Outriders is a high-intensity third-person RPG-shooter from People Can Fly. Known for their work in Gears of War Judgement and Bulletstorm, the studio is putting the final touches on Outriders which is set to release on April 1, 2021. With just about a month to go before launch, a demo was released giving gamers the opportunity to play through the entire opening chapter of the game.
Platform(s): PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, Stadia and PC
Release Date: April 1, 2021
Developer: People Can Fly
Publisher: Square Enix
Genre: Third-person shooter, role-playing
Modes: Single-player, multiplayer
ESRB Rating: M (Mature 17+)
A dark and desperate journey
Outriders is a rich story driven RPG-shooter where mankind has set out to colonize an alien planet known as Enoch. However, shortly after landing on Enoch, the group encounters a strange energy storm known as The Anomaly. These storms not only destroy technology but give some, special superpowers.
With the absence of technology, a bitter war erupts amongst the colonization teams fighting for the last remaining resources available. After being struck by one of The Anomaly storms, you are put into cryostasis for 30 years. As you emerge, you learn that you now have superpowers and healing abilities.
Cutscenes in the game include a dialogue tree, which allows you to dig deeper for a greater understanding on certain elements of the story. Though, it doesn’t affect the outcome of the story.
Customize your character with one of four unique classes
It is easy to see that Outriders’ gameplay is heavily influenced by the team’s previous work. Hints of Gears of War are apparent in the character’s themselves along with the cover system used in the game. Additionally, the bullish take no prisoners attitude of Bulletstorm manifests itself in the game’s characters personalities.
Outriders can be played by yourself or with friends in drop in/drop out co-op for up to three players. This opens up about an hour into the demo as you finish the prologue and choose your character’s class. With cross-play support, you can play with your friends regardless of what platform they are playing on.
You’ll have to choose between one of the four unique classes. The Trickster can manipulate time, Pyromancer can manipulate fire, Devastator can unleash seismic attacks and Technomancer can use turrets and other devices to attack.
Smooth gunplay coupled with an expanding skill tree
During my time with the demo, I was pleasantly surprised at just how smooth the gunplay is in the game. Running, ducking and weaving in and out of cover while attacking your enemies is near flawless. The weapons include assault rifles and shotguns, to name a few. And, they can be outfitted with mods.
I liked that developers decided to go with a short cool down period after using your character’s special skills and the fact that you can combine them with other skills. As a result, this allows for some pretty devastating attacks.
The game includes a skill tree, which allows you to upgrade and unlock new skills as you progress. Something else that I found neat was that the game’s world level can increase. If the world level increases, it means that you can get better loot from defeated enemies.
Outriders launches April 1, 2021
Before playing the Outriders demo, I was mildly interested in the game. Now, after spending a few days with the demo, April 1st can’t come fast enough. I don’t anticipate that the final game will be groundbreaking per say. Though, I really enjoyed the smooth gameplay and interesting narrative in the demo.
Having played on both Xbox Series S and Xbox Series X, I can say performance is great on both. Additionally, with cross-play, I believe that Outriders has really good potential to achieve a large online community.
For those interested, you can check out my 1.5 hour stream of the Outriders demo to get an idea if the game is for you. Finally, let me know in the comments section below if you played the Outriders demo. What did you think of it?