Redout 2 Review

Redout 2 is a high-speed futuristic racing game similar to F-Zero and Wipeout. 34BigThings made it clear that Redout 2 is for gamers who like the genre. It’s a love letter to classic arcade games, where machines encourage continuous play (and more).

Every track in Redout 2 is beautifully rendered in neon chrome and glossy glass, with vibrant colors attacking the player’s eye at every opportunity. Even at top speed, the swirls of fuzzy colors are so visually stimulating and awe-inspiring that it’s tempting to stop looking at the track ahead just to admire the background.

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There are many unique places : Fuji, Cairo, the Mariana Trench, Tokyo, the moon, and even a black hole. Every single is amazing. If nothing else, it’s worth slowly appreciating all the effort that went into creating each level.

redout  2 racing  track  pink  cherry  blossoms Even better, all locales are introduced with a short backstory on how they came to be. In these intros, there is fascinating worldbuilding at hand. The entire galaxy has basically become a development project on steroids for a handful of billionaires. Each field is invested by a specifically named billionaire whose motives, personality and intentions are completely unknown.

There’s just a little curiosity about how each location is developed, which could lead to some surprising pulls in the larger story. For example, when entering the Mariana Trench for the first time, the player is told that there was a water world war in the past. Sadly, players don’t get answers to these questions.

The unfortunate thing about these settings is that they’re in a racing game, not an RPG. While the setting is incredible and the lore behind it fascinating, players rarely get to see the more interesting parts of it or explore the world they’re speeding through. They have a soft spot for the track and have little time to look at anything else while galloping forward at Mach speed and avoiding walls. Apart from a brief introduction to the new setting, there is no story or characters. What could have been an amazing setting for a fantastic single-player campaign is simply reduced to an animated postcard with a historical brief on the back.

redout  2 racing  full  track  preview This is especially harmful for games that are unnecessarily challenging to play. While these types of racing games are bound to be relentless–Redout’s first iteration was notoriously high-difficulty–they pale in comparison to Redout 2’s punishing nature. The game requires precise input while moving at ridiculously fast speeds. When we say precise, we mean precise; a player can’t do something as simple as a turn by just holding a stick and turning in one direction. It’s the easiest way to hit a wall ten times and explode in a hail of neon shards. This requirement created a huge learning curve in the beginning.

Part of what makes Redout 2 difficult is the twin-stick steering. Players use the left stick to turn, and the right stick to strafe and pitch the vehicle. The tutorial doesn’t do a good job of explaining when players should do these things. The only one that’s inherently clear is pitching, which is where the player tilts the right stick up or down to match the curve of the track. Choosing whether to turn or straf or both is very difficult. There’s no metric to suggest which is more appropriate at any given part of the race, and by the time players think they know the answer, they’re already 40 miles into the next part of the track.

There’s only one way to make the game easier, and that’s by adjusting the difficulty. However, those who struggled with the last task of the tutorial were unlikely to improve. The difficulty level cannot be changed until the tutorial is complete. Until then, it’s permanently locked on Challenging difficulty. It’s an odd limitation that might put off casual players.

redout  2 racing  sideways  tilted  track The lack of complex difficulty adjustments makes Redout 2 less attractive to casual players. There’s no way to make the game more forgiving other than modifying the sensitivity or remapping the controls. Players are forced to type quickly, precisely, and accurately at ridiculous speeds. The game makes no attempt to explain the controls, so players are left to fend for themselves. There are also no accessibility options, which is a pretty big oversight.

Players with experience with such games and fans of F-Zero will probably enjoy Redout 2. It’s suitably challenging and exciting. It’s no fun when the player is out of control.

Redout 2 is available now on PC, PS5, PS4, Xbox Series X/S, and Nintendo Switch. GameRant received the PS5 code for this review.

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