It has been a very long time since I’ve played a more than lack luster game. Now, I understand engines that certain games are made in have certain limitations, I am a game designer myself. Sometimes though, you come across a game that is just so hard to continue to play. yet you want to keep trying. This is the case for Auto Age Standoff. The developers have coined this game to be like when Twisted Metal meets G.I. Joe. I can 100% see the G.I. Joe references here, whereas the characters feel like they were ripped out of a bad 1990’s Saturday morning cartoon. The Twisted Metal reference is where I begin to have an issue. Let’s get into this one then, shall we?
You can play as Val Vega, an ex vehicle, destruction driver who is now working to gather with one of the smartest AI units in the world to stop Dark Jaw. On the flip side of that coin, you could also choose to side with Dark Jaw if you do so choose. All the characters in the game, aside from the AI unit, seem to lack some sort of personality. The story to the game is simple, at least if you play on Val’s side. She is trying to avenge her sister’s death who she finds out was killed by Dark Jaw many years prior to the game’s timeline. Naturally she decides now to devote her time to fighting Dark Jaw and defeating him to avenge her sister. To do this, she must construct a vehicle that is strong enough to take on Dark Jaw’s army.
Right off the bat, the vehicle customization is very confusing, even after going through the tutorial. The screens are very cluttered and are given names that are confusing to follow. There are plenty of customization options though, so there wasn’t a lack of diversity there. If you wanted you could construct a smaller bodied car that had a bigger load out of explosives to take out the enemy. After you pick your weapons and car body you are thrust out onto the field to take on your mission. The driving controls have got to be my favorite part about Auto Age: Standoff. When they market this game they call it Twisted Metal meets G.I. Joe, but everyone failed to mention the very Rocket League-like driving commands. Soon enough I was zipping through the arena doing flips and barrel rolls to maneuver around the level. Surprisingly enough, the driving was actually pretty smooth. I didn’t run into many problems whilst navigating around the levels. The game does boast some of the funkiest, 80 and 90’s inspired original music though, kudos for that guys.
There is a multiplayer mode in this game as well. This is where the game shines, in my opinion. I was able to take place in a couple of tests where a bunch of players lobbied up and played the game together. There is one word that can be used to describe the multiplayer and that is, crazy. With each person being able to drive like they do, you have cars flying around everywhere shooting off plenty of explosives. The team based combat is a lot of fun, I enjoyed flipping around with my team and blasting the enemy cars out of the sky. I never did touch on the graphics of the game. The graphics remind me of an older Gamecube game by the name of Cel Damage, because of it’s cel shaded nature. I love this graphic style and it flows well with the aesthetic setting of the game.
With that being said, let’s talk about the enemy AI in this game. The enemy cars must have pigs driving in the front seat of each car. At times they wouldn’t even acknowledge my existence and other times they would just drive right around me like I was some sort of chopped liver. Some of the weapon animations were great and some lacked in detail, so there was really an even trade off with the weapons that you selected. Though, I will say, for being made with Unity, this game came out pretty well. Yes it has its flaws but this is something the developer can go back and learn from. Though in it’s current state, Auto Age: Standoff doesn’t have much to offer this genre of game, I believe that with some more TLC, it could evolve into something great.
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Review statement: The copy of this game was supplied by the developer for the sake of this review.