Rollerdrome Rollerdrome

Gaming

Rollerdrome Review: Trick, shoot, repeat

Challenging, fun, and never boring

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The best way I can describe Rollerdrome to anyone curious about trying it is that it’s a cross between Tony Hawk Pro Skater and the shooting of Max Payne. You get shades of those two games in a unique art style along with a gameplay that demands hours to be mastered. 

The game has a pretty simple premise. You play as Kara Hassan making her way through the tough, violent sport called Rollerdrome.

The opening area tells you a little bit about the world Kara is in. But after that, it’s pretty much one challenge after the other. 

Basic tutorial 

Rollerdrome

Like any other game, you’ll be put through some relatively easy tutorials. You’ll first be taught the easy movements and then progress to more advanced ones as you beat each level. 

It’s a good idea to spend some time trying out the various trick combinations during the tutorial stages. Things can get quite hectic during the actual levels so, the more you’re familiar with the controls, the better chance you’ll have at getting high scores.

That’s not what I did. I took some of the tutorial stages for granted and had to learn on the fly. Not being too familiar with the controls while advancing through stages is hard as the game will really challenge you.

Advancing gameplay

Rollerdrome

Each stage has a number of different challenges you have to meet. This includes doing specific tricks on a trick marker, killing enemies a certain way, and having to do specific maneuvers on an area in the stage. 

There are also high score challenges which are the hardest to beat in each stage. These are the ones that require some level of mastery of the tricks and the shooting. 

The tricks and shooting are tied to each other. You only have a limited number of ammo and you’ll need to perform tricks to reload. So, the primary gameplay loop is having to do tricks while dodging enemy attacks, and then unleashing your own attacks all while transitioning to the next trick to reload. 

It’s easy enough to understand conceptually, but it’s in the execution where it can be extremely challenging. Enemies spawn in waves and they get tougher and more aggressive as you progress.

Precision required

Rollerdrome

My consistent thought throughout each stage is how I wished I had more time to be familiar with all the controls. I keep thinking back to how I just know NBA 2K controls by heart, having played it for years, despite a few changes here and there in the core gameplay. 

It was frustrating not being able to apply that same level of mastery. Especially since I had to go on a work trip in the middle of this review process so I couldn’t spend as much time with the game as I wanted. 

Regardless, it’s a game I’ll probably keep coming back to. More skilled players will likely have an easier time, but Rollerdrome does demand you put in the hours.

The controls are pretty tight and precise too. You won’t get through this by randomly pressing buttons. Your mastery of doing tricks while controlling the camera to properly aim will all be tested.

Overall presentation

Other than the gameplay, it’s the art style and its bombastic and frenetic animations that really caught my attention when the game was first announced. It simply looked fresh and unique.

There are instances where there is a lot going on during a stage. Other than the characters and items on screen, you also have markers alerting you if a sniper has you on lock or if you have projectiles tailing you. 

Despite this, the screen never gets too busy to a point where you no longer know what’s going on. The design of each stage makes it so you can easily tell which areas you can perform tricks on without it standing out too much from the rest of the stage. 

The soundtrack largely stays in the background but does a good job of not being distracting. Which is great because having something blasting too loudly could give you sensory overload with everything that’s going on. 

Overall, this game is stylish AF without going overboard. I’m personally a big fan of the art style and it works well in this kind of game. 

Is this your GameMatch?

Rollerdrome

Rollerdrome is a day one pick-up. If the preview videos intrigued you at all, I guarantee you’ll have a grand time playing. This is especially true if you’re fond of challenging yourself. 

Figuring out how to smoothly go from attacking, to doing tricks to reload, and dodge in the process can be really challenging. Unless you’re super skilled, there’s no way you’ll get all of it in one go.

But despite needing to repeat stages, it never feels stale because the core gameplay loop is engaging. It can get frustrating, sure, but the feeling of beating each stage all while crossing off specific challenges is extremely rewarding. 

