Summary

Review Price to be confirmed

Xbox One Exclusive
Sunset Overdrive release date 28/10/2014

What is Sunset Overdrive?

One of the Xbox One’s most interesting console exclusives on show at E3 2014 was the anarchic and seriously OTT open-world third-person shooter Sunset Overdrive. It’s sure to polarise opinion with its brash graphics and gameplay. Some will love it, others won’t want to go near it.


Set in the fictional Sunset City in the year 2027 you are a FizzCo employee who has to rid the world of humans mutated by your company’s new energy drink, Overcharge Delirium XT. That’s about as far as the plot goes, but Sunset Overdrive isn’t really a game with plot at its heart.

Sunset Overdrive is a game about style and excess. You control your character by jumping, wall running, grinding rails and zip-lining your way through the colourful world, all the while manically shooting at anything that moves using a wide array of long-range and melee weaponry.

Fans of Jet Set Radio Future will immediately be at ease with the fluid movement of Sunset Overdrive, while its gameplay also owes a lot to Dead Rising. From the outside it looks tough, but it’s actually a lot easier than it looks to pull off some impressive moves, although shooting adds another element of complexity that takes a little getting used to. If you want to do well you’ll have to spend much of your time performing acrobatics in the air, out of reach of the hordes of mutants, raining down terror from up high. 

Hectic doesn’t begin to describe the eight-player co-op mayhem of the Chaos Squad demo we played at E3 2014.

Tasked to protect vats of OverCharge juice we started by setting up traps and waiting for the first wave of opponents to arrive. Once they do the screen becomes a riot of explosions and colours. Sunset Overdrive is loud in every sense of the word.

Weapons range from the usual AK-47 machine gun to an exploding teddy bear launcher and, in a nod to Shaun of the Dead, a vinyl record flinger. Play with extra style or combo-kill enemies and your Amp meter will rise giving you access to special abilities for traversing Sunset City or adding elemental effects to your weapons. Once earned these Amp abilities will stay with your character whether you’re playing single or multiplayer.

Developer Insomniac has opted for a colourful, comic-book inspired look for Sunset Overdrive and it works well with the manic gameplay-style. There have been a few grumbles from some gamers that it won’t run in full-HD. Instead Sunset Overdrive will run in 900p, 30fps and I don’t think this will be a problem.

I did not find any issue with the resolution or frame rate regardless of the size of explosions or having multiple enemies on screen at once. The cartoony graphics are also more forgiving. All in all, Sunset Overdrive looks fantastic.

First Impressions

There’s never a quiet moment in Sunset Overdrive, and while I have some concerns that the game will lose its quirky and frantic appeal quickly, it certainly looks like it will be a blast while it lasts.

Next read: Batman Arkham Knight

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