RIVE: Wreck! Hack! Die! Retry!In RIVE: Wreck! Hack! Die! Retry! it all starts with me taking a trip through an asteroid belt, looking for a derelict hulk or two to loot. Naturally, I found the biggest baddest, and most broken ship possible, drifting through space. A craft with a very welcoming and functional AI.

RIVE: Wreck! Hack! Die! Retry!
I like robotic spiders a lot

RIVE is a twin-stick shooter, which means that I control the craft with one stick. Then use the other to shoot in the direction I point it in. The game itself uses quite good-looking and well-animated 2d sprites to populate the ship and give it life. Everything has life to it, despite being mechanical monstrosities. Naturally, RIVE contains exactly what it says on the tin: Wreck! Hack! Die! Retry.

RIVE: Wreck! Hack! Die! Retry!

Within the wreck, vicious enemies will attack you from every side in vicious waves. Throughout the game story, various hacks are unlocked, and these are used to take over certain foes. Such a nifty healing bot or a machine gun turret, plus several more. Unfortunately, I die a lot and you will do the same. Which means I have to retry. Luckily checkpoints are plentiful.

In RIVE I use a spider robot, which can transform into a nimble flying spacecraft as well. The gameplay switches between being stuck in a small area, where waves spawn from different sides. To the classical run for your life and some exploration. Which leads to many seemingly unfair situations. Yet they are very much possible to overcome. Despite the game’s default being hard mode, followed by speed-running and one credit mode. You know, the kind of mode where you die and it’s game over. RIVE: Wreck! Hack! Die! Retry!That is why RIVE has a health bar and several upgrades that can be bought from bolts throughout the story. For those who are completionists, there is also a leaderboard and Steam achievements as well.

RIVE: Wreck! Hack! Die! Retry!

The music in RIVE: Wreck! Hack! Die! Retry! is quite fantastic and catchy, but it does turn itself down when there is a slow section. Despite the overwhelming onslaught of enemies, there are several breaks in the action. This is a very good thing indeed, it also gives RIVE time to add some story and life to the very few characters in-game. The protagonist is a very chill and unshaven engineer. With a fairly good voice actor, that has great interactions with the very questionable and quirky AI within the ship. There is a decent story within the game but I’ve probably told too much about it already.

Unfortunately one of the most common enemy types I encounter is the kind that smashes my face in and goes boom. I’ve never been many fans of suicide enemies. Other than that fighting in a small space and being swamped by the enemy is a bit annoying at times.

Even though I enjoy the game greatly, most people will probably find it a bit too hard and very frustrating. Yes, the game flows smoothly and is easy to control. But there is a lot going on on the screen.

rive

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Njål Sand is a Norwegian Cosplayer with opinions on video games, and a passionate for creating content on YouTube about living in Norway, and gaming!
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