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Review

Rad Rodgers: Radical Edition (Switch eShop) Review

by February 26, 2019

If there’s anything to take away from the last ten years of indie platformers, it’s that they sure love the ‘80s and ‘90s. The very same, Rad Rodgers is a side-scrolling shooter-platformer which spends more time cracking 30 year old quips and swear words than striving to do much that’s actually new.

The game starts out with Rad falling asleep after playing video games and waking up to find himself in a world where said console, now named Dusty, rides along as a backpack while cussing and making dirty jokes to a pre-teen. Rad’s equipped with a machine gun that can be aimed with the right stick and fired with Y/ZR, while Dusty can deal melee attacks with the A button. Apart from that, there are opportunities to collect temporary power-ups which change up the projectiles you fire, as well as jumping.

The game is simple enough in design: your standard shooter-platformer with non-complex level design filled with cannon-fodder enemies. Each stage requires collecting four quadrants of a medallion to complete, with the opportunity for finding collectibles and secrets. The stages are held together via an overworld map, with the option of dropping in a second player for couch co-op. In Switch’s Rad Rodgers – Radical Edition, players can also unlock iconic characters play as such as Duke Nukem and… Lo Wang from Shadow Warrior.

Rad Rodgers is a very surface-level experience; all the (im)mature content kids thought was funny back in the day, with run and gun action. But the game isn’t without its drastic caveats.

There isn’t really a nice way around it: the game does not look good. Rad Rodgers is plagued with consistent anti-aliasing problems, and the constantly depth-of-field blurring is a literal eye-sore. That last point I had the biggest problems with when it came to the graphics. While playing in TV mode, looking at the blurry background to take in the overall level-design put so much strain on my eyes that I had to actively avoid it and focus extra hard only looking at the foreground.

The situation was made worse when Rad would switch over to controlling Dusty in these sort-of mini puzzles called the Pixelverse, where the combination of bad aliasing and blurry visuals would cause so much eye-strain I dreaded every moment. This all said, I found the problem had less of an effect when played in handheld mode, thanks to the smaller screen. But it’s clear the Switch is not the ideal platform to play this game.

To further add to my frustrations, I would often become lost in some stages, not being able to find the necessary medallion piece to finish the stage. This could have been rectified if there was some sort of hints system, but I suppose that wouldn’t be the right fit in a game that’s all about celebrating the past.

If potty-mouth platforming is your jam, then you’ll probably have an enjoyable time with Rad Rodgers – if you can overlook the untuned graphics. But for me, the games spends too much time trying to party like Poochie instead of delivering a coherent experience.

Rating: 2.5/5

The Good

- Light-hearted humour
- If you’re into shooting and jumping, this is all about that

The Bad

- Unoptimised graphics
- The dirty humour is shallow and lacks real charm
- Stage design is sometimes unclear

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Final Thoughts

If potty-mouth platforming is your jam, then you’ll probably have an enjoyable time with Rad Rodgers - if you can overlook the untuned graphics. But for me, the games spends too much time trying to party like Poochie instead of delivering a coherent experience.

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About The Author
Angelo Valdivia
  • Silly G
    February 26, 2019 at 2:24 pm

    That’s unfortunate. My physical copy from overseas is on its way, so I’ll reserve judgement.

    I’m a lifelong Apogee Software/3D Realms fan, so this is an absolute must buy regardless. Ion Maiden couldn’t come soon enough, and I hope Duke Nukem Megaton Collection as well as Apogee’s back catalogue is released on Switch as well.

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