A tackle here, an impossible somersault there, a frantic race against the clock and a beautiful goal to end the game. Roller Champions from Ubisoft is the new free game that seeks to break into the difficult world of roller games. extreme sports, and in this review we explore the pros and cons of what’s new from the creators of Rainbow Six Siege and For Honor.
Competitive games live a peak moment. Whether due to the originality and freshness of proposals such as Apex Legends, Rainbow Six Siege, Fortnite or Rocket League -among many others-, or the fact that in the last two years we have used them more Due to the pandemic, there is no doubt that many studios are seeing how the public is increasingly demanding alternatives to a type of video game that is already considered an Olympic sport. It’s no surprise, then, that new contenders pop up from time to time in the increasingly uphill battle for players’ attention; and today’s game is a tough game to beat, since the first news about Roller Champions came in the summer of 2019. Since then, the world has changed a lot, but the principle is the same: make us have a great time competing against other players in a completely free video game.
What is Roller Champions about? We’re talking about a competitive game that’s kind of crossover between Rocket League and the game Mayan Ball. With a proposal like this, we can say that Ubisoft Montreal has complied by offering something different from its competitors, but although the game enters through the eyes and the rules have their subtleties, under it lacks a bit of depth or variety to hook enough people to form a sustainable competitive community. In this review, I look at what I liked…and also what I’d like to see change in the coming weeks.
Very flashy matches but nothing else
After the first games, I realize that there is not much left under the surfaceRoller Champions entered the esports scene on May 25th. With its colorful settingshis energetic soundtrack and its original approachUbisoft Montreal brought us the following: 3v3 skate games in velodromes but with the objective of scoring 5 points in a goal or a hoop clearly inspired by the game Mayan Ball. Before attempting to shoot hoops, our team must keep possession of the ball as he carries her through 4 checkpoints scattered on the track. Once you perform a trick with the ball, the hoop is unlocked to throw it and score a point. However, we can try to do one more trick to score 2 points if we score, or even try to give five rounds to score up to five pointsending the meeting. Obviously, the higher the risk, the better the reward, meaning if the ball is snatched away from us before we score, the counter resets.
[cita01]Initially, the rules invite desire to play, and the graphic and sound style of the game are very good motivation. But after the first matches I realize that there’s not much more under the surface. Right from the start, all the steps are exactly the same; they only change aesthetic aspects like the color pattern, the time we play and the textures of the velodrome. Maybe this point is a little tricky, after all – and to give an example – all football stadiums are the same in their field of play. But that’s only after practicing and training in a skate park with various ramps, holes and curved walls I expected some competition fields to deviate a bit from the basic design of the typical velodrome. A kind of variety similar to what you can see in tennis matches; The fast court is not the same thing as clay or grass, only here it applies to the course that one can do in terms of layout or elevation. Then there is match development.
I admit it is funny trying to keep the ball or snatch it from the opponent by intercepting passes or tackling them, and the feeling of speed that comes from taking advantage of the jumps What are you doing on the wall? cant or grab a partner and boost with them to earn game points. But the lack of variety means that after two or three matches, you feel like you’re playing the same game over and over.
Abuse of tackles subtracts pace from matches actionThen there’s the basic mechanic for intercepting players. The game already warns us in the tutorial that it is a contact sports, which means that there will be ”cakes”. And I wouldn’t mind if there was some kind of penalty, either in the form of rules or reducing your effectiveness in the game, to keep us from being abuse the tackle each two for three. You might think that would slow down the experience, but the game already does that ‘by itself’. When the ball is not in anyone’s possession, it makes sense that continuous scrums and tacklesand this can lead to the ball barely moving from the section it is in, which takes up a lot of game time. But it is that even without going with the ball or not being involved in a game nearby, nothing prevents us from tackling -or being tagged- “just because”.
This, as in contact sports like rugby, should justify a foul. There is also the fact that we can spam the tackles without any type of penalty -beyond getting back up if we make them particularly strong-, and that means that in most games I’ve played I’ve barely seen them score “goals” of more than a point. Most of the time, both teams try to tackle each other without the ball even being involved in the fight, and that too stop that we can reach speeds high enough to mimic what a character does in the CGI intro: enter skate on the wall in the hoop carrying the ball.
In fact, it’s weird the game that ends with a team reaching the highest score, and that there is plenty of time to do so -7 minutes plus sudden death in the event of a tie-, but the tackling mechanics not well implementedslows down the pace of the game and prevents you from enjoying spectacular “races” to score more points or enjoying gliding at full speed through the velodrome.
In terms of game modes and content, you can find out everything what the diploma offers in one or two short sessions. Initially, you need to play 10 quick matches to unlock ranked mode and custom games, which are the same as quick matches. If you don’t feel like playing, you can go to the skatepark to practice moves, but don’t kill yourself too much because the orography here invites you to do things that you will never see in a game, like trying to run and stay on raised areas several meters above the ground or zigzag to gain more speed between several “dunes” to be more elusive and unpredictable. And it goes without saying that the custom ones that you can play with and against friends or with bots, well they are just pachangas.
Micropayments in Roller Champions
We now come to what I think is the point more questionable of the title : cosmetics. Okay, it’s F2P and it needs to be monetized somehow but I feel like it’s abusing micropayments with a loot box system, here called booty balls which sometimes cause you to receive content that you already had in your collection. The surprising thing is that it happened to me when I had barely unlocked anything, which at first is a bad sign. As you level up – gain fans – you unlock the possibility to equip your skater with new outfits, skates, goal effects etc. But it is that the vast majority of these cosmetics obliged to pay to exchange real money for “wheels”, the in-game currency, and then buy what you’ve unlocked.
I have the impression that the game abuses micropayments and loot boxes, called LootballsAt least the technical part it is very stable and it runs fluently, and other than a few occasional disconnections I haven’t had any major issues with the game, and as I mentioned before it’s very nice to watch while playing. The soundtrack is also good and it fits like a glove with tracks from pop artists like Beatrich, The Chainsmokers or Grimes, all very pleasant to listen to. But why do all the avatars look so androgynous and with few customization options at the start? Where are the designs so striking and charismatic What did they show in the trailers or in the CGI you’re shown after your first game is over? What are the “characters” that appear there? I don’t understand why they are given so much hype and saucer for later never show them again.
It’s a shame because, honestly, and despite what I told you in this review, I want this game please me; for its aesthetics, its approach and its ground rules, and because it’s always good to have something more than variety when choosing between your games. Ubisoft has already promised that the title will continue to growbut its release was quite weak and without much incentive for the general public -just look at the problems there are to find any game, and luckily it’s F2P-, although fans of skating and the competitive world will no doubt appreciate it, but in small doses because it gets carried away in no time. I? I don’t see myself playing much with him in the future. Hopefully when he gets older and they maybe work on the mechanics a bit more, he can say otherwise.