Rage 2 Xbox One X Review

Rage 2 is a fun insane shooter that centers on causing big explosions and killing lots of enemies.

By Grayshadow, Posted 16 May 2019

The original Rage didn't live up to expectations. Marketed as an extensive narrative-driven FPS experience the game was negatively criticized for having a short and lukewarm campaign but had strong gameplay mechanics. Rage 2 is an improvement from the first game, focusing on high intense gameplay with a moderate improvement in its narrative. However, the oversaturation of optional tasks dominates the core campaign's meager offerings. With the game overrun with tedious busy work until the next part of the campaign is triggered. Rage 2 has its ups and downs but overall it's a solid FPS that is a step up from the previous entry.

Rage 2,NoobFeed,Bethesda,

Rage 2 takes place years after the events of the first game. The Authority, a dictatorial military organization, is seeking to dominate the Earth using hordes of mutant soldiers armed to the teeth with advanced technology. Rage 2 starts with The Authority launching an attack on your home base of Vinewood. Walker takes on the role as the last Ranger, specialized soldiers tasks with completing suicidal missions. What follows is a series of similarly styled missions as you attempt to construct a superweapon called Project Dagger to eliminate The Authority once and for all.

Restarting Project Dagger requires 3 specific people, each of which requires some matter of jobs to be completed. The player is sent on a series of errands until the next part of the campaign is ready. None of the characters, even the main antagonist General Cross, stand out. It's an improvement from the original and has a much more solid conclusion but does the bare minimum. 

The campaign mixes together a large amount of free roam activities and a dash of core missions to help build your arsenal of weapons and gear while weakening The Authority, bandits, and mutants hold over everyone. There's a lot to do in Rage 2 but it's mostly the same things. Clear bandit camps, open Arks, kill mutants, destroy authority sentries, find missing rangers, and finally scavenge fallen meteors. The developers did try to mix up these activities by providing mostly distinct arenas to fight in but you'll be performing the same tasks for 90% of the game. All while opening purple supply contains and Ark chests.

Rage 2,NoobFeed,Bethesda,

This wouldn't be a problem if the game provided unique core campaign missions, but these are rare. Only a handful of missions diverge from activities found in the overworld. Rage 2 attempts to combat this tedium by providing interesting areas ranging from swamps to giant deserts but you'll still end up doing the same thing regardless of which area you explore. Breaking the sense of wonder of finding something new.

Rage 2 offers an extensive list of unlocks to keep players invested in completing missions. Most unlocks are earned by unlocking Arks, which grant the player access to new weapons and abilities. These are all optional and the player will need to explore and talk to characters to find their locations. Every weapon and ability can be further upgraded but items can only be enhanced by purchase schematics from vendors. Projects help increase Walker's abilities even further but are linked to specific types of experience earned by completing particular activities within the world. Everything is color coated so you can easily tell which activities are for what project.

Unlike the Nanotrite powers, the project abilities are simply quality-of-life improvements such as the ability to reload while sprinting. Many of these abilities make the game significantly easier and less vexing. One of the most infuriating task players will have to engage in is locating supply crates and Ark chests. These are everywhere and necessary to progression, but without the radar, you'll find yourself wandering around looking for that last chest.

Rage 2,NoobFeed,Bethesda,

Rage 2 does maintain a heavy emphasis on driving. The map is huge and walking is not an option. With your vehicle fully up-gradable with different types of weapons and other cars ability either by winning races or finding them in the world. Driving is serviceable but drifting works differently, with more emphasis put on using the boost to regain control of your vehicle when drifting. Strangely, the developers only allow fast travel between towns and not completed camps. At first, this seems like a minor issue until you have to travel thousands of kilometers for a specific location from the nearest town despite clearing out a bandit camp much closer to the area.

Rage 2 does have a healthy selection of enemies to face. With an array of mutants, bandits, heavily mutated creatures, and more to kill. While the weapons come in your standard shotgun, pistol, and rocket launcher it's executing all the tools in your arsenal that makes these fights exciting. The enemies themselves each have unique fighting styles and use their sheer numbers to overwhelm the player. Forcing you to use everything in your disposal, fighting unfairly is encouraged as you'll have to think outside the box if you wish to complete the game on Nightmare.

Graphically, Rage 2 is impressive. With every character model heavily detailed to near realism and the world teeming with variety. The lighting and smoke design are especially impressive, with different light sources changing the mood of the entire area. Some bright and colorful and other time times incredibly tense as tiny rays of sunshine bleeding through the cracks deep underground. I did wish that a flashlight option existed as dark areas, especially during nighttime, can make things hard to see.

The towns are excellently designed, with a dense array of characters that makes each area feel distinct. Bounty boards, vendors, and people wandering around make each town feel alive. A definite step up from Rage's hollow trading posts.

Rage 2,NoobFeed,Bethesda,

Rage 2 does have a lot positive features. Incredible enemies, a large diverse world, and plenty of ways to kill makes playing through this insane adventure a thrill. But these positive features are weakened due to tedious activities, similar mission structures, and lots of grinding. It's a drastic improvement from the first game and focuses more on having a good time. Rage 2 is a fun insane shooter that centers on causing big explosions and killing lots of enemies.
 

Adam Siddiqui, NoobFeed
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General Information

Rage 2

80/100

Platform(s): Xbox One, PS4, PC
Publisher(s): Bethesda
Developer(s): Avalanche Studios
Genres: First-person shooter
Themes: Apocalypse
Release Date: 2019-05-14

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