Rollerdrome – Review
Follow Genre: Third-person shooter, Skating game
Developer: Roll7
Publisher: Private Division, Take-Two Interactive
Platforms: PC, PS4, PS5
Tested on: PC

Rollerdrome – Review

Site Score
Good: Great art, Super unique gameplay
Bad: Controls on PC aren't great
User Score
(2 votes)
Click to vote
VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 9.5/10 (2 votes cast)

Some folks have rather grim predictions for the future. Sci-Fi stories show us images of intergalactic warfare, Earth ravaged by climate change or meteors that would kill us all. Rollerdrome instead asks: wouldn’t it be sick if we gave rollerskaters guns? Perhaps this could be considered just as dystopian when viewed in the right light, but it certainly makes for an exciting third-person shooter game that Roll7 is bringing to the table.


An opening text sets the scene for this grim future, where the titular Rollerdrome is the newest bloodsport enjoyed by the masses. With weapons in hand, rollerskaters enter the ring and try to survive against a group of heavily armored house players who attempt to murder them. Your player character Kara Hassan is the newest face on the scene. You start out in the preliminaries (cleverly disguising the tutorial as a plot element) and you’ll have to fight your way up to the champion level. As far as sports games go, it’s not the most original plot, but it works. Perhaps you might even find a sinister conspiracy hiding somewhere beneath the exciting sports game. It is a dystopian future, after all.


One regard in which Rollerdrome is definitely original is its art style. It might remind you of certain comics, with bold line art and a blocky way of coloring. Making this style come to life in moving images must have been a chore, but the developers pulled it off with impressive skill. The entire way through, from the cutscenes to the actual gameplay, Rollerdrome looks fantastic and runs smoother than butter. Throughout the tournament, you’ll find your way into different arenas. They’re all unique and veer away from the standard roller rink you’d expect, with the rounds taking place anywhere from the desert to on top of a snowy mountain.


In terms of the sound design, Rollerdrome doesn’t disappoint either. Heart-pumping synth music with heavy baselines is sure to get the adrenaline going while you’re in the ring, especially with each level having its own beat. While there’s not an abundance of voice acting (only in the cutscenes and for the occasional sports commentator), what is present is exceedingly well done.


What makes this game stand out the most is its unique gameplay. Rollerdrome is a hybrid between a third-person shooter and a skating game. Each level you enter the ring and won’t be allowed out until all the enemies are dead. The enemies spawn in bunches, like waves, though they don’t move from their spots in the arena as you skate and swerve around them. You have an arsenal of guns at your disposal, with more unlocking the longer you play. Your ammo is regenerated by doing tricks. Anything from backflips, grinding on rails, or nailing the half-pipe is all present in the game.

This may sound easy enough, but it definitely gets harder when you’re evading not only bullets but also rockets shot at you from a helicopter, flamethrowers trying to scorch you, and snipers aiming for your head. The game has an impressive amount of enemies plus hazards in the arena to keep things fresh. To help you, you’re able to dodge with the simple press of a button and also slow down time for small intervals. This is especially handy if you want to shoot at somebody while doing a cool jump. The game also has auto-aiming. Still, Rollerdrome is a challenge, and that’s not even counting the actual challenges in the game.

Each level is graded on how well you do. Things taken into account are how much health you lost, how fast you were, and how many different tricks you did while completing the level. Each level also has its own set of unique challenges you can complete for bonus points and these also unlock new levels further on. This significantly ups the replayability of the game, since it’s tempting to keep going back to get a higher score on a level you’ve already finished.

If there’s one thing to complain about when it comes to the PC version of Rollerdrome, it’s the actual controls. The game does warn you upon starting that a controller is recommended, but unlike with other games, you can not take this warning lightly. With how many buttons you need to press to pull off some of the tricks while also being able to properly control your character, the keyboard controls feel very clumsy and imprecise, often resulting in you accidentally skating off the map.


Rollerdrome is a unique concept from start to finish, and it helps that the developers are right on the money with how they executed it. There’s no game on the market quite like it, which seems to become less and less common these days. While it takes a bit to master the controls, once you do, it’s exciting how many cool stunts you can pull off in this game. Skate on!

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 9.5/10 (2 votes cast)
VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
Rollerdrome - Review, 9.5 out of 10 based on 2 ratings

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