Beast Reviews Steel Rats
Steel Rats makes me revisit my old thoughts about a robot outbreak in the future. It makes me wonder what kind of vehicle I would want to use. Do I go classic muscle car, tank-like truck or do I go with the infamous two-wheeler? In this new retro-future, there is a robot invasion and it is up to this ragtag of motorheads to deal with it. Time to rev those engines grease monkey’s and strike hard and fast against this threat.
Steel Rats only need two Wheels!
It all begins with man creating tech, tech becomes efficient and then things go horribly wrong. It is a tale as old as any science fiction story. Robots wreck the world because humanity relied on them too much. What does one do in this future/retro world? You modify your hog and take to the streets to liberate the people. The sad part is the Junkbots overran everyone, but the Steel Rats came at the right time to throw down.
Heroes 4 Take the Streets:
This is your 2.5 D experience where you have terrain going from A and B. But you can go vertical in which you will have to solve puzzles and find secrets in each level. It is not that tasking and can be fun. There are 4 unique characters each having their own special abilities with their bikes.
- James Jones The Fearless Leader – Rocks an armored motorbike
- Lisa Carvalio The fastest of the Group – Known for her Flames
- Randall the Biker Prince – Chains of Fury
- Toshi Takahiro the Teenage Genius – High Tech weaponry
I am currently playing on the PlayStation 4 so all information will be used from that controller. You will start off with Toshi giving you the ins and outs in a nice tutorial. Using the left Analog to steer up and down through obstacles. If you want to turn around in a quick 180 just hit Circle. However, when having to turn a corner you will need to combine up and circle to do a full U-turn. Then your main weapon is what I call “The Razor Wheel”. By holding the X-Button you can whip out a front wheel heated razor wheel. This can work on an offense and help with your terrain.
There will be pipes on each level. if you hold the X button while going towards these pipes something magical happens! You will stick to that terrain like glue, but check the area because you could find a secret. Other things to note is if you lean back on the left analog you can do a wheelie at any time. The bikes are quite nimble and hitting the Triangle can perform a jump. It becomes tricky when you have got to hard to reach areas. If you double tap the X Button you can perform a vicious thrust forward. If you want you can be stylish by performing front or back flips while in the air.
Now, there are specials for each character and to switch between them just click in the R3 button. If one dies you will just have to pick the remaining characters. A skill street is involved and it is pretty intense with Perks, Primary, Charge, and Ultimate. perks have two rows. Each will cost a certain amount of points, but you will earn a lot easy at each level. There are 28 levels that you will need to go through as you open up each district. The best part about this is that each character works well.
Randall has a Harpoon special and if you do the double tap Circle. This causes a shield spin combined with L2 he will shoot our multiple harpoons. Lisa can use flames especially if you get an air can burn them with her exhaust. James has an energy blast from the front of his hog which looks like a Rhino punch. Toshi has a mini-bot that follows him around shooting lasers. Utilize each character to your will, but also keep in mind that all the characters also have a gun feature. Once you obtain ammo from any ammo crate laying around you use your gun with the Square button. This has an auto-aim feature so don’t spray and pray. Just aim near an enemy and it will make its mark.
Bike Vs. Mech Junk
There are some huge bosses and sub-bosses at times. You can be a bit intimidated by this but remember you have everything you need to survive. As simple as this game may look it can be complicated in your timing and using your abilities for the right fight. Teamwork makes the dream work and knows your perks, ultimates, and charges. The good news is that there will be ammo boxes to give you an advantage in some fights that respawn. The bosses are not the only challenge keep in mind. Each level will have specifics in time trials to earn extra bonuses, how many secrets you find and even stunts. Try getting through without losing a character as well.
In this world it is alive and full of fear with the junk bots around, however, I am having fun riding around. Being that it is kind of a side-scrolling game it does looks amazing. You have NPC humans running around from danger. There are background scenes that may show you your next boss fight waiting for you soon. As you go through the levels certain cosmetic unlocks will be available for you. It will cost you scraps and you can change not only the characters but match them with their bikes. It is simple but a fun feature either way.
I have to admit there are many different junk bots that give you a fierce challenge. You will have your standard bots with spinning razors. You have the armadillo bots that home in on you, but you can use them against other bots. Think of it as magnetic mines but leading them towards enemies. As a strategy, I use them against the bigger bots. With four seconds and 28 levels, you will have a lot to do.
Not every game can be perfect and Steel Rats has its moments in the, “oh what the hell man?”. My only gripe is the controls at times where it can be a bit too sensitive. I try to go up to make a turn but instead perform a wheelie. Reverse wants to work when it wants to work which is weird. I can’t control reverse unless I was already moving and even with Jump combined with the double tap X dash you don’t get much height for certain obstacles. What is up with the fall damage? I get when you fall from a huge height, but some are not that high and I explode.
What is good though is the fact if you find a secret and die, you will still have said secret. They look like Steel Rat logo symbols so keep an eye out.
Ride or Die!
Steel Rats is a pretty decent game which only will cost you 20 bucks. There is replay value to be had especially online leaderboards to give you a decent challenge. I love the commentary of the characters which gives it more life and shows how an indie title gives a lot of effort. The only thing I would suggest if possible to have Biker Mice from Mars DLC pack. I know Moto would not appreciate being called a rat, but it has the right type of attitude just for those Chicago heroes.
At the end of the road, Steel Rats gets 4 paws out of 5. Check it out right now which is available on PlayStation 4, Xbox One and Steam Marketplace. Give it a go and I will see you on the streets. – Beast Out –