Rollerdrome

Rollerdrome retails for US$ 29.99 both on Steam and the PlayStation store. But it will be discounted on both platforms until August 29, 2022.

Gaming

Google is closing down Stadia

Ending mid-January 2023

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The concept of cloud gaming is pretty simple. With a decent internet connection, players can have access to the best games today without the need for expensive hardware. However, for all the promise that the technology held, cloud gaming’s journey has been rough. Today, one of the technology’s biggest names is closing up shop. Starting early next year, Google is shuttering Stadia.

According to a blog post from the Stadia team’s vice president Phil Harrison, the device never really took off in the way the company was expecting. As such, the entire team is shutting down and moving on to other ventures inside the company. However, Google still hopes to use the technology (and the lessons associated with the failed venture) to other branches.

Now, for consumers, the Stadia store is now closed. Anyone who purchased hardware or games through the Play and Stadia Stores will receive refunds during the shutdown period. (However, Stadia Pro subscribers will not get refunds. On the upside, they won’t get charged for additional months.)

The service will shut down on January 18, 2023. In the meantime, Stadia users can still access their library until that date.

The writing has been on the wall for a while now. Previously, the company also shut down the team’s in-game development, limiting what the service offered.

If you’re enjoying cloud gaming as a technology, Google isn’t the only player around. Amazon and Xbox both have their own services dedicated to cloud gamers.

SEE ALSO: Google will alert you if your info pops up in a search

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Razer, Qualcomm tease gaming handheld device

Officially debuting next month

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The Steam Deck really set off a new wave of hype for handheld gaming consoles. Chipping away at the Switch’s dominance, the next generation of mobile gaming wants to wrest gamers away from the clutches of smartphones and Nintendo. Today, another player is joining in (or returning to the fight). Razer and Qualcomm are teaming up for their own handheld gaming device.

Well, it’s not an official reveal yet. During MWC Las Vegas, Verizon teased the upcoming partnership and revealed a few details about the device. Much like the new Logitech G Cloud, the Razer Edge 5G, as it’s called, will run on Android and will play the usual cloud gaming services.

Since the partnership involves Qualcomm, expect a good processor inside, too. Plus, with Verizon’s partnership, the device will come with 5G connectivity, as the name also implies.

The Logitech G Cloud also came with a Snapdragon chipset. However, it has a smaller model, the Snapdragon 720G, skipping out on Qualcomm’s handheld gaming platform. Presumably, Razer’s device will come with the G3x Gen 1. When the platform launched, Qualcomm did tease a product with Razer. It’s the device’s first appearance since last year.

Unfortunately, the teaser video does not reveal much outside of what we already know from previous teases. Thankfully, it won’t be long before the official reveal. Razer is expected to unveil the product during RazerCon on October 15.

SEE ALSO: RazerCon 2022 set on October 15

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Steam announces when next sales are

Autumn, Winter, Spring

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Christmas is right around the corner. If you want to get a head start on buying something for yourself, it’s important to know when the biggest sales are. Now, gamers have a date on when they can bust out their wallets. Valve has officially announced when the autumn, winter, and spring Steam sales are happening.

The next sale — the traditional Autumn Sale — will happen between November 22 through 29. It’s quite a big gap for a head start, but it should give gamers a healthy library to play when the Christmas vacation starts.

On the other hand, if rush shopping is more you, the Winter Sale will happen between December 22 through January 5. It’s a Christmas treat.

If you’re familiar with Steam’s usual calendar of sales, you might not have heard of a Spring Sale before. Traditionally, the platform holds the Lunar New Year Sale in lieu of a seasonal theme. This time, Steam is keeping things consistent. The newly dubbed Spring Sale will happen between March 16 through 23. It’s also a later date than the previous Lunar New Year Sale.

Steam sales are usually a treat for gamers who play on a PC. Though the platform frowns on gigantic 95 percent off discounts now, platform-wide sales events can still house delectable bargains. Now, whether or not you’ll have time to play all of them is another story altogether.

SEE ALSO: Steam: No more 95% off sales

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