GamesRadar is supported by its target audience. If you shop via links on our website, we may receive an affiliate commission. Find out more

Find out how we got on with Square Enix’s new shooter before our full Outriders review comes out next week

12 hours after the campaign started, Outriders feels like defining a mixed bag not only in its identity as a mix of ideas borrowed from a number of other titles, but also in its overall entertainment value, its quality as it progresses the opening chapter of the core campaign fluctuates

The charged cover shooter fight, for example, is mostly fantastic, comparable to playing Gears of War on Hyperspeed, however, the bleak story on your face is nowhere near as entertaining and often leads you into cutscenes in which the only one Saving is a handful of dry-humorous, winking remarks made by your customizable super- Soldier

The good news is that I still have fun with Outriders, so far down in his prey-filled rabbit hole, in fact, despite some rough edges, there is a lot of value to be gained from People Can Fly’s co-op looter shooter – and not just from those elusive legendary weapons

Let’s start with this story we wouldn’t blame you for completely forgetting about it since playing the Outriders demo back in February.As a grunt on the front lines of humanity’s final space colonization effort, your character is given a mysterious storm on the ground extraterrestrial planet Enoch will use superhuman powers before being thrown into cryostasis for 30 odd years and waking up to a war between what is left, your army and various insurgent enemy factions

It’s a backdrop of familiar science fiction ingredients, but with hokey voice acting, clichéd (and sometimes tasteless) lyrics, and a plethora of cutscenes with enough shaky camera to make even Paul Greengrass feel uncomfortable, this recipe doesn’t make for a particularly appealing meal on the upside, People Can Fly’s dedication to its story means that even the smallest of side missions have a decent amount of universal context behind them, eliminating the vague, narrative informal search you see in other titles like Destiny 2 might find wisely avoided

For many people, however, the Outriders story is just the justification for mowing down an endless number of bad guys through their mix of third-person cover shoot and class-based warfare, which is exactly what makes the game’s tendency to continually separate from its prosaic plot obsessed so frustrating, but when People Can Fly lets you past its series of semi-open zones, Outriders quickly shows its strengths as a meaty, fast-paced looter with surprising levels of depth

Picking up where I left off at the end of the three hour demo with my Devastator class, I have now evolved my character to the point where I have well mastered his many skills, traits, and weapons that Outriders’ progression system is both quick, to give your hero new active and passive powers, and flexible, so that you can tailor them to a particular style of play.This flexibility is thanks to a skill tree that gradually divides each class into three sub-categories, although the game never forces you To pick one right now, for example, I’m focusing on increasing my destroyer’s damage recovery and tentatively targeting the firepower-enhancing Vanquisher subclass, but I could always focus on the more spherical armor role of the Guardian

It was fun to think carefully about my combat strategy this way, and the ability to reset your spec points whenever you want encourages constant experimentation in this regard and switching between different styles of play as the Outriders’ difficulty curve continues Bending Up With an ever-growing number of enemies (including some really tough boss fights), the need to master the rhythms of battle of your class is also crucial, while the moment-to-moment satisfaction of wielding these superhero-like skills has not yet lost its cathartic attraction

Likewise, Outriders’ loot system is an equally compelling source of its long-term appeal. High-level drops are fairly regular, and while the game’s gunplay isn’t quite as precise or punchy as that of its peers, the distinctive (albeit visually unattractive) Legendary weapons give combat a healthy sense of momentum once you manage to get your hands on one, however, the nuclear weapon types (shotgun, assault rifle, LMG) don’t differ much in their categories, meaning that a sniper rifle is you at level Pick up 15, looks and works largely like one you found at level five, of course, there’s a lot more high-level loot to be picked up So we hope the best is saved for later chapters of the campaign

One aspect of Outriders that hasn’t quite caught on yet is its visual style.While I was hoping the demo’s drab, gray opening areas would be the introductory exception, the game’s graphics have grown alongside my adventures in not exactly enlarged in the new environments

It’s by no means a next-gen storefront, with flat textures and wobbly facial animations that already look dated, and only a few distant skyboxes that really please the eye, at least the game runs at a pretty steady 60 frames per second on PS5 PS5 runs smoothly while load times on Sony’s next-gen console are as fast as you’d hope Just don’t expect Outriders to amaze you with his portrayal of the strange and unexpected

I’m not far enough into Outriders just yet to determine the sustainability of its long-term sea legs, but People Can Fly has promised plenty of meat to chew on in the high-risk, high-reward endgame missions known as Expeditions What I’ve played so far on Outriders is already pretty close to justifying the price of entry on launch day, as long as you’re willing to take on some of the smaller bits and pieces of the game under its RPG-infused combat

Alternatively, check back in next week for our full review of Outriders where we can give you a fuller look at the entire experience and if it’s worth your time and money

For more information, check out the best Call of Duty games you can play right now or our guide to the best class of Outriders in the video below

I’m a GamesRadars Features Writer, blaming me for putting as many of my words on the Internet as possible, including reviews, previews, interviews, and more. Happy Internet!

GamesRadar is part of Future plc, an international media group and leading digital publisher. Visit our company page

Future Publishing Limited Kai House, The Ambury,
BA1 1UA All rights reserved England and Wales company number 2008885

Review of Outriders

Weltnachrichten – AU – Review of Outriders in progress: “A meaty, fast-paced looter with surprising depth”