Spark Plug Games is a small indie studio who took their game MechRunner to Kickstarter in the summer of 2014 and successfully reached their $25,000 base goal – they even overfunded a bit. The team released the game on PC two years after the Kickstarter ended, and almost a year later MechRunner has finally landed on PlayStation 4. Read our MechRunner review to learn more about this fast-paced arcade-style release!
MechRunner is an endless runner type of game where you take control of a large mech that can transform into a tank – hence the name of the game. You will be tasked with defeating endless armies of robots as you save civilians in need.
Why is this happening? The story is about an explosion that took place on 30th June 1908 in Siberia, Russia that wiped out wildlife and vegetation within 800 square miles. The explosion has never been explained, but in the 1940s a Russian science team discovered the wreckage of an alien spacecraft that had technology that was so advanced, it could be very dangerous in the wrong hands. Fast forward a couple of decades or so, and Russia has become the most powerful country in the world in terms of technology and firepower.
MechRunner is a very fast and furious runner game where you are constantly on the move with no ability to stop or slow down. As you move all over the area, you have to shoot and kill O.S.O. soldiers while piloting a giant mech which can also transform into a tank. Once unlocked you can cause absolute mayhem with the many weapons you can purchase with the in-game currency – you get heat seeking missiles, laser cannons, bombs and so more!
As is the case for most runner-style game, a session can last between a few seconds to a few minutes, and as you progress and purchase better stuff, your game has the potential to last a lot longer depending on your skill and loadout.
You can swap between mech mode and tank mode on the fly, and both have their strengths and weaknesses. Each also has primary and secondary weapons which are fully upgradeable. The mech will start out with basic swords and gatling guns, while the tank has missiles and cannons. To get the most out of the game, you will need to sink some serious time into it to improve your character – yes it’s a very grindy runner!
One of the most important aspects of the game to take note of is that the roads are full of debris and obstacles. You’ll need to be very careful, or else your mech will be destroyed before you even know what happened!
During certain points in the game, things will slow down a bit slightly so that you can help a nearby civilian. There are several trophies for rescuing people: one of the trophies is rescuing 500 people, so you can expect to play the game for a while to get this one! Unfortunately, there is no Platinum trophy, but that’s not a deal-breaker for this arcade-style release.
If you make it far enough, there are some epic boss battles to sink your teeth into. Each boss battle is very challenging, so you will need some decent upgrades behind you to be able to stand a chance.
MechRunner is a fun mech runner with polished graphics and a good attention to detail. If you’re looking for an arcade-style release on PlayStation 4 in the runner genre with lots of action and mechs and explosions then you should definitely check this one out. There’s a solid challenge in this one, even if it does get a bit grindy here and there. The team is currently working on a PS Vita port of the game, and we’ll report back with you as soon as it is available!
This MechRunner review is based on a PS4 copy provided by Spark Plug Games.