Rocket League Sideswipe Review — Pocket Rocket

Rocket League is a perfect combination of calculated action and unexpected chaos. The idea of playing soccer with cars is itself a good one, but it’s the way that Rocket League feels that makes it so much fun to play. Ludicrous speed, perfectly controlled cars, and goofy, floaty physics interactions turn every play into a melding of intelligent execution and unpredictable luck. Any version of Rocket League on a mobile device would have to capture that same feeling, and it’s remarkable how much Rocket League Sideswipe–a scaled-down, super-quick mobile take on the Rocket League concept–captures exactly what makes its full-sized counterpart so enjoyable.

Sideswipe succeeds in creating a conception of Rocket League that caters to mobile play. This is a platform where time is spent in short bursts and where the best games are those that find a sweet spot between solid control and decreased complexity. For developer Psyonix, that sweet spot is found by taking the fundamentals of Rocket League and flattening them into a 2D version of the 3D game. This is still soccer with cars (or basketball with cars, depending on the playlist you choose), but instead of covering a whole 3D soccer field, you instead only have to deal with all the action on a single plane.

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The side-on view of the field means that a few elements of Rocket League work differently in the mobile version. You can’t crash into other cars, for instance–only the ball, the floors, and the wall affect your vehicle in motion. And since goals can’t be horizontal, they instead extend vertically into the air with a lip at top and bottom, requiring you to give your shots a little lift in order to score.

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