Talking cars. Who doesn’t like talking cars? And talking cars that can blow stuff up? Even better. Except in this case, the vehicle in question is a super-smart sentient motorcycle that got hit by lightning and decided it doesn’t want to work for The Man anymore.
That’s the basic plot of LocoCycle, a racing combat game from Twisted Pixel that’s coming out for Xbox One. I got my hands on the game at PAX Prime and wound up laughing more than I expected at the odd couple relationship between mechanic Pablo and IRIS, the hyper-intelligent two-wheeler he’s stuck to.
The demo started mid-chase, with government agents from the secret lab where IRIS was created trying to re-capture the motorcycle after her escape. IRIS comes equipped with machine guns that can take out enemy vehicles ahead of her. She’ll also have melee combat moves that can deal with cyclists that pul up close to her. These animations got a chuckle out of me, since I wasn’t expecting a motorcycle to be pulling off martial arts combos. Even though he chained to the rear of IRIS’ chassis, Pablo also lash out at enemies. He can also throw a wrench in a boomerang-style short range attack.
Attackers can in a few varieties: vans that gave chase with gunmen blasting out of rear doors, motorcycle pursuers that tried to damage IRIS and bang her off the road and a bigger mech menace. The demo ended when I reached that last enemy type and it seemed like the mech would be at least be a mini-boss in the final version of LocoCycle.
LocoCycle looks much better in person than in the trailers released thus far and the controls felt smooth. Twisted Pixel’s Jay Stuckwish said that games like Spy Hunter and Road Rash were inspirations to the dev team, to the point where the motorcyclist enemies are called Rashers. It’s not necessarily going to be the first game people run out and get when it makes its Xbox One launch day debut but LocoCycle does have Twisted Pixel’s trademark humour in full effect. Look for it for $US19.99 on the Xbox Marketplace when the Xbox One launches.