The eShop’s virtual shelves are getting ever more crowded with each passing week. Can the extremely inexpensive game REKT! possibly be anything other than another putrid attempt to break into the Switch Shovelware Hall of Shame? Get ready for a shocker: good things sometimes do come in cheap packages.
There is no plot here, and one is never needed. There is only one single-player Score Attack game mode that gives you a single Micro Machines-style vehicle and throws you into a TRON-like, neon-style arena, not unlike setting seen in Rocket League. It’s more akin to a glorified skate park, actually, with ‘skate’ truly being the keyword; not only will you find a lot of similarities with a certain Pro Skater video game series, but one of the fifty-plus unlockable vehicles is a literal skateboard.
The arenas themselves provide all sorts of stunt-friendly bits like loops, stacked boxes to plough trough, impromptu half pipes, bowls, grindable rails and every conceivable shape of ramp. Once airborne, a quick flip on the right analogue stick lets you perform spins, flips or any combination of both. The only thing you need to keep in mind is that you’ll need to land on four wheels – or at the very least, two – to land the sequence and avoid getting ‘Rekt’ and losing the accumulated score for that stunt attempt (it’s worth noting that the game also acknowledges the time spent on two wheels as a stunt-worthy endeavour). This is all fairly standard stuff one would pull of on a skateboard, but not that common behind the wheel of a car.
You only have one arena at the beginning, but a few others can be purchased with in-game currency that will expand your stunt playground. They are all tightly-designed and have several upper areas to explore that will challenge the most dedicated players after exhausting the ramps, loops, and grinds on the ground floors.
This is what caught us by surprise; one would assume a game like this would be lacking in single-player content, but we found ourselves eagerly coming back for another go, attempting to chain the perfect set of stuns in order to blow up the online leaderboards. A single run will cost you only a couple of minutes and it is quite possible to mess up and end the session with zero points. The trick here is to use your drift skills to keep chaining stunts along with multipliers to get your points total into the millions. If you can grab an extra friend (or three), the local split-screen mode introduces a few more game styles to the default Score Attack and really adds value to the already solid single-player offering.
Each run also assigns you three missions to complete, rewarding the player with in-game currency that you can spend on the aforementioned extra arenas, or trying your luck in the ‘spin and win’ game of chance to get customization parts for your ever-growing collection of slick racers, nostalgia-inducing ’80s car spoofs (‘The B-Team’ van, anyone?) or simply insane vehicles (If your dream is to do a triple loop in a snow-plougher, you’ll get your chance in Rekt). Vehicles are not simply in the game for show; each has unique handling, speed, weight and appropriate physics, and trying out a new ride to see how it performs is a real joy.
Rekt’s visual style opts for bright neon colours with untextured polygons, ensuring a smooth 60 frames per second performance across both portable and docked modes – at the slight expense of visual detail. It’s not an ugly game by any means, but it does look a little empty at times.
“Get Rekt!” is not something one would expect to write or read in a professional video game review, but there is truly no other conclusion we could end with. For the tiny asking price you get a complete and charming single experience that will keep rewarding your efforts with extra content that, in turn, helps to expand the multiplayer portion of the game. Tight controls and enjoyable in-game physics seal the deal, and while a more traditional racing mode would have been nice, what’s on offer more than justifies the low asking price.