Retro City Rampage DX is a labor of love by Brian Provinciano and his small team over at Vblank Entertainment. At first glance it looks like a GTA ripoff (no, not the 3D ones, I’m talking about the original top-down ones you youngings) but it’s so much more than that. If you grew up in the 80’s and 90’s like I did, then you’ll find yourself laughing and wowing at the plethora of pop culture references and nods to other games. If you weren’t you’ll still probably like the game, but the story will seem all over the place. Well, the story is all over the place either way, but you’ll be able to appreciate it more if you understand the material that’s being referenced.
If you don’t care about story then that’s fine because the gameplay is fun as hell. You’ll find yourself stealing cars, dealing goods, taking out foes in fast shootouts, and even stomping on enemies to rack up combos. You can quit missions or side missions at any time and just free roam and cause havoc in the entire city after it’s unlocked upon game completion. Throughout gameplay there are many other unlockables you can discover like new hairstyles, tattoos, and arcade cabinets which are clever recreations of other indies games. The arcade cabinets in particular I found to be a very cool touch. RCR:DX easily has hours upon hours of missions and side missions as well as New Game + for people who love punishment, like Will.
There’s no real lack of consequence when you die which is great and helps keep the frantic arcade pace speeding along. Similar to other games like Slime-san, RCR:DX offers many different display modes that harken back to NES, SNES, GameBoy, and more. I honestly don’t know what else to say other than that this game is an absolute blast to play with a pulsing soundtrack underneath hilarious dialogue with nods to games and movies of yore. This game delivers both a high level of polish as and high replay value, which makes it a no-brainer in my opinion. And if you don’t have a Switch don’t fret because you can pick it up on another platform, although it admittedly feels like it finally found it’s home.