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Overpass Review: Trials Meets Puzzle Games Meets Racing Games

Overpass

Overpass Review: Trials Meets Puzzle Games Meets Racing Games

Bigben loves to tackle (and publish) unique digital sports that many would consider niche, and their latest effort is no different. Overpass focuses on the world of extreme off-road “racing” where the environment is just as much of a competitor as the other drivers. It’s almost like a puzzle game mixed with Trials and a racing game. In other words, the pitch is forget what you know about racing, as the new title from Zordix Racing pushes you past those boundaries and asks you to be ready to tackle the track in a way that has rarely been available in any other racing game.

(By the way, this is an Epic Game Store exclusive for one year — obviously that does not apply to PS4 and Xbox One — and I was playing the PC version for this review.)

What I Like – Overpass Review

Career Mode

Although the sport of extreme off-road racing/traversing is different than what I usually experience in my racing games, the career mode should still feel familiar to most people who have the same background as me. This will be especially true if you have played titles like the F1 series from Codemasters or the MXGP series from Milestone.

You enter career mode as a young driver looking to make a name for himself and are hoping to do so on the track(s). The better you do, and the more maturity and talent you display out there, the more sponsors will start to take notice. You want them to notice, as having the option to sign a contract with sponsors affords you the chance to upgrade your buggy or ATV.

These upgrades make a huge difference in your vehicle’s ability to not only perform but absorb the damage that is inflicted upon it during the experience of the rough and rocky terrain on each course. And trust me, the damage is real, and it is sustained damage throughout. Either you pay the money to fix the issues, or your vehicle is a liability going into the next competition.

As your career progresses, you will have the option to upgrade vehicles, as mentioned before, or buy new ones straight up. You also have the chance to change your livery and upgrade your helmet along the way. Of course, these changes and upgrades cost money. That is why performing well, earning money and attracting strong sponsors is so very important to the upward trajectory of your career.

There is quite a bit of depth to the career mode in Overpass and it all flows together pretty darn well. For fans of the standard racing genre, it may be a bit difficult to adjust to this style of competition, but if you keep an open mind there is a different sort of experience to be had here.

Controls

In a game like Overpass, the control system is of the utmost importance, and thankfully Zordix Racing absolutely nails it. The controls are very intuitive and they allowed me to feel connected to even the most unique detail of the racing surfaces, which is extremely impressive. In a title like this, the control system usually struggles to keep up with the nuances and minutia of the environment, which makes the system created here even more impressive.

Overpass review

Overpass asks you as a player to understand the environment and not just rip through it with speed. You need to understand your approach. This means you need to understand your angles, decipher whether you need a locked or open differential, and you’ll need to choose between two-wheel or four-wheel drive because all these components have a serious impact on the outcome of your time and result.

The control system allows you to do all this with very little effort or concern, and it made me feel like any mistakes that I made were my own.

Much Better Looking Game Than I Expected

Upon loading up Overpass through my Epic Games account, I was amazed at how nice the game looked in 4K. It has the look and feel of a AAA game, which is impressive.

overpass review

When I started to see the vehicles grinding through the various courses, it became clear that the people behind the title have a strong passion for re-creating these unique types of environments for the masses. Whether climbing through the mountains, ripping through the sand or dirt, or bogging down in some impressive looking mud, the overall look and feel of Overpass pulled me into the world.

overpass review

From the vehicles to the environments to the surrounding areas, Zordix has created a living and breathing world that feels authentic. The amount of detail and connectivity that the game’s controls deliver, combined with the aforementioned graphics, helps Overpass stand out as a title full of realistic ambiance.

What I Don’t Like – Overpass Review

My Own Personal Enjoyment

Here is where I can’t separate my own feelings about this game from the sub-genre as a whole. I just did not have a whole lot of fun with the core Overpass experience. Now, this could be because I am not a fan of the genre and prefer my racing to be on a track with a car or bike. Here, everything is much more methodical, slow and about problem solving on some level. This is not necessarily an indictment of the game itself, but rather an honest relay of information that is more of a reflection of my own bias.

I tried every mode available, every camera angle available, and every vehicle available and still found myself struggling to really have fun in this world created by Zordix. I also utilized the training course, the tutorials and anything else that allowed me to be immersed in the world of mountain racing. In the end, it wasn’t for me.

This may not be the case with you, and if you have any interests at all in this sort of game, I highly recommend the title because the overall package that is delivered by Zordix is high quality.

Bottom Line

Overpass is one of the strangest reviews I have ever attempted and completed in my decade-plus of doing reviews. Zordix Games has delivered a quality title that is deep and interesting, but for me it was just not very fun.

The controls are solid, the environment is realistic, and the vehicles respond amazingly well to the various surfaces. If you have even the slightest interest in this sort of game, then Overpass is worth checking out.

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  1. Great review by Robert on this game and he answered my biggest question: Is there a fun factor with this? I'm sure there is especially for folks who have a vehicle like this and enjoy this activity (I'd personally enjoy it myself). But sitting in front of a console? Probably not so much. I'll be curious if any non-ATV owning gamer really has a huge fun factor with this game! Agreed, the graphics look really strong for a first edition.

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