notified of site updates. Sign-up for the Newsletter sent out
E-Mail Address Below:
Score: 8.0 / 10
The very second the new Xbox title Quantum
Redshift begins, you will instantly be reminded of the futuristic racer
Wipeout series that appeared most prominently on the PlayStation
consoles. There’s a mighty good reason too. Many of the team members on
Quantum Redshift’s development staff helped create games in the Wipeout
series. With that developmental lineage, you would think that their
newest project would be just as good as what has appeared in the Wipeout
series. But while it certainly is an overall solid finished project,
Quantum Redshift just doesn’t quite seem to reach the “A” list title
echelon it may have attained if some aspects of the game had been more
Right off, the single most impressive feature of Quantum Redshift is its
absolutely gorgeous graphics. This is one of the Xbox’s best looking
games to date, and that’s saying a lot. The weather effects really stand
out, especially water from either rain or that has been splashed or
sprayed on your SPARC’s (Single Person Armed
Racing Craft) windshield are
ultra-realistic. It sets the standard from here on out for games that
need to incorporate water effects.
Quantum Redshift’s levels, SPARCs, and character models are also
beautifully crafted, with vibrancy galore gracing your television set.
The character models are almost on par with the heavenly creatures
appearing in Dead of Alive 3. Also
really top-notched are the particle effects from the SPARC’s weapons
fire and engines.
When it comes to the game’s controls, Quantum Redshift gives the gamer a
nice and responsive scheme to roar through races. Although each SPARC
controls differently because of their individual construction, they are
all relatively easy to control. Not only does your craft have driving
controls, but also weaponry, a shield and turbo at your disposal. These
are all mapped out effectively on your Xbox controller, making Quantum
Redshift easy to learn to play.
There are various power-ups throughout the tracks that upgrade your
weapons, shield and give you points that build your score, which gives
you more money to upgrade your SPARC. You must finish in first place in
each race to advance, but there isn’t much challenge in accomplishing
that feat once you get a few races under your belt.
The game’s challenge increases as you advance into harder settings, but
Quantum Redshift is better suited for multiplayer gaming, where up to
four players can race each other throughout the game’s tracks. There are
16 tracks and 16 individual racers who race one of 16 unique SPARCs.
Each SPARC has different weapons, but most are either rocket or laser
types. As you progress through the game, more characters and tracks
become available to race in either quick race or multiplayer mode.
But Quantum Redshift does have its blemishes. The game is set 100 years
in the future, where you battle it out against other racers and their
SPARCs through courses all over the earth in the quest for the world
championship. Unfortunately, the story mode of the game is severely
underdeveloped, almost as if it was an afterthought to include it in the
All of the cut-scenes have two racers facing each other in the middle of
a racetrack throwing comments and barbs at each other. After the first
racer you select works their way through each of the levels (novice,
amateur, expert, master, and Redshift), for any other racer you select
you will skip through the worthless cut-scenes. Thankfully, the
single-player story-less mode is overshadowed by Quantum Redshift’s
excellent multiplayer mode and pushing challenge on the upper difficulty
levels of the game.
Another suffering facet of Quantum Redshift is its terribly insufficient
Snoozeville soundtrack. Where the Wipeout series is known for the great
music that elevated the gameplay to a new level, Quantum Redshift has a
so-five-years-ago techno-beat sound provided by Junkie XL, supposedly a
big European techno group. The music rarely ever matches the frantic
action happening on the course, which is a big disappointment. But
Quantum Redshift fortunately allows you to take advantage of the Xbox’s
soundtrack feature, so you can rip a much better soundtrack to use while
playing than what’s given to you.
It never really feels like you're going exceptionally fast as you race
from track to track (you're capable of up to 900 mph speeds), but there
are vertigo moments where the combination of speed and flying up or down
large distances does give the gamer a sensation of velocity. On the plus
side, the frame-rate seems to be flying at a smooth 60 fps as there
isn’t any noticeable stuttering, clipping or pop-up of visual elements.
Considering the game has a good frame-rate, its load times are a little
longer than would be expected. But the loading screen has a hint system
to peruse, so as you brush up on ways to race a better Quantum Redshift
race, the load time doesn’t drag by quite as much.
While Quantum Redshift plays it safe by copying the basics laid out by
the Wipeout series, the coma-inducing soundtrack and ill-advised (or at
least weakly developed) story mode hold it back from being a great game.
Still, it has enough redeeming qualities, particularly if you will be
getting a lot of mileage out of the multiplayer fun packed into the
game, that I would recommend the title to Xbox gamers who want a racer
that resembles Wipeout’s gameplay style. But if you are looking at
Quantum Redshift solely as a single-player excursion, you may want to
rent it first before deciding to buy.