I have never hated a game that I also find very interesting, but somehow Riders Republic has achieved this. Ubisoft’s open world action sports game starts with a promising premise: you, a silent action sports enthusiast, have arrived at Knights Ridge, a holy land full of paper shredders. Somehow, in violation of all national park laws and state regulations, national parks in multiple states—including Mammoth and Yosemite—have been reoccupied by the extreme sports industry with the clear purpose of dragging the butt.
Rider’s Republic’s map looks as good as any other Ubisoft open world—that is, it is visually simple, but does not have much meaningful or interesting depth. Huge mountains and deep valleys swallowed the map, bringing a great sense of verticality to the entire game. Multiple biomes-forests, deserts, snow, etc.-when you move back and forth between targets, you can add visual diversity well.
Moreover, you go back and forth a lot. Although Rider’s Republic offers a large collection of items in its maps-such as spotting landmarks or bursting balloons (…for some reason?)-the world is not that attractive. I rarely feel the need to go off the beaten track, because my curiosity has never been rewarded, except for trivial collectibles—a way to cross out endless boxes on various lists. After a while, I got bored of running around and started traveling fast to save time. The map of Riders Republic is very large, so it may take more than 10 minutes to play a game from one end to the other. Since that journey is always boring, I think it’s best to skip it. This beautiful world is just a setting and not something I want to participate in.
Whether I am in a time trial or in a large-scale competition of 64 people, running at a very fast speed on the many roads and trails in the open world, sometimes it feels like a 90-degree drop, which captures the fact that few games have Sense of speed. Every time I shine in the game, I feel that I can hardly control it. A wrong move will bring me into disaster, which is exciting. This is especially true in wing suit and rocket suit competitions, where you need to sail through the air to pass checkpoints. In these fierce competitions, you fly up and down at completely different altitudes, constantly encountering dangers and collisions with the surrounding ground and mountains. I like to compete in games and test my skills as Riders Republic slowly increases its challenges. It always feels great to be in the first place.
I also like competitions where various actions and sports of Riders Republic are mixed together. Many long-distance races force you to alternate between bicycles, snowboards, wingsuits and rocket suits in flight to test your skills and punish every mistake. As my performance in the competitions gets better and better, these competitions have continuously promoted my understanding of the riding system in a satisfying way. When it is unlocked, I always seize the opportunity to play a new multisport competition.
In the Skills Challenge, you try to get points by completing aerial maneuvers, but it is hardly that attractive. Completing these skills will not make people feel rewarding, and you have no motivation to master complex movements, because you only need to perform the same basic skills over and over to be successful. I often fight desperately in these competitions, so I rarely know what skills I will use when hitting a ramp. The stunt challenge failed to test my knowledge or skills through the stunt system, which caused me to ignore the system to a large extent. Especially considering the number of various tricks in Riders Republic—each sport has dozens or more—when I ran out of more standard competitions, this eventually became a repetitive difficulty.
After almost every race, you will get some new bikes or vehicles. With this steady stream of new equipment, I will never be attached to any piece of equipment anymore. Therefore, I was not forced to search for my equipment. I just chose the one with the most quantity and started my day. These are small complaints in the overall situation, but in the “Knight Republic” game, these small problems have been bothering me.
Riders Republic’s biggest problem is How it betrays everything good About non-stop annoying gameplay. This game is desperate to make you think it’s cool. At any time, it bombards you with endless scripts, full of incredibly annoying characters, and spews a series of annoying jokes and single sentences. Some prominent choices include, “You are handling these events like ribs! Nummies”, and you are breaking “a whole new level”, repeating certain aspects of the game map in a non-skippable dialogue prompt that plays every time you scroll. Some parts or travel through the world. These lines weren’t cool the first time; after a dozen times, they couldn’t stand it anymore.
The original soundtrack has the same problem. Incredibly, it covers the song “Gangster Paradise” by Culio, softly sung by Les Ukulélés Girls and starring artist Zita. This is really one of the worst songs I have ever heard. Add Wiz Khalifa’s selected clips from Green Day’s latest album “Black and Yellow”, and you will have a soundtrack that is completely out of touch with today’s popular music. The soundtrack is a big sticking point for me, because Riders stuffed it into your throat. There are different types and radio stations in the game, but once you enter the game, the game will have a predetermined soundtrack. Participate in more than a dozen games, you are likely to listen to the same three songs more than a dozen times.
Rider’s Republic provides an experience that, although fun and exciting, penetrates my skin in a way that other games don’t. It did one or two things that I thought were great, but it didn’t exceed the things I couldn’t stand. In the end, Riders Republic died of one million layoffs. I can only hear the same song or dialogue many times before it ceases to be annoying and becomes annoying. “Riders Republic” is a unique and interesting action sports game, missed opportunities-I have missed this type of game since I was a kid. This is a game that I don’t think I will return anytime soon.