Continuing our look at what’s shaking in the Early Access scene. Since you can’t review an unfinished game, we tell you what they’re about, what state they’re in and what you get for your early buy-in.

For this installment we welcome back MCP contributor and Chewer living legend The Rain Dog, who’s taken a look at a just recently released spiritual successor to the much-missed Road Rash… 

roadredLogoFrantic, frenetic and with an anarchic sense of fun to go with its speed, Road Redemption is a combat racing title from Darkseas Games that takes the kinetic motorbike battle racing of the 16-bit classic Road Rash and updates it with a HD sheen and modern physics engine making for a game that, while only just released in alpha on Steam Early Access, still provides an enjoyable time for the asking price.

I played the alpha build that precedes the current one recently released on Steam and even with a basic dozen or so races/levels with a limited number of maps and modes, still had a blast. Some modes have you simply racing while dodging oncoming traffic and swinging a baseball bat, another level gives you sticky bombs and asks you to take out a certain number of opponents within a time limit, while others increase the difficulty curve by altering elements such as oncoming traffic all bee-lining directly for you kamikaze-style. Another level conjures a giant swirling vortex in the sky that starts throwing cars down on you like some Roland Emmerich fever dream, then asks you to not only survive, but win the race to boot.

roadred_1As mentioned earlier, a solid physics engine gives all the high speed racing combined with some truly insane car wrecks and general vehicular mayhem all the more bone-crunching a weight than it may have had otherwise. All in all I played through the levels available twice and my inner child that had enjoyed Road Rash sessions at the arcade as a boy was thoroughly satisfied.

There’s the foundation for a really great arcade-style battle racing experience here, and even at this early stage there’s enough content to consider grabbing as is – especially when it goes on a Steam flash sale or daily deal. Definitely an Early Access title worth watching with excitement rather than trepidation, Road Redemption strikes me as a title we’ll be hearing mentioned more and more in the coming months.

This article is based on a pre-Steam Alpha version of Road Redemption provided by Darkseas Games.