Rocket Riot


Blasting its way onto XBLA on Wednesday 17th June, Rocket Riot is here to blow you and everything else to kingdom come. XBLA games often have a simple premise and Rocket Riot is no different. You play in an 8-bit style world of pirates and destructible environments; it’s your mission to defeat the “evil” pirate Blockbeard. Sounds like a pretty standard affair, did I forget to mention that none of the characters have legs? They have jet packs stuck to their rear ends……Oh and each enemy, and you are armed with rocket launchers. You’re more interested aren’t you, you should be.

Rocket Riot is developed by Dutch company, Codeglue and is published by THQ. This title, that seems to have come from nowhere, is only comparable to titles like Worms. With a side on view of the action, fully destructible scenery, power ups and full on action, Rocket Riot is a serious contender to take on games such as Worms and Bomberman for LIVE time.

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A simple premise leads to simple controls. Using the left stick to fly at great speeds through each level and using the right stick to fire your rockets. Holding the right stick will allow you to build up power in your shot and pressing the A button will allow you to use the many power ups within the game. Power ups are varied and can increase explosion, shoot three rockets rather than one, allow you to fire large rockets, create a forcefield around you, heal yourself and the list goes on. However watch out for the power downs too, that will fire dud rockets or even just a flag with BANG written on it.

With a single player campaign that spans 80 levels, there is a serious amount to play through. Each level throws different aspects of the game at you. Whether it be a deathmatch affair where you’ll need to survive an onslaught from Blockbeards pirate henchmen or an objective level that sees you needing to destroy a fixed amount of cannons (that fire pirates) in a fixed time. Each level you play through is a blast (pardon the pun) however it can get repetitive after time.

As you progress through the campaign mode you will unlock many different playable characters, each are customisable in colour of clothes and aiming reticule. By using an 8-bit style of graphics each character and level looks wholly original while sparking memories of retro platformers and shooters. Each aspect of this game is constructed with blocks, in a pixel style and when objects, scenery or characters blow up, they are blown to smithereens.

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So now you’ve played the single player and unlocked some characters, but Rocket Riot comes into its own on XBOX LIVE. With a raft of options to play with friends, co-op, deathmatch and many more you’ll be busy blowing each other up for weeks to come. To accompany deathmatch you’ll find Rugby Riot, a capture the flag style game, grab the ball and score a goal before anyone else. You can also play a form of infection where you’ll have to try to hold onto a golden suit for as long as possible.

Each game I’ve played online has ended in a chorus of laughter and even applause. With games full of frantic explosions and power ups you’ll create fun rivalries with each other and the game itself has the “just one more game” feeling to it.

For 800 Microsoft points, you really can’t go wrong here. Sure the single player campaign can be a little repetitive but Codeglue could’ve released this as an online only game and it would still be worth the price. Rocket Riot could easily become one of the most played games on XBOX LIVE and with no noticeable lag even across the Atlantic, nothing can hold this game back. Rocket Riot is the game that will remind you of how much fun you can have with games, after all, isn’t that what they’re for?

Hi-Score – Superb art style, addictive gameplay, an XBOX LIVE gem.

Lo-Score – Single player gets repetitive

Final Score – 9 out of 10

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  1. July 4th, 2009

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