but there’s an additional mechanic when playing multiplayer that stands for the revenge. There are five different revenge powers players can trigger when dead ranging from a targeted shockwave or homing missile to a incredibly dubious swap-device which swaps cars after a short charge up time. It’s a neat mechanic that keeps players in the game even after elimination but be careful as it does tend to end friendships. Don’t just pick on the leader.
Here’s what we didn’t like:
Seriously, that’s it? – Let’s go through a content list: four cars, six tracks, four types of single player missions with six missions each, online multiplayer, offline multiplayer with team variants, 14 weapons. That’s an embarrassingly small amount of content.
Six tracks is absolutely unforgivable considering there’s really nothing amazing about any of them. One is a triangle, one is a line. We can’t imagine how grueling the hour devoted to level design was. Perhaps that’s an overstatement, but there’s ZERO reason to have only six maps.
For a game with an XP-based unlock system with customization rewards, having only four cars is ridiculous. Yeah, they all handle the same and that’s fine, but give people more to work with! The car variety is abysmal beyond that, there may as well be three cars; muscle, exotic, concept (or something).
The single player missions are amazingly easy up until the end, and are definitely not worth replaying for anything beyond achievements. Each mission has some attention paid to it and that’s awesome, but there needs to be more; the single player lasts roughly an hour to two hours depending on player skill.
Lastly the multiplayer has one mode which doesn’t even have a name, it’s just… the game. Drive and shoot. That’s fun, at least, but there’s so much more room to grow on the game’s rather delicious meat. Perhaps an arena mode or an infection mode, these are trivial things that we thought up in two seconds, how is it Wrecked only has one mode?
At least the weapons are cool.
Let’s take this online… eventually – Laaaag. The obvious intent of this game was to survive via multiplayer be it online or offline because there’s such a dearth of content. It would be fitting as such that the game’s online multiplayer would be fully fleshed out with options with high quality net coding. But it isn’t. It’s sensible to imagine that when it’s time to go, all players will sprint from the starting line… but they won’t. Hit detection is shoddy, connectivity is crap, and if only one player drops (which they will do when they’re losing) the whole game ends. In short, the online is unplayable in just about every respect.
Let’s be clear: Wrecked is plenty of fun. The driving is solid, turns are swift and dangerous, the weapons are fun and varied, and the cars pop and stand out well. That said, there’s almost nothing in this game. It’s flabbergasting, that’s what it is. We’ve known about Wrecked for quite some time, the amount of time that must’ve gone into this game just isn’t evident in the game itself. Somewhere there must be a garage full of tossed ideas and failed implementations, because we must grant that what actually made it into the game is good, it’s playable (offline, at least) and it’s worth trying. Just… not buying.
We say it’s worth trying, but really it’s more like go play it at a friend’s house. The demo is online only, and the online is worth roughly nil. However, a group of four buddies going at it in this game can be entertained for hours on end! We want to be clear that this game is by no means worthless, it’s just not worth 1200 MSP, and it’s certainly not worth a buy unless you have friends to play with offline.
Score: Skip It!
Highway to Hell (DLC)
The Highway to Hell DLC for Wrecked: Revenge Revisited was developed by Supersonic Software Ltd. and published by 505 Games. It was released March 28, 2012 for400 MSP. A copy was purchased by the reviewer.
The Highway to Hell DLC adds two new tracks to the game, both of which have a “freeway” feel to them with cars and trucks to dodge while racing down the streets. On top of the new tracks, which is the main attraction of the DLC, there’s eight new missions (one of each type for each track) on the single player side. Continuing down the list of “things we’re adding just to out of the small amount of things we have to offer” the DLC also has a new vehicle to customize and two new weapons. But are any of these things any good?
Here’s what we liked:
It starts with good maps… – Much like the core game, yes. Surprise. The two tracks are fun, especially since the trucks moving about provide a more interactive element to the races, and create interesting traps for weapons and revenge opportunities. Similar to Ice Bridge, Downtown has two sprints but it’s interrupted by big rigs and buses on one side and has players dodging between them on the other, making for great, tense driving. Crosstown, the other new map, has much more weaving vehicles trying to cut players off and is riddled with cliffsides, making it one of our favorites due to the high danger levels.
Here’s what we didn’t like:
Mission failure – The single player missions are still incredibly short and uninteresting because again they’re more of what you’ve seen, just in a new place. Woop-di-doo. It’s impossible to overstate how worthless this part of the DLC is. It’s literally twenty minutes of your time, if even.
And ends with weapons… – Yay. We get boooooooring weapons, consisting of the jet booster and the shield. Why these seemingly straightforward and in-every-other-game weapons are in the DLC and not the game, we have no idea. The jet booster is pretty much a win button if you hit it coming out of a corner in the lead, which is ridiculously unbalanced. The shield not only prevents all damage from being done to the person using it, but it also pushes away all other racers and dishes back tons of damage to them. In fact, it’s the most powerful thing in the game, even more so than the railgun. You can make that fun if you’d like, but for the most part you’ll be turning off both of these weapons when playing with your buddies.
So here we are again, the DLC (which costs a third of the game) has some pretty good content in terms of the maps, but the rest of it has drawbacks which prevent the DLC from being worth it. And of course, on top of that, there’s just not enough in here. To put it in perspective, telative to what’s in the actual game, there’s a good amount of content in this DLC. Unfortunately, since there isn’t much in the actual game, there’s really not much here either. The maps are pretty good, and they’re far enough from what’s in the game to be welcome additions, but with only two (very unbalanced) weapons and one (very plain) car, the toll booth before the Highway to Hell is just asking too much at 400 MSP.
Oh yeah, and the single player missions aren’t worth a damn thing. Forgot to say that again.
Score: Skip It!