The Red Solstice is a title that has all the tropes of a classic science-fiction story that are mixed with the generic mechanics of a top-down tactical shooter. The result is a experience that any gamers could enjoy, regardless of their genre preference.
Some might act like snobs because of its lack of originality, but many will appreciate it for its creativity in a familiar setting. The Red Solstice is a classic example of an indie title that was created by a team that utilized their limited resources to its full potential.
The story is set on Mars, which has now been colonized by humans who escaped a dying Earth. During one of the largest storms (called the Red Solstice), one of the human colonies goes dark. In response, a marine unit is deployed to investigate only to discover the colony has been attacked. It’s a race against time to stop the epidemic before all hope for humanity is lost.
Anyone who is big into SciFi or has played games like Gears of War will be all too familiar with the story. It’s a classic one about humanities need to survive while attempted to find refugee in a new world populated by a hostile creatures. Even though it may feel cliche, it’s so well executed that it still gets your attention.
On the gameplay aspects, no level will feel the same and players will need to change their style to overcome the many challenges. This includes developing new strategies and better equipping the squad. It’s because of this setup that players are advised to complete the campaign before getting into the multiplayer game.
The multiplayer is not something gamers could get into right away unless they have developed their skills in the single player story. The multiplayer is more then a feature but also a continuation of the main story that transitions flawlessly. Once a player is ready, the many maps and gameplay modes will truly test their skills.
However experiencing the multiplayer is only possible if they find a server. Given the lack of a dependable community, the concept of a multiplayer feels wasted unless one has friends who also have the game. This is not something that could be blamed on the developers but this is the risk with new IP’s.
That being said, The Red Solstice itself is not a perfect game as it does have a fair share of issues. The biggest problem is there was no saving in the single player campaign, which forces players to complete the level or to lose all progress. Also there several glitches and bugs that were encountered during our play-through.
Despite its shortcomings, Ironward did an amazing job given their limited resources. Any gamer could respect a studio that is able to produce a work of brilliance with a small team and limited support. This is a team to keep an eye on in the near future.
The Red Solstice takes a classic SciFi story then blends it with the gameplay of a top-down tactical shooter and the result is a memorable experience that any gamer could enjoy.
Final Score: 8/10
Disclaimer: Evolve PR provided the game used for this review.