Riptide GP: Strangely Compelling Sci-Fi Wave Racer

Riptide GP
Rip it up, yeah?

Here’s Riptide GP, a daft as they come, arcade-esque racer from Californian developer Vector Unit. With self-aware stupidity and an addictive quality, you’re getting a bargain bucket oddity with this one that’s absolutely worth the price! Ready for mindless racing action with robots? Well, then you’re in luck.

Riptide GP: Renegade

For a while, we wondered whether we should review this. At £4, plus from our observations on the way it looks, we felt it would be too daft to bother. Horrible and pretentious of us, yes, but then we kept coming back to play the damn thing. Night after night. There’s something strangely excellent about it, despite (or due to) its overt silliness.

It’s a racing game at its heart, with a sci-fi setting, plus one of the most disastrous, embarrassing story sections stuck in there to try and add some heft. Get used to skipping through some text sections at speed as the dialogue is atrocious, but what you’ll find instead is a racing game of surprising complexity and size.

There’s a career made that you’ll spend most of your time on. You start out with a basic jet-ski thing that’s barely capable of doing anything. But as you wrack up points, you’ll earn money and be able to get better machinery. You will pimp your ride, in other words. After not too long, you’ll have some seriously decent machinery on you and open up new races, stages, moves (performing stunts is a major part to Riptide), and defeat bosses.

Now, we’ve seen some gamers suggest this is a poor title – a game they regret buying. At £4 we’re not going to make that claim. It is knowingly vacuous and Vector Unit has taken advantage of this to deliver a ridiculous racing game. It’s very much one where you leave your brain elsewhere, accept its various flaws (there’s a severe lack of stages, for instance), and just immerse yourself into a fast-paced, stupid, but exciting racing game.

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