Review by Ofisil

"Swooosh! (Translation:Great Game!)"

River Raid is a Shooter developed by Activision. The videogame industry of that era was literally flooded with shooters, especially space themed ones. Most of them were either boring clones of classic titles, (too many to mention), or 100% rip-offs. River Raid doesn't belong in these categories. It's a very good, original, (for its time), and entertaining game worthy of your time.

Gameplay: 7.4/10
Replay Value: 6.8/10

In River Raid you control a small plane that flies in a straight line, (a river), and shoots various stuff like boats, helicopters & jets. You have a Fuel gauge that you must keep an eye on because once it gets empty you die, so you must be on the lookout for fuel items, (that you can accidentally shoot). While the concept is simple it manages to be quite fun. The controls are very good and aren't just left, right, shoot. You can actually increase the throttle of your plane, (spectacularly done for a game of its time), and the level design while repetitive is randomly generated and will give you lots of small challenges to handle. River Raid is a well-made title that only suffers in the replay department and that because you can play for 10 hours and the game will still be the same without any differences in difficulty, enemies or level design.

Graphics & Sound: 8.2/10

Very, very good… for Atari 2600 standards that is, since everything looks like it supposed to. You'll fight along a never-ending river, blasting away ships, helicopters, jets aaaaaand nothing more to say the truth. The game suffers from visual variety but then again which game of this console doesn't, huh? There is no music, (again nothing new for 2600), but the sound effects are very good, especially the engine sound which changes depending on the velocity. Generally one of the best looking\sounding games of Atari 2600.

[+]:
-One of the best Shooters on Atari 2600
-Good graphics, very good sound

[-]:
-Low Replay Value

Also Play:
1942 (Arcade, NES & Other Platforms)
Defender (Atari 2600)
Moon Patrol (Arcade)
R-Type 3 (SNES)
River Raid 2 (Atari 2600)

Overall: 7.5/10

While not the best game out there it's a great example of how important Gameplay is. Nowadays that technology has reach extreme heights most games are just graphics… back then it was all about how fun a game was and River Raid will give you tons of fun. Without a doubt a game that every Atari 2600 game collector should have.


Reviewer's Score: 7/10 | Originally Posted: 10/20/11

Game Release: River Raid (US, 12/31/82)


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