I’ve always been a big fan of racing games, I find it a genre I can Switch to when I just want to play something that isn’t taxing. One thing I have found with the Switch is there is a lack of decent racers. Well, here we have Rise: Race the Future, an arcade racer set in the not so near future.
The first thing that I want to mention is how Rise looks, and personally, I think it looks excellent. There are lots of colours that pop and the use of lighting on the tracks are brilliant, even the water effects on screen are spot on. Yes, it’s not up to the standards of some other racers like GT Sport or Forza Horizon 4, but there on much more powerful systems and Rise does make use of the power the Switch has and does it very well.
Performance wise I can’t complain either, every race I had was smooth and played out well, and I didn’t see or notice any drops in frame rate, so that made for a brilliant experience in my books.
There are a couple of modes available to play from in Rise, you have a challenges mode in which for each race there are certain objectives to complete, once you get these you can move onto the next lot of challenges. You have a standard ‘Championship’ mode, which does as it says on the tin, you compete in the championship series, and there’s ‘Time Attack’ where you try and set the best times on a course. Pretty standard modes and nothing too groundbreaking here.
There is a little bit of customisation available within the game. Before you race, you can select to change the colour of your car, whether you want auto-braking on and what level of braking, also how you want your boosts to work, whether it recharges over a certain speed, limit it to 3 boosts per race or recharge it through drifting, the choice is yours. This is a nice little addition, but again, it’s nothing groundbreaking.
I found a lot of the tracks and the races I was playing through quite inconsistent. There were times I would find myself miles out in front, and other times where I was struggling to not come last. There didn’t seem to be a balance between the races and the tracks were fairly inconsistent in length as well, which may be a moot point, but when each race turned up at 2 laps, and some were really short while others seemed to take an age to get around one lap it can throw you off your game a bit, especially as well when it came to the design of the tracks. Some of which I found brilliant, good racing tracks, while others were just a general mess and very hard to read or be able to tell which direction a bend is going in.
There was one track where at one point, you’re in a water part of it and there are massive rocks in the middle of it causing the track to split, going around either way caused no end of confusion, as one way would lead you into what looked like a turning, which was actually a dead end, but going at speed you wouldn’t be able to tell until it was too late, and the other way simply had you going every way but the way you wanted, There just seemed to be a clear lack of direction at times.
I’ll next go on and talk about the cars in the game, while they were stunning and there was a good level of detail in them, there were a lot of times where they acted as a turning jumbo jet or were simply unresponsive when trying to turn a corner. I would at times go to make a turn at the time I wanted to for the car to delay said turn by around 2 seconds, causing me to lose my driving line and either make the widest turn going or crash into a barrier, which then I was pretty much at the back of the race.
Sometimes I like to think that this was just me being useless when playing, but driving games are just one of those for me that clicks, I know how to drive, taking driving lines and when to brake etc, so I know 99.9999% that it wasn’t me.
It’s nice to see some more racers coming to the Switch and I have to admit that despite some of the issues, I did thoroughly enjoy playing the game and it will be one that I’ll come back to now and again. My biggest issue was the responsiveness of the cars and the delay in turning, I’m hoping that this can get patched. Rise is a beautiful game and if your a racer fan would say it does deserve your attention.