I don’t have an Xbox One, but if I did Sunset Overdrive would be right at the top of my “To Play” list. It looks completely bonkers in the best possible way, with vibrant colours and ridiculous weapons that really make it stand out from the competition. I did manage to play a tiny bit of it at EGX before it launched, and its fun looks seemed to carry over to the gameplay side of things very nicely.
Dom’s review of the game seemed to back up my views, praising the way that “the crazy things you’re capable of, even at the outset, have no real explanation beyond that this is all possible within the world of the game”. I’m a sucker for a game with a good story, but sometimes it’s just fun to pull off ridiculous stunts because they’re cool.
For example, why not have a gun “that fires stuffed bears loaded with TNT”? As long as the game doesn’t try to contextualise everything but that gun then why not just go for it and have fun? The game’s ridiculous arsenal was another area that Dom clearly enjoyed, highlighting the way the game’s limited ammo “prevents you from relying too heavily on one particular weapon” and encourages you to “experiment with different loadouts”.
The fact that Sunset Overdrive doesn’t rely on its story to justify all of its gameplay elements doesn’t mean its writing should be disregarded, and in fact Dom praised the way it serves as a “genuinely funny… pastiche of gaming and popular culture in general”. It’s the smaller details he really appreciated, like the fact that one of the respawn animations sees “the Bill & Ted phone booth coming out of the floor with the sound of electric guitar widdling”.
Dom also enjoyed the Chaos Squad multiplayer, calling it “wonderfully hyperactive stuff” and highlighting the way the leaderboards cause “rivalries to blossom before eradicating them just as quickly in the heat of co-operation”. However, he did note that it can quickly become tough if you are playing without a full team.
Ultimately, Dom was really sold on Sunset Overdrive, praising everything from the “Beautiful bright and colourful visuals” to the way you traverse the city. He scored the game at 9/10, and had this to say in conclusion:
Sunset Overdrive has so many amazing moments that I could just fill this entire review with them. It is hilarious, chaotic, stupid, brash, intelligent, explosive, and empowering, and revels in it at every opportunity. If everyone thought Master Chief would carry the Xbox One’s fortunes, then they’ve got another thing coming.
That’s enough of Dom’s views on the game though, we want to know what you thought of it. Did you enjoy it as much as Dom, or did the game’s humour miss the mark with you? Was its hyperactive gameplay your cup of tea, or was it all a bit too much?
Whatever your thoughts on the game are you can share them by dropping us a comment below, remembering to include a rating on the Buy It, Sale It, Plus It, Avoid It scale.