Roundabout (XB1) Review

Ken McKown

Driving in circles.

I enjoy that we live in a time where video games can be just about anything and still exist. Roundabout is the kind of game that a few years ago, would never have come to exist. The premise is just too, well ridiculous, and the concept far too simple.

Roundabout is a top-down arcade-style game where the premise is not far removed from something like Crazy Taxi. Players assume the role of Georgio Manos, a driver tasked with delivering passengers to their destination. The catch is that Georgio’s vehicle is constantly spinning in circles. Avoiding obstacles and collecting coins is the name of the game, although death is less than punishing.

Clean up on Main St.

Clean up on Main St.

MSRP: $14.99
Platforms: XB1, PC
Price I’d Pay: $4.99

Destroying the car only resets players back to the last checkpoint, which is never that far away. The real challenge comes in completing objectives on each delivery. Things such as not destroying the car, collecting all the coins and so on garner higher scores. Leader boards are the driving factor, but those willing to persevere can still finish the game.

Figuring out how to fit through spaces while racing against the clock can be both fun and frustrating. This game has the ability to get me in a loop of destruction, where I am attempting to force myself through a section. Sections can be replayed at any time, and it is definitely necessary to complete all the objectives. Getting 100% in this game takes ample time, and copious amount of patience.

There are upgrades that can aid players along the way. Eventually I got the ability to jump, which is the only one that stayed with me constantly. There are a host of other abilities, but only one can be applied at any given time. They range from driving on water, to switching spin direction at will. It is best to figure out a play style, and experiment with each one before deciding on which to equip. Some challenges are also better suited for certain abilities than others.

The cut scenes are nearly worth the price of admission.

The cut scenes are nearly worth the price of admission.

The best part about Roundabout though is the cut scenes. I feel ridiculous even saying that, but No Goblin has crafted a highly entertaining story presented in cheesy fashion that would feel right at home in a Twisted Pixel game. The dialogue is genuinely hilarious, and even features cameos by some of gaming’s more recognizable faces. The cheeky 70’s influenced story is the best thing about Roundabout, and is worth the price of admission alone. That 4:3 intro is simply the best.

Roundabout is a weird game. I found myself struggling to play it at times, but always willing to go back. The cut scenes are truly worth the price of admission, but the game play left me a bit cold at times. The Xbox One doesn’t have nearly as many indie titles flooding its store as the PS4, so a new addition is always welcome, especially when it involves a rotating limo and FMV cut scenes to drive forward the ridiculous plot that could only make it onto a major console in this day and age.

Review copy of game provided by publisher.

Good

  • The cut scenes are amazing
  • A unique and fun visual style

Bad

  • The premise loses appeal quickly
  • Could use more variety
6

Decent

Ken McKown
Ken is the Editor-in-Chief of this hole in the wall and he loves to troll for the fun of it. He also enjoys long walks through Arkham Asylum and the cool air of Shadow Moses Island. His turn-ons include Mortal Kombat, Metal Gear Solid and StarCraft.
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