Steam: Street Arena
This is a love letter to GTAII, and any game that involves little thought and many, many explosions. What isn't there to love about explosions, gratuitous violence, and car chases. In all those aspects this game accomplishes those things, unfortunately there are a couple of fundamental flaws that hold this game back from being a great game. Simply put, no one is playing it. Street Arena is solely based off the idea of multiplayer, involving game modes like free-for-all and capture the flag, but here is no single player campaign. There are some cop bots but that's about it.
I am getting ahead myself though. When you first load up the game you are greeted by an unappealing start up screen. This screen is where you either host or connect to other games. This entire system feels rather clunky and very unpolished, but it gets the job done. There are quite a few options available from graphical, to rebindable keys, however, messing with things like resolution did cause the game to crash for me. From this screen you finally load into the actual game. It loads up all its assets and textures and loads you into another lobby. From here you finally hit join game and get to play.
Here is where the game shines, you spawn in and proceed to rain chaos on everything around you. Weapons are littered about the level, ranging from pistols to rocket launchers. To collect these all you simply have to do is walk or drive through them. You can steal any car with a click of a button and then proceed to do drive-bys and any other chaotic thought that pops into your mind. The controls are fairly simplistic and an explanation shoots across your screen every time you respawn. Just about anybody can just drop in and start having fun with Street Arena. With a group of friends this game would excel, all the tools are there for you to have fun, but sadly, no one is playing. If people were playing there are multiple game modes to enjoy, such as 1v1 or Hunt, where you track down one particular player for points. Unfortunately, I spent my time just driving around and killing cops and goofing off. This quickly became dull and I lost interest.
Graphically the game is simple, but ideal. You can tell that things like people in the street have little to to no detail but cars and buildings are detailed enough. Explosions have a nice feel to them and bullets zing and cars screech in expected fashion. The graphics/interface, just like the start up menu get the job done, even if they aren't the prettiest thing in the world. The level design is fairly simplistic and lends itself to the varied game modes. One thing that is slightly off putting was the games use of foul language for absolutely no reason. Screaming f****d at you when you die, which isn't funny or shocking, but annoying. Needless to say, this isn't a kid friendly game.
As this is solely multiplayer game, things like story, replay value, and game length are completely dependent on the player. You could enjoy Street Arena for an hour or up to 80 hours. It really depends on how much you enjoy blowing things up. One thing the game does boast is a map editor. While this isn't visibly present anywhere on the start up menu, I digged into the Steam folder, and found it. This seemed slightly silly, but you can create your own maps for you to enjoy and share with your friends.
One thing the game does have is a wide music track. Well, when you get in a car anyways. Multiple radio stations are there for you flip through ranging from rock, country, to pop. I couldn't exactly comment to the number of tracks but it's nice to have those options present as you drive around the map killing everything in sight. I haven't heard of any of songs in the game but then again I am not a music savant.
While the game does have a few technical hang ups, everything works fairly well when it does finally load. The only problem I feel is that this game doesn't really offer enough to keep a player hooked, since it has no single player campaign and the gameplay is completely based off its multiplayer. It ends up feeling hollow and the fun grows thin. Other Indie games like Retro City Rampage offer this type of gameplay and have a single player campaign. It's not super innovative either when it's triple A counterpart offers this and more in oodles. Street Arena however is a fraction of the price compared to it's triple A inspiration, at $6.99. This does make it fairly easy to get your hands on and enjoy. To wrap up, this is solely a game you can enjoy with friends. So if you plan on getting Street Arena, make sure to have a friend buy it too.