For quite a while now, we have been teased with screenshots and trailers for Codemasters latest racing game, Onrush. It looked good, and as per usual, we expected great things form the legendary developer. Now, I have had chance to play it and share my thoughts.
Let us get one thing straight from the very beginning, and this is a very big point to make yourself aware of. Onrush is not your typical racing game. In fact, you don't ever have to worry about leading the pack in 1st place to win any race, as that's not how things are done here. A change in pace for sure, and anew angle from which to play a game such as this. Which if I'm honest, is a good thing. The reason for which I will discuss later, as I want to take the chance to talk about the positives first.
Onrush is a damn fine looking game, and if you've been paying attention at all these last few months of trailers and screenshots, then I'm pretty sure you will agree. Not only that, but the frame rate does not suffer in any way whatsoever, and you can hurtle around each track location at breakneck speeds without worrying about lag and a drop in frame rate. The locations themselves are absolutely stunning. Wide open track layout, countless jumps, and plenty to look at, as you chase down opponents. Any will do as you desperately seek to bring down an opponent. This is the big problem with Onrush, and a major downer for me personally. The aim is to crush your opponents to grab them all important points to win the match. But if you can't get anywhere near them, you won't be getting any points, and leaves you scratching your head and wondering why on earth you're playing it. The first 6 races I had, I wasn't able to get a single take down. Frustrated, annoyed and close to taking the disc out of my Xbox and putting on the shelf.
The game does improve things somewhat as you advance through the career mode, but you need some luck on your side, that's for sure. Constantly having to boost with the nitrous as well as holding down the trigger just to even get close seemed in vain. When you finally have Rush mode available, you will be able to catch them, as your speed increases exponentially. But keeping any opposition car in your sights is tricky to say the least. Some tracks are more favourable than others, as going from either 0 or 1 take downs to a mighty 11 on some tracks redeems the game.
I'm sounding like I'm really being hard on the game, and I suppose there is also an element of cynicism about this review, but the game is great fun once you master the art of take downs and winning the various events. Speaking of, there is plenty of events available through the career, and they are all a blast to play, from Lockdown, Overdrive, Switch and more. Two teams of 5 enter the fray, and basically beat the living hell out of each other.
Environments have been crafted to offer an experience like no other, and memorising the layout will take longer than your standard racing affair. But I guarantee that you will remember where all the huge jumps are located, as you seek that hang time for extra boost. Let's just be honest here, there is a lot of jumps, and you will be off the ground a lot during your play time, which is made all the more better when you crush an opponent beneath you. Each of the games 12 locations is multi route, meaning you can never be too sure which way the race will take you, keeping the game fresh and exciting.
Loot crates in the style of Gear Crates are present in Onrush, and you get one each time you level up. No microtransactions here thank you very much. Kudos Codemasters, you didn't give in to the dark side and that I salute you for. What is even better is that you earn 3 items. Yes, 3 times for your Gear collection. Be it a new shell for your vehicles, an outfit or even a celebration and taunt. Needless to say, there is plenty of new gear to unlock and if you want it all, I'm pretty certain that playing every single event to level up is key here. I'm a fair way through already, and the finish line is in not in sight.
Onrush is a great game if you give it a chance, and accept that the AI will forever be able to outrun you, probably even going backwards, but it is so satisfying when you finally become accustomed to how it plays out and use your Rush power wisely. Despite some balance issues, it is certainly worth your time and money, and with the Multiplayer portion, game nights with friends just got a whole lot more interesting.
Overall Score 8/10
Publisher: Deep Silver
Release Date: 5th June 2018
Price: £54.99 standard - £64.99 digital deluxe edition
File Size: 22.31GB
Xbox One copy provided for review purpose.
Available on Xbox One, PlayStation 4 & Steam