Review: Redneck Rampage Rides Again

After the release of Suckin’ Grits on Route 66, in 1998 Redneck Rampage received a sequel Redneck Rampage Rides Again. In 1998 when FPS games were making huge technical advancements, Redneck Rampage Rides Again was one of the last games on an “old engine”.

Developed by Xatrix Entertainment and published by Interplay, Redneck Rampage Rides Again, or simply Rides Again, it was released in 1998, probably the last year to release a 2.5 FPS game. Rides Again is developed using the Build Engine, and despite being a sequel there are very little new things compared to the original.

The game pickups after the ending of the first game (more precisely Suckin’ Grits on Route 66), Leonard and Bubba crash land the alien spaceship when returning to Earth. The aliens show up once again, and it’s up to Leonard and Bubba to return to their hometown of Hickston and save it from an alien invasion.
The story is divided into two episodes and overall the story is the same as it was in the original game.

However, there are several new things added to this sequel. There are two new enemies, Daisy Mae (a cheerleader, who does cartwheels and uses her baton as a weapon) and Frank Doyle (a biker, who uses tow sawed-off shotguns and can drive a bike around). There is also a Jack O’Lope, an over-sized rodent, who uses melee attacks. All of the other enemies are from the original game, with a few palette swaps here and there.
Most of the weapons also make the return, but now you can also use chicken crossbow ammo, which serves as a sort of homing missile. You can also equip, the swing blade, but this is only a bit more powerful than a crowbar.

The largest addition to the sequel is the introduction of vehicles, the motorcycle, and an airboat. The vehicles are used at specific levels, and fortunately, they are easy enough to control. The motorcycle is a bit easier to control and is armed with two machine guns, while the airboat is a bit trickier to control, but is armed with a mortar. The levels with vehicles are basically giant hallways with several stops along the way, but they can get a bit confusing as the keys can be difficult to locate at times.
Enemies also drive motorcycles and airboats and will try to either shoot you or ram into you. The downside is that if you crash your motorcycle or airboat, you can lose some health, depending on the impact. At any time you have the option to leave your vehicle and proceed on foot.

The levels in both episodes are better than those in the original game, and it looks like Xatrix Entertainment learned from their mistakes. Some of the levels can be a bit confusing, but it’s nowhere near the level of the original game. There are still secrets and Easter Eggs, and the levels are laid out more logically, the only negative being that

The levels in both episodes are better than those in the original game, and it looks like Xatrix Entertainment learned from their mistakes. Some of the levels can be a bit confusing, but it’s nowhere near the level of the original game. There are still secrets and Easter Eggs, and the levels are laid out more logically, the only negative being that it’s really easy to miss keys in the vehicle levels.
The levels are also similar to the original game, unique in both atmosphere and style. In the first episode, you will visit Area 69, break out of jail in El Peso, visit the Jack O’Lope farm, while in the second episode you will visit such places as the swamp, a gambling boat, Disgraceland (a parody of Graceland), Motocross race track, and many more.
Sadly, there aren’t any secret levels, a feature that could have hugely benefited the game.

The huge flaw of this sequel is that not much has changed, and there isn’t that much new stuff to spice things up. It’s not the problem that the game uses Build Engine, the problem is that the developers didn’t improve the problems from the original game. The weapon damage is all over the place, enemies can inflict various levels of damage regardless of the range (especially the biker enemy), and there aren’t any new items or power-ups for you to use. Also, several new enemies and a couple of palette swaps aren’t enough for the sequel. There was room for new enemies and items, but Rides Again feels more like an expansion pack than a full-fledged sequel.
Oddly, it’s similar to DOOM 2. There are a couple of new enemies, some new weapons, but ultimately it feels like an expansion pack than a sequel.

The graphics are still the same as in the original game, and the new enemies fit perfectly into the redneck aesthetic. The music is also amazing and on point, and Mojo Nixon makes a return and even makes a cameo appearance. Also, there is more banjo music this time around, and they are a nice addition to the game’s soundtrack.
The humor and jokes in the game are excellent and continue the trend of the style of humor from the original game. The spirit and the humor add to the redneck aesthetic of the game, and you’re guaranteed to have a couple of laughs.

In conclusion, Redneck Rampage Rides Again is good, even though the game doesn’t add that many new things to the mix. I would recommend that you play this right after completing the Redneck Rampage and Suckin’ Grits on Route 66, and Rides Again will feel like a really good addition to the series. Good FPS games are hard to find and funny, humorous games are even harder to find.
Redneck Rampage Rides Again is good, funny, the level design has been improved compared to the original game. It’s easily available on both Steam and GOG (on GOG it comes as a part of a bundle with the original game), and I would recommend that you use one of the source ports, either Build GDX or Redneck GDX. They will allow you to play it on modern systems and in a higher resolution and you can also tweak your game if needed.
If you like unique games or old-school FPS games, give the game a try. It’s certainly unique and easily available.

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