Vigilante 8: Arcade

Vigilante 8: Arcade

I’ve got to stop retrying games that I vaguely remember from my childhood; turns out the memories are usually vague for a reason. Vigilante 8 itself was one of the boldest titles that previously slipped my mind, but I expect to forget this pseudo-remake in about a week. I call it a pseudo-remake because a) it selectively mixes in some elements of the game’s sequel, and b) a huge portion of the content has been stripped out. Characters are missing (but sold separately as DLC!), the number of maps is about half that of the original, and all objectives beyond “destroy opponents” have disappeared. On top of this, the catchy 70s grooves have been overwritten with soulless imitations of their former selves, the voice acting has chopped off the second half of “so bad, it’s good,” and the graphics have been “updated” to the standards of 2008, in all its muddy glory.

Vigilante 8 set itself apart with its fresh ideas and identity, so with those rendered irrelevant here, the only thing it has left is its vehicular combat. There were some odd control choices for advanced techniques in the 1998 release, but the vehicles controlled fine at a basic level. In this case, the driving physics are slippery and spasmodic, and the old directional combo system for special weapons has been replaced with an inconvenient charge system. Of course, blowing up cars with crazy weapons is inherently entertaining no matter how many roadblocks are in the way, particularly in multiplayer where chaos is welcome rather than frustrating. But there are plenty of better options if that’s all you’re looking for.

3.5/10
3.5/10

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