Review of The Riftbreaker. Space RTS for those who like to pump a hundred or two hours into the game

Review of The Riftbreaker. Space RTS for those who like to pump a hundred or two hours into the game


After several years of development, The Riftbreaker came out of Steam Early Access , in which the player has to survive on a distant planet, along the way building up the base and fighting off the raids of the local fauna. And all this in an open world. Is it worth it to devote time to this project against the backdrop of an abundance of games in the fall? Now let’s figure it out.

And more importantly, we have already described the main concept and basic mechanics of the game, and therefore we will not retell them. Let’s talk about how interesting the final version turned out.

Jump in the portal and we’ll begin
The main thing that stuns The Riftbreaker is the scale. The authors did not just take and mix elements of different genres, they expanded them in breadth and depth.

So, the game has four biomes (tropics, sands, swamps and volcanoes), each with its own set of flora, fauna and various fantastic life forms, like intelligent mushrooms. All biota is not just a decoration, but part of a well-written game lore and all of its types, from a small bush to a huge queen nest, have 10 research levels.

The more you interact with them (kill or research with a bioscanner), the more you learn and get different bonuses (more resources for killing, higher damage, vulnerability to weapons, and so on). And if everything is clear with the fauna, then the aggressive flora is an unusual gameplay mechanic in The Riftbreaker, especially noticeable in the swamp biome. His aggressive mycelium, shooting acid and filling everything in a row, has to be literally burned out.

Even the very basis of the location will be a problem. In an arid biome, quicksand will prevent you from turning around, and in a volcanic zone, a hot surface. And that’s not to mention the ubiquitous meteor and acid rains, earthquakes, sand and ion storms, the red moon, fog and other weather effects that affect gameplay.

The scale was also manifested in the size of the locations: here they are either large or huge – they are randomly generated and filled with content according to the biome. Therefore, even a small reconnaissance turns into a real hike and takes from half an hour.

Dig Shura, dig!
The resource base of The Riftbreaker is like in other economic strategies: 2 basic and 4 rare metals, plant and animal biomass, 4 unique minerals and, of course, electricity and water. All of them are used as the gameplay develops, so you have to get them.

Tower Defense and RTS prevail here – and this is the most boring part of the project. The problem is that most of the gameplay of the entire Riftbreaker is focused on the banal extraction of resources, around which everything else revolves.

No, the first 15-20 hours are very exciting to build up the main base, conduct research, increase all kinds of supplies, strengthen defenses and explore the world. But when nearby resources are exhausted, you have to go farther and farther for new raw materials, or even move to another location.

And here the construction turns into a routine: put mines, protect with towers, supply everything with electricity, build strong walls. For the sake of a small advance, you need to spend several hours, and for the fifth or tenth time it gets boring, whether you like it or not. And the tenth and even the twentieth time will definitely come, because each rare earth element or unique mineral opens in its own location and is available in a small amount.

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