It’s hip, it’s frantic, it’s funky… it’s Onrush! A fresh take on the racing genre, Onrush seeks to impress with plenty of style and the ability to get palms sweaty from intense races. Hailing from Codemasters, the developers behind Dirt series among many others; Onrush is in very capable hands. After all, Codemasters have dabbled in their fair share of racers in the past; all that experience went into crafting this vehicular slaughter title.
In truth, I can’t dub this game as a norm in the genre. Normal racing games focus on coming first, but Onrush has more in common with the titles Overwatch and Twisted Metal. As odd as that sounds, the execution of the two play styles works like a charm.
Combine the vehicular slaughter of Twisted Metal and Burnout with car classes similar to Overwatch. The concept is simple as well, allowing any and everyone to jump right in and gain a full understanding of its gameplay. There are eight classes in total, and make up the entirety of the game’s playable cars. Broken down into familiar roles like tanks, attackers, specialists and supports. Each class has different specials to be utilized throughout the race, including ultimate moves called Rush. Rush is built by performing certain actions like takedowns, boosting or even pulling off tricks. Skilled players will be able to combo these actions together to keep the power coming and boost their team to victory.
Different Modes For Different Folks
At launch, only four race modes are available. Overdrive has players speeding along, pulling off tricks and other techniques to boost their teams’ points. The first team to reach the required amount of points wins a set, allowing opponents for a comeback. In order to win in Countdown, players have to drive through checkpoints and keep their time limit up. Each checkpoint counts as one second, so the whole team needs to come together in order to pull off a win.
Lockdown plays out like a game of domination and by far the more hectic game type. The goal here is to catch up with moving points before opponents, while racing throughout the track. Maintaining control won’t be easy as the opposing team will do whatever they can to make that point their. Players have to be smart with their driving and find opportune moments to maximize those Rush abilities. Finally, Switch is team deathmatch with a twist. Starting with the first two classes, whenever the player crashes, they are forced to choose from one of the other two classes. The goal is to waste the opposing teams switches before your team does.
*Codemasters confirmed additional content such as modes, events and more will become available in the future.*
With races being wild and swift, it may be hard for some players to keep up. Thankfully, Codemasters came up with the Stampede system. What it does is to make sure all players stick with the group. Whenever someone begins to lag behind, a time gauge appears. If a player can’t get back to the action in time, they’ll automatically respawn back in the fray.
People interested in Onrush should take note that the experience is a mostly online one. Without the ability to go online, players are limited to the custom game option and Superstar, Onrush’s single player mode. Superstar acts as training wheels for players to get familiar with individual classes and the 4 types of races. Sadly, Superstar offers very little outside of being a glorified tutorial. Nothing wrong with it but as someone who enjoys playing alone once in awhile, Superstar left me disappointed with its barebones content.
Unfortunately, these modes can only be utilized solo if offline. Otherwise, internet is needed to run through these options with friends. Split screen isn’t possible either, so it’s safe to say that if you don’t plan on playing online, best skip the game altogether.
However, for those planning to go online, that’s where Onrush really shines through. Players will be able to set up quickplay matches or go competitive with ranked races. During the timeframe of this review, ranked matches were unavailable and what they entail I cannot say. Codemasters has confirmed ranked matches will start a few weeks after the game’s launch. This way, players can settle in, learn the ropes and metas for specific modes.
Never did I find it hard to find a match during the time of my review. Honestly, I encountered no lag, screen tear or frame rate drops throughout the multiple matches I played. I can only hope the servers hold up well when the floodgates open.
Seriously, I found myself repeating that line and couldn’t tear away from this game so easily. It’s addictive once a full understanding comes to pass. Even when I played alone, I found myself wanting to get another race in before bed or going to work. Get a full squad going and the hours just melt away. With multiplayer games being so popular, it’s hard for a game to find a holding place and can easily get lost in the sea of titles. So when a game like this manages to catch my attention and hold it, I tend to be quite impressed
Onrush channels its inner JSRF in regards to the vibe and OST, which players will no doubt take notice of. For one, I can’t help but compare the announcer to that of Professor K, the funky DJ who narrates JSRF. The way she speaks and her mannerism are quite similar to the way he addresses the player. The OST makes the time spent in the menus enjoyable, thanks to the dope beats supplied. Thankfully too because players will spent quite some time navigating the menus, customizing their rides among other things. It goes without saying but the game has no shortage of style.
Loot Box Done Right
Loot boxes are a thing here in Onrush but just like Overwatch, the items gained are merely cosmetic. A smart move considering loot boxes have the spotlight on them these days. The rewards deny any advantage to one person, leaving loot boxes are harmless and even encourage continued play. An incentive to strive for instead of becoming a chore to worry over. It is with great pleasure to announce no real-world currency is needed to obtain loot boxes. Coins are the in-game currency and players will acquire quite a bit throughout their Onrush career. All it takes it to compete in races, complete dailies and meet certain objectives to get coins flowing.
Despite me really loving Onrush, my main concern here ties into the game’s lack of content. Without much going for it outside of the online experience, asking for full price is a big pill to swallow. With some games these days offering so much content for so little, Onrush appears to be the opposite and will definitely deter would-be consumers until a price drop.
All in all, Onrush turns out to be a wonderful and addicting entry into the racing genre. Those who enjoy the thought of competing online and can’t wait to get the squad together, will no doubt find plenty of reasons to stick around. If that doesn’t sound too appealing, do some quick research before making a decision. Either way, I’m hoping to see plenty of content in the nearby future and maybe we’ll start to see more titles of a similar ilk if all goes well. Now get out there and get some takedowns!