SpeedRunners (PC) Review

By Thom Compton 06.05.2016

Review for SpeedRunners on PC

Some gamers missed a really important moment in gaming, where having a system, a shiny new game, and a controller weren't enough. You also needed a couch. "Couch co-op" gets thrown around a lot, as far as terms go, and it's easy to see why: playing against other people who are sitting right next to you is thrilling. SpeedRunners captures the essence of that experience in a bottle.

4 players, whether your friends or AI, will race around an environment, trying not to fall off the screen. While it may seem too simple to be fun, that's because that hardly encompasses what makes the experience. A plethora of weapons are available, along with a hook. Using them correctly can not only assist in movement, but also in putting opponents in severely dangerous predicaments.

A word to the wise, because gamers often neglect this simple rule: when starting out, head into the tutorial. SpeedRunners is a simple enough game to control, but in order to get good, one needs to understand the science. Running across the screen at exceeding speeds is exhilarating, especially once you figure out how momentum works. Momentum is critical, which explains why the game works the way it does. Matches are quick, usually wrapping up in around a minute. The story mode has plenty to explore, though the real brunt of gameplay will more than likely be in the multiplayer mode. Either way, there's plenty of depth to the game, whether it be learning how to pull off a tricky spot flawlessly, or learning that the freeze ray can also be used to turn your opponents into instant platforms. SpeedRunners is a joy to explore.

Screenshot for SpeedRunners on PC

Some of the gameplay, however, is still a mystery. It's not obvious what causes the screen to slowly close in around the player, though it may be that the player has survived too long or hit too many obstacles. While the gameplay can take some time getting used to, this never feels explained. In fact, the tutorial only really covers the button presses. While it's nice to know how to play, much of the passive sections of the game are actually left for the player to discover. It's fun to find things out, but certain things, like endgame conditions, could be more obviously explained.

Graphically, SpeedRunners is some of the neatest and most well-kept pixel art around. All of the character models are fairly boring, being bland sci-fi representations that feel more in place in a Buck Rogers episode. This seems to be the aim though, so the art style will come down to personal taste. Some of the tracks get very boring, very quickly. Failing at the same spot over and over again really is the player's fault, because the controls are tuned tightly. However, failing because every section looks too similar to get a good grasp on location becomes a little humdrum.

Screenshot for SpeedRunners on PC

Cubed3 Rating

8/10
Rated 8 out of 10

Great - Silver Award

Rated 8 out of 10

SpeedRunners is the very definition of couch co-op excitement. Getting together three other friends and racing around a track, with physics and controls this tight, is thoroughly enjoyable. While the art may be a miss, and some further explanation of the game would definitely help, this is a game that is definitely meant to be explored with other players. Get a group together, and get ready to take off, because SpeedRunners is doing anything but slowing down.

Developer

DoubleDutch Games

Publisher

tinybuild

Genre

2D Platformer

Players

1

C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  8/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  0 (0 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date Out now   Japan release date Out now   Australian release date Out now   

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