Ridptide GP Renegade is an arcade racer set in the future, in which you race hydrojets through a variety of different waterways. Riptide GP Renegade is an Xbox Play Anywhere title, featuring 6 player split-screen, 8 player online and a story based campaign mode. should Riptide GP Renegade make a splash in your games collection? Read our review to find out..
As you start Riptide GP Renegade you are given the choice of either a male or female character, setting your campaign modes main character. The game starts out with you chatting to a couple of other hydrojet racers with one of them egging you on to have an unsanctioned race. This first race serves as a tutorial as well as setting the game up to make you feel invested in carrying on and are not just competing in a list of random races with no context. Although the dialogue is simply on screen text it definitely serves its purpose. Moving on, you are caught racing illegally and are kicked out of the Riptide GP and go on a campaign to clear your name while taking part in illegal races and building up your crew. It’s a story line that wouldn’t look out of place in a Need for Speed title.
As you progress through the story you’ll earn experience, which in turn will give access to new skills at certain levels, bonus cash amounts and SP. SP are used to purchase new skills, such as new tricks and bonuses to boost and drafting. Tricks in game are not just for showing off, in fact they are used to charge up your hydrojet’s boost meter. which ultimately can be a difference maker when heading for the chequered flag. Performing more complex tricks will fill your meter up faster than standard tricks. Tricks are performed using both left and right thumbsticks and are as simple as pushing them both in certain directions while making jumps, landing the trick will give you a set amount of boost, however landing before a trick is finished will cause you to crash and having to reset on track.
You’re not only able to unlock new skills, but also new hydrojets and playable characters, this all happens as part of playing the campaign and you’ll take on ‘boss’ races where usually beating them will give you access to them as a playable character and also their hydrojet. the characters are just skins and make no difference to the game, however new hydrojets are upgradeable giving you a bit more of an edge as you play through the game. Cosmetically, as mentioned already you can unlock new characters to ride your hydrojets, you can also give them different colour schemes and decals the later of which are unlocked via playing and earning certain achievements or hitting certain goals within the campaign mode. Events in campaign mode are not restricted to just racing, you’ll also find slalom and elimination modes along side trick events, mixing it up enough to keep you interested.
Career mode features 19 events split into 5 chapters, with an additional 12 bonus events to complete too, it’s fair to say that there’s a few hours worth of racing to be had here. Races have to be unlocked by earning at least one star in the previous race, with a total of three stars to be earned in each. Racing isn’t that straight forward, as A.I. controlled police hydrojets are introduced in certain races, they keep the player on their toes as they try everything to stop you whilst you try to maintain all your momentum kepp stay ahead and win the race. You’ll find them trying to box you in and slow you down, to straight up ramming you into walls, it fits well with the game’s overall story.
Riptide GP Renegade also features both split screen and online multiplayer for 6 and 8 players respectively. One thing I found a little odd with the online portion of the game was that it searches for a match to join other players and will only let you set up a private game if it fails to find anyone. Odd, and a little annoying if you only really want to play online with friends. Split-screen is straight forward to set up and is just pure couch co-op fun. You’ll also find the standard quick race on the main menu, along with a Challenge mode which is a leaderboard based mode.
Visually Renegade is quite stunning, the water looks spot on and behaves as you would expect, the maps are highly detailed with lots of stuff going on in the background all running at 60fps. The music at times feels a little samey, but it does a good enough job of portraying the futuristic racing theme of the game.