Fans have been clamoring for an F-Zero game for quite some time now, and Nintendo has yet to satiate the the appetites of this starving group. Fortunately, Redout from publisher Nicalis has finally come to the Nintendo Switch and is probably the closest you’ll get to an F-Zero experience. I think Redout more closely resembles the Playstation title Wipeout, but that is not a bad thing if you are looking for a hyper-speed racer.
Redout oozes speed at every turn taking inspiration from the aforementioned titles F-Zero, but more accurately Wipeout. Everything from vehicle design to track layout has its own distinct feel, while not breaking from its own design principles. Track layouts are a set of beautifully mastered sensory overloads that teleport you to a futuristic world.
Even though the speed of everything can be a sensory overload, all the designs draw you inward so you actually focus in on your vehicle and can see the road ahead of you clear. While vehicles lack style and aren’t overly complicated in design, they are by no means plain. In fact, Redout could be something you would see in a modern concept car show and it shows in how vehicles react to turns and graze off of barriers.
When you begin, there is a tutorial that helps to introduce some of the actions you can perform with drifting being among the most significant. It does a good job of familiarizing you with the racing mechanics, but is not in depth enough to understand when to use the drifting in successful ways. There is definitely skill involved and a learning curve with using these drifting mechanics and it didn’t always work out the way I would predict. It’s not bad by any stretch, but there is a growing period with how the racing feels.
Once you do get the racing down pat, which can take longer than it should, Redout is a very competent and fun racing title. It’s a real throwback to arcade sensibilities and keeps the old adage of keeping it simple and not overcomplicating the racing to not being fun. I appreciated how easy it was to get through the menus and jump right into races with a campaign to work through and free-race either by yourself, couch-play, or online.
The actual racing was tight and smooth, and an experienced racer with find themselves leaving their competition in the dust. There’s no rubber banding much like in the Mario Kart series with a great selection of weapons and mods for your vehicles to earn and unlock which will change the way you race and keep the racing fresh. While the items you earn can help you along the way, there was much care taken into balancing all aspects of Redout, even down to the pace of which you unlock these items.
Redout features a great career mode and it is set up so you can just play individual courses or play through multiple. You are not required to keep down a certain path and if you want something you can just jump into for thirty minutes or two hours Redout delivers.
Much like the racing games Redout takes inspiration from, the soundtrack is phenomenal and fits the action on-screen incredibly well. The music ranges from relaxing and picturesque, to high energy electronica and breakdowns that will send a pulse of adrenaline through your veins. In short, you’d be hard pressed to find any issues with the soundtrack and this also goes to the sound design with jets and crashing making for an immediate impact.
Redout is a breath of fresh air in the racing genre and will satiate any hunger players have for an F-Zero game on their Switch. The racing mechanics take some time to get use to, but once you do the gameplay is very satisfying and challenging enough to make each race feel gratifying. If you are looking for a futuristic and fast racer, look no further than Redout.