Hands On With The Onrush Beta On PlayStation 4

ONRUSH heralds the return of all-action, gravity-defying, arcade racing. A celebration of sensational speed, outright fun and over the top spectacle ONRUSH is a racing game where you are always in the heart of the action. ONRUSH is not about racing to the finish line. It’s not about car set up or tire choice. It’s all about style, flair and the feeling of performing incredible takedowns, racing on the edge of control and risking everything in an effort to take the victory for your team.

Now that is your blurb so how does this revolutionary racer play? What do we get to try out in this beta? Well we here at GLG take the challenge on and here are our findings:

You get to try two modes, Quickplay which is a selection of events and locations online and we get offline against bots where it is just one mode and one map. Course I should say you do get a very basic tutorial to kick things off. To make this a bit clearer I will break it down to aid fast reading.

Controls:

Simple no frills layout here. L2 and R2 is your brake and throttle buttons, X is the boost, Square is a taunt/tricks button with triangle used for your special RUSH move and the touchpad is a quick reset to track.

Camera:

You get to move around a full 360 with the right stick or click it to look behind. You have a couple of driving views but its just close or far away really with no in car or bumper cams.

Tracks:

Bright, varied and a lot of fun is the quick answer. The long answer is you get to go on the dune beaches or into the volcanoes or snow, You will have an ample amount of jumps and breakable objects. If you wanted to do it like Motorstorm then this is more Pacific Rift than apocalypse by which I mean its a nice amount of obstacles and jumps rather than constant bombardments.

Gameplay:

This is where it gets interesting. Onrush is a team based racer, You all are in the same race and can hit each other and so forth but you also get some fodder. By fodder I mean there is these black and white cars and bikes that you can easily hit and destroy in order to start racking up a combo, Build boost and unlock the sheer speed of it all. As said you use to boost a lot and will constantly have your finger on the X button, You earn boost from taking out the fodder and by doing jumps etc but your special move is filled in a particular way. You only get a handful of cars in the bets but there is more, Anyway, each car has its own unique rush move but also a special move. Now, for example, one car can build up its special by near misses, Another one is by doing barrel rolls or flips. Its a neat way to get you to play differently.

Rush moves again are different for each car and again as an example, you can drop walls behind you to slow people or you could get a massive turbo boost. It all varies but when it kicks in you get a fat dose of speed and the music drops and your eyeballs just melt! Special moves can be things like giving teammates a shield which is handy. This all sounds like a lot to take in and learn but honestly it just all flows into the game and doesn’t even feel like you have multiple mechanics to take in, The game just works and its all the better for it.

Summary:

This is pure arcade racing nirvana, I mean it has team-based racing that works really well as you play an event over a continuous set of rounds, You get simple controls, Variety in vehicles and how they work and the locations are just brilliant. I tell thee, Speeding across the beach smashing fodder left and right, Flipping over an opponent and landing on another then just boosting away is such a bad ass moment. So many times I found myself losing track of time or forgetting to blink. This, of course, is all helped by the lightning quick load times which include online.

The main reason though for putting some time into the beta is actually because you can earn unlocks for the main game by leveling up in the beta and hitting the benchmarks. It wont take long and you get a lot of EXP from playing offline but online shows off more of the game. At the end of races, you get a showcase of the MVP, player with most assists and player with the most points in a life. Oh and I almost forgot! When you take someone down they get a replay showing it. If it’s you and you blow up you have a short 5 seconds respawn timer but in that time you can change cars so not all bad.

The bad:

You didn’t think this was gonna be a flat out love letter to Onrush, did you? Pfft hell no I don’t roll like that! Ok so there isn’t many but the character models in the showcase are very ugly and weird looking. The levels whilst big do seem a little narrow in places and the annoying thing is it’s not well known so you will go into the area then blow up. Fodder again is super cool but it kind of regimental as they only seem to spawn in the “race line” and don’t really deviate from it meaning you can go your own route but be slower as you have no boost generation.

Ok, that should do it for now but seriously I think this has the potential to be the definitive arcade racer this year and I hope it delivers.

Jim Smale

Gaming since the Atari 2600, I enjoy the weirdness in games counting Densha De Go and RC De Go as my favourite titles of all time. I prefer gaming of old where buying games from a shop was a thing, Being social in person was a thing. Join me as I attempt to adapt to this new digital age!

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