The rocket launcher is likely one of the most recognizable weapons in multiplayer shooters. From Quake to Team Fortress, its operate as a weapon morphed into an alternate technique of traversal, with the danger of a self-inflicted loss of life and the reward of superior map positioning engaging gamers to develop into proficient at rocket leaping. In Rocket Arena, each the rocket launcher and rocket leaping are core to the motion. But with out suitably satisfying capturing and the mitigation of all of the rewards related to its core mechanic, Rocket Arena lacks a compelling and lasting attraction.
Rocket Arena contains a roster of 10 playable characters, every geared up with their very own model of a rocket launcher and a few auxiliary skills. The variations go from fundamental, similar to Jayto’s straight-capturing launcher and multi-missile secondary assault, to difficult, like Kayi’s means to hurry up pleasant rockets and decelerate enemy ones. Whether you choose the lobbed rockets of area pirate Blastbeard or the trickster skills of mage Mysteen, Rocket Arena’s characters all function sufficient mechanical selection to make them stand out from one another regardless of all that includes the identical sort of principal weapon. Their cartoonish designs and bursting costume colours look nice, however their uninteresting backstories and few voice-traces restrict the extent of their personalities.
These weapon and skill variations feed into the 3v3 group play in every of Rocket Arena’s aggressive modes. A group can not function duplicates of a personality, so that you’re inspired to work across the picks of your teammates. Although the very temporary and fundamental tutorial does not train you about it, assaults may be mixed between characters to kind extra highly effective combos. Ability results may be transferred onto rockets fired by teammates, for instance, however trying to coordinate each the timing and positioning for such a transfer is commonly not definitely worth the payoff.
Instead, Rocket Arena feels greatest whenever you’re enjoying it as a daily, run-of-the-mill group-based mostly shooter. The freedom of motion afforded by every character’s triple soar enables you to keep within the air and nimbly maneuver round greater than having your ft on the bottom, letting you dodge incoming projectiles and hearth off assaults from any course. The frenetic nature of the motion combines properly with the absence of conventional well being bars; Rocket Arena adopts a system like that of Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, the place every participant has a bar that builds up when hit. The fuller the meter, the tougher every hit will really feel, with a properly-positioned shot on a participant with a full bar knocking them out of the sector for a short while.
Your rockets, together with these of your teammates, will not harm you, letting you experiment with the timing for rocket jumps with out ending up as a large number on the ground. Chaining collectively pictures towards an adjoining wall additionally helps you hop vertically up it, which may imply the distinction between respawning or not if you end up off the map. But whereas Rocket Arena makes the ability shot nearly trivially simple to tug off, it additionally does not provide you with many causes to make use of it. Where different shooters reward the danger of a rocket soar with the benefit of map place, Rocket Arena’s map layouts and liberal vertical character motion render it nearly meaningless in second-to-second play. Rocket jumps are nonetheless satisfying to tug off, however with none benefit to them there is not any purpose to carry out them.
Matches are subsequently principally simple and one-word, not encouraging the usage of advanced methods to win. The totally different sport modes break up the monotonous motion to an extent, with Rocket Arena gathering all of them underneath its single Arena playlist. Here you play by way of a handful of frequent multiplayer match varieties, together with deathmatch, level management, and a rocket-ball spin on seize the flag. None stand out as significantly thrilling and do not capitalize on the rocket-based mostly capturing in any enjoyable or novel methods. Outside of Arena, Rocket Arena affords a straight deathmatch playlist, Ranked Arena play, and a forgettable cooperative wave survival mode.
Rocket Arena mixes conventional character development and a few of the trappings from free-to-play shooters, together with beauty gadgets up for buy through microtransactions and a season cross with further in-sport unlocks. New characters are promised for every new season of aggressive play, all of which shall be free to all gamers too. It additionally options normal character development, with further cosmetics similar to different skins, banners, and extra locked behind every character’s particular person stage. Items that affect gameplay can’t be bought, and solely a handful of skins require both actual-world cash or a big portion of the in-sport forex you earn whereas enjoying. Passive character perks are unlocked no matter particular person character ranges, and may be shared between characters too. They do not make a big sufficient affect on gameplay to make new gamers really feel at a drawback, however they’re good rewards for sticking to the character you wish to play as most.
Rocket Arena’s method to being a extra approachable shooter, from its colourful, whimsical characters to its forgiving rocket launcher mechanics, makes it simple to understand at first look. Its frenetic mixture of explosive-based mostly capturing and simple-to-perceive character skills allow you to begin having enjoyable quick, however its lack of depth and uninteresting modes do not keep the momentum. Rocket Arena undermines its principal rocket-leaping hook by making the technique meaningless amongst its different mechanics, and its capturing grows stale within the course of. There’s restricted enjoyable available with its frenetic and quick capturing motion, nevertheless it’s missing robust lasting attraction.