Aug 8, 2016
When it comes to RIVAL FIRE, one isn’t left to guess what it is about for too long.
At it’s core, it incorporates the tried and true cover system style of gameplay. The player joins a team, and in its basest form, looks to take on waves of opponents while alternating shooting with ducking behind cover to prevent instant destruction.
The game helps one along to begin with, with plenty of vivid action. It starts sedately with target practice, which gives a crash course on how to use the bank of virtual touch controls nestled at the bottom of the playing area: firing, assorted weapons, ducking, darting, swinging view and the like. The controls feel easy, and make sense; the visual presentation works well. The game has 4 modes (Campaign, PVP, Survival and Co-op). Some are level-dependent, but Campaign opens up right away.
The action unfolds gradually, with the real action starting with relatively genteel enemy waves. The first few fire at one’s character, as one would expect, but as one goes on, the attackers get craftier and more varied. Soon, one encounters stuff liked lobbed grenades, which force one to use the aforementioned to dart. Snipers make an appearance too, along with transport vehicles and airborne enemy.
Success boils down to quick reactions: evaluate risks, shoot, duck, move and shoot some more. After a successful level, one garners game cash, which can be used to upgrade equipment and attributes, as well as XP.
Frankly, in the cover system genre, it can be a bit hard for a game to set itself apart; the segment is well explored, and there are more than a few iterations across platforms. RIVAL FIRE has an understandably familiar feel to it, but is still able to be a bit different when it comes to its use of angles to advance the gameplay.
The menu system feels somewhat cumbersome and even busy at times; the leveling concept could be simpler.
On the other hand, the gradual buildup does continually whet one’s action appetite, and the other modes (yes, PVP) are excellent variations.