Iconic 80s anime Akira serves because the inspiration for RUNNER, a breakneck sci-fi arcade shooter which arguably tries to do an excessive amount of. As a smuggler in an aggressively hostile world, it’s essential to outrun robo-cops by means of seven dynamically generated levels, dual-wielding pistols when you difficulty a bit justice your whole personal. Cowboy Bebop’s Steve Blum stars in vibrant cutscene interludes, whereas the sport is bundled with a free visible novel that fleshes out the story – in addition to a soundtrack visualiser, with full PSVR2 compatibility.
It’s a cool bundle, then, however the precise sport throws far an excessive amount of at you from the beginning – introducing a dizzying array of methods and mechanics in an amazing “rub your stomach, pat your head” vogue. Along with wielding your weapons, you may as well launch missiles, lob grenades, choose totally different firing types, steer your bike, and generate a cyber-sword, which you need to use to deflect enemy projectiles. It’s a dizzying quantity of stuff, and we nonetheless discover ourselves urgent the unsuitable buttons even after a number of hours of play.
To make issues worse, the sport is punishing, to the purpose the place we swiftly realised we weren’t going to get very far with out turning invincibility on. You could find a circulate with apply, however the ranges are extraordinarily lengthy, and whereas there are beneficiant checkpoints, we discovered ourselves feeling bodily exasperated at occasions. We’re most likely simply not reduce out for the runner life-style, however there are some actually brutal design choices, like when wielding a weapon along with your left hand you may solely steer with the proper thumbstick; there’s a automobile you may unlock which lets you steer whereas holding your weapons, however you’ll have to wrap your head across the system as it’s earlier than you get there.
Along with the synth-driven metropolis pop soundtrack, the neon punk aesthetic seems very nice in 4K in PSVR2, and whereas the colourful colors might result in complications, we just like the chaotic, nearly violent nature of the presentation. However in the end, we discovered ourselves tiring of the overly lengthy ranges pretty shortly, and so the title lacks that sense of replayability that’s so elementary to really nice arcade releases.