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Rocket League Sideswipe Review — Pocket Rocket - Gamezigo
Rocket League Sideswipe Review — Pocket Rocket
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Rocket League Sideswipe Review — Pocket Rocket

by arun809097
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Rocket League is a perfect combination of calculated action and unexpected chaos. The idea of ​​playing soccer with cars is a good idea in itself, but it’s the way Rocket League feels that’s what makes it so much fun to play. Ridiculous speed, perfectly controlled cars and crazy floating physics interactions make every game a fusion of intelligent execution and unpredictable luck. Any version of Rocket League on a mobile device should capture that same feeling, and it’s remarkable how much Rocket League Sideswipe — a scaled-down, super-fast mobile version of the Rocket League concept — captures exactly what makes its full-sized counterpart so enjoyable.

Sideswipe manages to create a concept of Rocket League suitable for mobile play. This is a platform where time is spent in short bursts and where the best games are that find a sweet spot between solid control and reduced complexity. For developer Psyonix, that sweet spot is found by taking the basics of Rocket League and flattening them into a 2D version of the 3D game. This is still football with cars (or basketball with cars, depending on the playlist you choose), but instead of covering an entire 3D football field, you instead only have to deal with all the action on a single plane.

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Due to the side view of the pitch, a few elements of Rocket League work differently in the mobile version. For example, you can’t crash into other cars – only the ball, floors and wall affect your moving vehicle. And since targets can’t be horizontal, they instead extend vertically into the air with a lip at the top and bottom, requiring you to lift your shots a bit to score.

While playing a two-dimensional version of Rocket League sounds like it could rob the game of its skill-based gameplay, the reality is that smoothing out the game works. perfect. In the 3D game, Rocket League is all about controlling the space, using rocket boosters to chase the ball in the air and finding unexpected angles of attack. But the verticality of the 2D field retains much of the same feel, thanks in large part to the way the controls have translated between the larger game and its smaller incarnation. Cars act almost exactly like they do in the original Rocket League, with motorized dodges that give you a little extra momentum or give you the feeling of a “kick” and rocket boosters that can put you in position or send you through the air. The 2D approach and vertical target mean that most of Sideswipe is in the air, and Rocket League’s floating physics translates exceptionally well to this approach.

Rocket League is largely about getting good at how to make your car fly and how it handles in the sky, and the same goes for Sideswipe. The skill and challenge of the game is in getting your little car in the right spot to stop a big shot or tap into a target. Since the 2D space maintains that focus on flying, Sideswipe still feels great as the bigger game in many of the same ways. Although this version of the competition has been simplified, the key elements of learning the quirks of flying cars, anticipating the physics of the game, and creating great plays come into their own perfectly.

What makes it all work is how responsive Sideswipe’s controls are. Psyonix has done a phenomenal job bringing the fast pace and aerial character of Rocket League to a 2D space, small screen and touch controls. Sideswipe has three buttons – the equivalent of an analog joystick to steer your car’s nose (thus controlling where you drive or how it flies), a jump button that you can double-tap to activate the flipping dodge motion , and a booster button that activates your missiles. Again, simplicity is on the game side here, as you’re really just tapping one button and using your other thumb to steer your car.

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The 2D presentation and touch controls work extremely well together. The size of the field relative to your car means there’s plenty of room to put your thumbs without feeling like you’re covering the action, and since you only control where your car points on the X and Y axes , touching the thumbstick control is just telling yourself where you want to go. Everything feels sleek and responsive despite the lack of physical buttons, and as things are relatively simple you won’t find yourself losing sight of the positions of the controls on the screen without the benefit of feeling them.

Still, Sideswipe is at its best when you connect a controller to your mobile device. As good as the touch controls are, there’s a serious benefit to the tactile feedback of sending an actual thumbstick or pressing a physical button. As is the case with all touch control games, you will eventually move your thumb too far in one direction or the other and you will have to move your thumb for good control. The limits of touch controls create something of a skill ceiling that allows the benefits of a controller to surpass.

Sideswipe currently features three game modes, all of which are ranked: Duels, Duos, and Hoops. The first two are standard one-on-one or two-on-two matches respectively, with the fields slightly modified to make scoring a little easier if you don’t have a teammate to support you in a Duels match. Hoops introduces the Rocket League alternative basketball mode with cars, where you have to drop the ball into a goal from above. It plays just different enough to provide a bit of variety in the gaming experience. When you search for games, you can choose which of the three playlists are included, so you can just pursue a certain kind of experience, or mix them all together. Each variation is just enough of a change of formula to keep things fresh and interesting, without surpassing the welcome thanks to matches lasting just two minutes at a time.

Right now, Sideswipe is a free-to-play game with no means of monetization, although the bones of in-game pay systems are in place. Completing, winning, or losing matches will earn you experience points, which will allow you to earn in-game currency and unlock cosmetic rewards along a battle pass-like rewards track. There are also a series of “challenges” that you can complete that will give you XP bonuses, such as “winning three duels” or “playing five matches with this particular bodywork”. None are particularly difficult, but they do give you something more to focus on as you play. The progression system also clicks right away, offering lots of little rewards along the way that give you an incentive to play, besides increasing your rank in each of the activities. It is believed that the game will adopt some sort of revenue structure going forward, and it will likely be similar to that of the original Rocket League’s paid Rocket Pass structure, but we’ll have to wait and see how that might affect the game. .

Right now, though, Rocket League Sideswipe is awesome. It’s a scaled-down version of Rocket League that streamlines and scales down the experience, without sacrificing its fundamental nature. It also makes brilliant use of the mobile medium with super-fast games, easy-to-understand mechanics, and excellent controls. Sideswipe is a smaller, faster, lighter version of Rocket League that still captures why the original is so endearing, and it’s definitely a game you need to make room for on your phone.

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