Every now and again you come across a game that gives you a new experience. Whether you’re playing PES or FIFA you’re playing a football game, when you play Halo or Call of Duty you’re playing a FPS etc. The experiences are similar even if you love playing one game over another. Roundabout attempts to spin things out of control by meshing together a spinning limousine with a 70’s B movie containing real life actors.
In a crazy nutshell you play Georgio Ramos a spinning limousine driver (many of the characters refer to you being the best at what you do) that takes part in an open world driving puzzle scenario. You pick up passengers, drive across secret collectables and take on various missions circa 1977. At the start of a missing or during a mission the story is told via a series of real actors talking to you as they (usually) sit in the back of your limousine. Throughout the whole of Roundabout your limousine constantly spins around either clockwise or anti-clockwise.
On the open world map you have to drive/spin round finding markers that when reached start a mission. The world is full of obstacles which need to be navigated around. At the start you’ll find your limousine exploding a lot simply because you need to get used to the spinning controls. Eventually you’ll be able to at least circumvent around the least annoying obstacles such as parked cars and trees but due to the nature of Roundabout you’ll still continue to explode. Luckily there are many checkpoints contained within a mission so don’t worry about damaging your limousine too much unless you’re trying to tick off the various mission checkboxes i.e. completing a mission within a certain time, not killing anyone, not exploding etc. There are power ups which multiply your score/fare though make sure you don’t hit anything besides people otherwise your score multiplier will be lost. As you make money through fares and find cash you can buy properties which ultimately garner more money to spend on other things. You have various upgrades to use such as one that slows down time.
Navigating around the open world of Roundabout is fairly straightforward, you rarely become lost which would have had a detrimental effect on the experience. The humour/acting is very similar to the Napoleon Dynamite whilst your character never actually speaks, but I guess as a glorified cab driver you need to be a good listener. The world is full of obstacles and you’ll often just try to bulldoze your way through to the next checkpoint so you don’t need to replay a certain section again. This may remove some of the strategy but it’s still enjoyable exploding a lot and hitting the various pedestrians.
Whilst Roundabout is a short game if played straight through there are various modes that offer to change the experience but they don’t generally make Roundabout any more fun. Roundabout has various mini games to play with such as bouncing a ball on your limousine. All these mini games and missions have leaderboards which help add some longevity to the proceedings. Obviously if you get close to the top of a leaderboard you’ll want to play that mission/mini-game at least one more time. Graphically it’s very simple on the eye though it makes it easy to identify what to hit and not to hit. The full motion videos are well acted and you’ll be laughing quite a lot as you progress through Roundabout.
Roundabout is a weird yet enjoyable concoction of various genres that result in an amusing if flawed experience. The spinning limousine gimmick will wear thin after a while but luckily this is interspersed by some quite funny and well acted scenes. The plot is fairly nonsensical but it definitely engages which is quite something considering how strange Roundabout can be. It’s a short game which may not have a great deal of replay value but Roundabout is a game you’ll remember for mostly good if limited reasons.
REVIEW CODE: A complimentary Sony Playstation 4 code was provided to Bonus Stage for this review. Please send all review code enquiries to firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Gameplay - /10
Graphics - /10
Sound - /10
Replay Value - /10
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