Rage 2 - Review + Gameplay
Below is the transcript of the video if you would rather read it than watch it.
Rage 2 - May 14, 2019 (Played on PC. Also available on Xbox One and Playstation 4)
Rage 2 has all the ingredients of a great game. However, they don’t work well together. From the producers of Doom and Mad Max, comes a game that combines Doom and Mad Max. Which, on paper sounds incredible. That seems like the ultimate Reese’s Peanut Butter cup of video games. But, both of those game mechanics require different world building.
When the focus of the game is combat and weapons, the level design needs to reflect that. Doom makes it seamless to travel from room to room while you clear out bad guys. It keeps the pacing of the game high and increases your engagement. Open world game like Mad Max are about discovering new things and exploring the environment. Even though there is still combat involved, the world itself plays an important role in the gameplay.
The biggest problem with Rage 2 is that the open-world doesn’t work well with the combat. Driving is mostly for the sake of getting from point A to point B. The environment is too large for how little there is to do. With barely any interactions between destinations, driving feels more like a chore than it does an adventure.
However, like many other people have pointed out, the combat of Rage 2 is really where this game thrives. It easily has the best shotgun in any video game. It’s even better than the other weapons at your disposal. There is a very low incentive to use anything else unless an enemy is far away. Plus, whenever you activate Overdrive, your shotgun will just melt enemies away. You’re also given some powers that allow you to push people around. But it’s much more satisfying to use your weapons.
The combat in Rage 1 is actually more diverse and makes you consider the weapons you’re using depending on the enemy you’re facing. But in Rage 2, you can basically just shotgun your way through the entire game. My only complaint from Rage 1 was that the open-world didn’t have any activities. You just drove to different mission start areas. Rage 2 has things to do, but they are so spread out that the driving still feels tedious. If the map was half the size, it would be much more fun to get around.
The story in Rage 2 is actually worse than Rage 1. Nothing really seems to matter or have any stakes in Rage 2. They just let you go out and shoot things without any rhyme or reason about what you’re doing. Rage 1 actually builds character development and makes you care about the people you’re helping. Rage 2 is also very short. Playing through the story mode alone takes only about 8 hours. Far Cry: New Dawn took about 11 hours and that was a $40 game.
Now, all this is not to say that Rage 2 is a waste of time. It just isn’t $60 of your time. If you can find this on sale for $30 or less, I would recommend playing this. Mostly for the fact that there is a cheat code to unlock which makes the game more fun to play. If you come across the Wasteland Wizard, be sure to unlock the “He’s On Fire” voiceover. This is the same announcer from the NBA Jam games and he makes this game 100% better.