Outriders: Worldslayer Game Review | Games

Platforms: Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, PS5, PS4, PC

Outriders: world killer is stupid – and that’s a compliment. A significant expansion of the 2021 original Riders, developer People Can Fly’s return to the devastated world of the colony of Enoch is a bizarre pipe dream of ambitious sci-fi ideas, ridiculous B-movie tropes, and jaw-dropping shooter action. It packs in gorgeous new places and over-the-top powers alongside cartoonish gore and some of the funniest, most earnest dialogue this side of a ’90s Sci-Fi Channel miniseries. , in a corny way.

world killerThe story is set after the events of the original campaign, with the mysterious Anomaly causing the player’s customizable character to awaken from a decades-long cryostasis nap with superpowers now threatening to destroy the entire planet. Meanwhile, new ultra-villain Ereshkigal – named after the Mesopotamian Queen of the Dead, so you know she’s bad news – leads a disruptive new faction called the Insurgents. Think too much about everything that’s going on, or why, and it may fall apart, but go with the flow and it’s hugely fun.

While you will be able to take an existing character through the world killer campaign, it’s also possible to jump right into it by creating a new one with maxed stats to match the higher tier content. It’s a cool trick we’ve seen used in the likes of World of Warcraft and other long-running games – and a welcome one, making the expansion inviting for newcomers or dedicated fans.

While the story campaign itself is relatively lean – most players will likely get through it in eight hours or less; probably much less for seasoned players who have played Riders since launch – the expansion’s real weight lies in how it opens up character growth and provides more endgame content.

The combination of the various new systems allows for a considerable variety of character builds, with a level of flexibility and potential for specialization that will appeal to even the most stat-obsessed player.

Rather than introducing new combat classes, world killer allows players to expand the existing four – Devastator, Pyromancer, Technomancer, and Trickster – with Pax trees. These are separate from the existing subclasses, requiring dedicated Pax Points to level up, but allow for some pretty fun variations. For example, the Pyromancer Pax tree unlocks new identities of “pyromaniac” and “gunblazer”, the latter providing skills that massively increase your ammo capacity and improve weapon damage and effects, turning you into a fiery explosion of almost endless bullets. I told you that was stupid.

Outriders: world killer

This is bolstered by Ascension skills, allowing for more granular, incremental changes to characters over time – like reducing the cooldown of special abilities – and Apocalypse gear, aka items that feature a third slot of mod for even more customization. The combination of the various new systems allows for a considerable variety of character builds, with a level of flexibility and potential for specialization that will appeal to even the most stat-obsessed player. All of this combined makes character builds more powerful than ever, allowing you to storm Enoch down enemies that would have already used up an entire ammo magazine in one shot.

It feels like the big draw is supposed to be the “Trials of Tarya Gratar,” a kind of late-game randomized dungeon run that emphasizes the game’s loot and shooting identity, with plenty of replay value planned for those hunting down the highest tier gear. However, given the multiplayer in Riders is entirely optional, constantly replaying in hopes of getting a rarer weapon or piece of armor to show off isn’t quite the same draw as in live service games such as Fate. Although Trials offers branching routes, it can still get quite repetitive.

It is also undeniable that, despite the additions, world killer is still Riders basically, flaws and all. The general formula continues to weave its way through fairly linear maps, with recognizable combat zones before a shot is fired by the clutch of waist-high cover points that populate them. Weapons still often seem out of balance, with guns possessing the “leech life” ability being a near-necessity to maintain health and survive the game, rendering most others effectively useless. Plus, despite the customization options brought by the new systems, it’s all too easy to land on a skill set that feels comfortable and never have a reason or incentive to change them again.

All of this is compounded by the fact that it has been a full year since Riders himself went out, and bar the new horizon updated in November 2021 – which focused more on World Quests, loot, and balance adjustments – this is the first major content update. Whereas world killer brings a lot to the table technically, it doesn’t seem dense enough to bridge the gap – indeed fans of the genre may think it’s a season update at best, rather than an extension or a complete overhaul. What’s here is solid, but it’s unlikely to convince anyone other than the existing devotees.