Review: Rive – Ultimate Edition

What it is:

An arcade platformer from Two Tribes.

The game is out November 17th on Switch and is currently on sale for $12.75.

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Fando-review-7.5My first impression of this game was…it’s going to be another flying shooter. It was a fair thought.  The game begins with a ship flying through space, dodging missiles and blasting meteors into rubble.  You start to think, great, another flying shooter game.  Let’s see how long I can tolerate this.  But then you come upon a space station/ship, which has its own artificial gravity.  The ship lands and immediately begins to move around on legs.

Once this happened, I knew the game was special.

What follows next is a plunge into the depths of a derelict scifi labyrinth.  Yet, somehow, the pods the old pirate finds happen to not only work, but are compatible to his ship.  Hell, half of the charging cables lying around your own house aren’t even compatible with you phone.  What are the odds, right?

But as you progress, the pirate uses his hacking beam to open new passages, and eventually, to hack the ship’s drones to either heal him or trail alongside him with kickass weaponry.

You move through the ship as though through the veins of a body like a virus, and similarly, the body’s natural defenses…in this case, missiles and drones…try to route and eliminate you.

The action is intense, the game play is fierce, the gunning is intuitive, and the boss battles are around nearly every corner…or so it seems.

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Story:

Adrift in space, a pirate/scavenger in a run-down ship comes across a large vessel (possibly a ship, but also possibly a space station).  Thinking he might find some quality loot inside, he enters to explore, finding a vast and cavernous system of tunnels and passageways, as well as some treasure, a lot of boss battles, and some upgrades.

Controls:

The first thing I noticed about this game was the controls for shooting…and I love them.  The gun is fired by pressing the right joystick.  It’s also used to aim, so whatever way you point, you automatically shoot.  Sure, it took a minute to get used to, but then it became instinctive and just worked for me.

Naturally, movement is reserved for the left joystick.  Right trigger is reserved for jumping, left for igniting special attacks, like a barrage of missiles.  However, there are various special attack upgrades to unlock, and the face buttons are used to select which gets fired off.

Art/Animation:

The art in RIVE is solid and crisp, with dark, atmospheric lighting as you explore these rundown scifi locales.

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Why you should play it:

 The game is a solid shooter with a Metroidvania feel, fast action, cool upgrades, and is challenging enough to keep you going for awhile.  The game is a straight-up blast that looks great, sounds awesome, and plays like your favorite song.

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Let us know what you think of Rive: Ultimate Edition in the comments section below!

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