Should You Play Flashout 3? Or Not?

Please note I was provided with a free game key for my review. However, my thoughts below are my own.

Flashout 3 is a spaceship racing game released on multiple platforms. Including the Sony PlayStation 4/5, Xbox One, Xbox Series S/X and Nintendo Switch. It is developed and published by
Jujubee S.A. I played the Steam version and is the version I shall base my review on. If you love Wipeout, you are going to love this game.

Gameplay

There are three different game modes available once you boot the game up. They are:

  • Campaign
  • Split-Screen
  • Single Race

At the start of the game, you are given an easy-to-understand tutorial. However, be warned the racing section can get frustrating.

Flashout 3 review - start of race

In a similar vein as Mario Karts, you have access to weaponry. These can be used to disrupt your opponent’s race. Even so, unlike Mario Karts, you can assign weapons to the spaceship of your choosing. In the beginning, you have access to weak spaceships, which can support three weak weapons. However, as you progress through the game you get access to better spaceships and more gadgets.

Each spaceship has its own energy pool, which limits the gadgets you can use. The spaceships you unlock come with greater energy pools, which means stronger gadgetry. When playing the campaign you have a chance to choose between two characters, a male and a female. The only difference is they each come with their own special gadget.

Now onto the racing, there are multiple different race types:

  • Normal Race
  • Eliminator
  • Timed Race
  • Destruction Mode

Apart from timed races, you are thrown into a neon-infused track with opponents, battling to take the chequered flag. While in Timed Race you have three laps to set the fastest lap. The races ramp up in speed the further you get in the campaign. The first three tournaments are prolonged. But once you have started the Gamma spec races, the tracks become twisty and faster.

It takes great skill not to hit the walls at every turn. Then there are the opponents. Who are fast and very effective at shooting you down. Even on average AI difficulty, I found it challenging to get first place. But once I did it was a cause for celebration as I felt like I really deserved it.

The difficulty of the races spiked after the first three tournaments. Even with the AI turned down still makes it tough to play. My other gripe is that I do not feel like going back to play it. There is no depth to the game, but it would be great to play with friends using the split-screen mode.

Presentation

The game has strong Tron vibes to it, with the tracks and vehicles outlined in neon colours. The vehicles look like a mess of these neon colours. When selecting weapons you can see them on your vehicle, which is a nice touch. Though it would have been nicer if the neon was removed.

Flashout 3 review - beautiful scenery
Should you play flashout 3? Or not? 5

The environments that each track is set in are gorgeous, both in their setting and also the quality of the graphics. It is a missed opportunity that you cannot leave the track and explore wondrous places. If you remember rainbow road from Mario Kart. Then there is a level just like that here, but slightly easier and with fewer rainbows and stars.

The only downside to the graphics is the character models. They appear very blocky and not exciting. Luckily you only see them during the winning cutscene at the end of each tournament.

Performance

Flashout 3 runs perfectly well on my average gaming PC rig. I have an Nvidia GTX 1080 and there were no frame drops or graphic artefacts. The game kept a stable frame rate even when there were multiple opponents on the screen firing all their weapons. I would expect it to run somewhat well on a laptop, and should not have a problem on other consoles.

Flashout 3 review - rainbow road

The only issue I did find was there was a slight delay during respawns if I was thrown out of bounds. But this rarely happened and may have been a design choice. But it did not affect my enjoyment of the game.

Flashout 3 Verdict

Flashout 3 is a fun experience, however, with two negatives against it. The main issue is I do not feel like I need to play anymore. If I have only 20 minutes to play a game, then I may jump on. Otherwise, I will play something else. It is very polished and shiny. But could benefit from a deeper levelling up system or allowing the player to explore the wonderful worlds the developer has created. For these reasons, Flashout 3 received a solid 3 out of 5.

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