There are few words that can be toxic to a game’s survival out in the wild. Dated. Clunky. Unplayable. For a certain segment of the gamer community, though, the absolute worst that can be levied against an aspiring title is simply ‘generic’. Unfortunately, as I went through an alpha preview for Strike Game’s Final Rush, that’s the word that permeated the experience; even the title itself is bland and, perhaps, uninspired. That’s not to say there’s nothing of promise here, but if Final Rush hopes to make an impression, there’s a lot of work yet to be done to get there.
I’ll be fair; Final Rush is an alpha-stage game now, and riddled with messages asking for feedback, improvements, and Strike Games clearly knows that, as it stands, they’re not pushing a groundbreaking thing. That said, where it lies now, most everything about the game is generic and flat. Basic gameplay goes something like this: an arena is chosen (from a list of three possible, right now), and the game begins. You select one of three blandly-named weapons (military shotgun, military assault rifle, military battle rifle) and then you face off against wave after wave of largely-plain robotic enemies who march inexorably towards you, swinging with melee attacks when they’re in range and prattling on in flat electronic tones that cycle through their repertoire of “Ow,” “Damnit,” and “Error”.
Perhaps the biggest downfall of the early preview is the lack of online multiplayer, which I sincerely hope (and have to imagine) is planned for the final release; as a single-player game, Final Rush definitely falls flat, but there’s potential for good times with more players. A big part of the game’s premise, after all, relies on speed in taking out each wave of enemies in order to earn ‘Rush Tier’ prizes. These are time-sensitive rewards including additional lives, special ammo or grenades, and other goodies that reward your team for clearing waves as quickly as possible, starting with Tier Three and counting down to a bonus-less Tier Zero.
I’ll say one more time that I do, in fact, understand that Final Rush is still in an early stage, and there’s likely a lot of changes in store before this game is fully realized; however, at $14.99 for the early access, I’m very hard-pressed to say it’s something worth buying into until some of those come down the pipeline. I see some potential here for a great multiplayer experience, but what I’ve had a chance to dive into only hints at something fun, rather than actually being something fun on its own merit at this time. I do look forward to keeping tabs on the process, and perhaps, by the time it’s a completed project, I’ll be able to turn around and review a pretty cool FPS. Until then, however, I’d have to recommend passing on the alpha and waiting for that completion.