Bloody Rally Show bills itself as a ‘unique mashup of racing, car battle, and roguelite’, which, on paper, sounds like a really cool idea. It’s certainly a concoction of ideas that I haven’t come across before, whilst the old-school top-down camera reminded me a lot of Micro Machines, which is something that also caught my attention straight away.
Unfortunately, the execution of these ideas is a bit of a mixed bag. Whilst there is fun to be had with Bloody Rally Show, it can also feel a bit bland and repetitive to play.
Check out a gallery of screenshots down below:
The game lets you create your own driver, though their backstory is always the same: after being frozen in cryosleep for sixty-odd years, you wake up in a future that’s a bit… well… grim. You’ve also got to pay for your cryosleep bills, with the only option being to compete in some deadly racing to earn some cash. Fortunately, you were a skilled driver back in 2021, so you should fit in just fine here – whether or not you’ll survive to the end of a race is another thing though…
The racing itself should feel familiar to anyone who has played a top-down racer before, with players speeding through a variety of tracks and trying to finish in first place. What’s unique here is that Bloody Rally Show’s tracks are procedurally generated, meaning you’re not going to race on the same track twice. It’s a cool idea in theory, though the fact that tracks themselves are all simple in design and that the aesthetic of each one is a bit bland means that it’ll often be difficult to differentiate them from one another anyway. They just all start to feel the same in the end, with no unique features or landmarks on offer that you might typically find on a hand-crafted track.
Whilst racing, players are able to use a boost to try and get ahead of the pack. Whilst your boost can be re-filled by drifting across the track, there’s also a more unconventional means that lives up to the game’s ‘bloody’ title: running over pedestrians. Yep, in true Carmageddon-fashion, Bloody Rally Show has plenty of people running around that you can splatter on the track, which is oddly satisfying (in that ‘squelchy’ kind of way). It encourages players to go out of their way to run everyone over, and honestly, I just found it pretty funny to do.
“In true Carmageddon-fashion, Bloody Rally Show has plenty of people running around that you can splatter on the track, which is oddly satisfying (in that ‘squelchy’ kind of way).”
There’s also room for a bit of battling, with weapons found in some races that can be used to wipe out other drivers (and vice versa, so you’ll want to watch out for incoming fire). As a fan of battle-racing, I thought this was a really neat idea, whilst the fact that you can respawn back into the race quite quickly means that the stakes aren’t too high if you get destroyed yourself. There’s also a helicopter that flies around and attacks random drivers, adding a sense of unpredictability to races where you’ll never know when you might be targeted next. My only issue with the weapons was that it could be a little fiddly to aim them, but that’s something found across the board in the game; the cars of Bloody Rally Show can be floaty and it might take a while to figure out how to handle each track’s twists-and-turns perfectly, so you can expect the same when trying to blast other racers.
So the racing of Bloody Rally Show is fine, with enough ideas on offer to ensure that the repetitive nature of the tracks don’t feel like a grind to get through. Everything is spread across seasons in-game too, with players earning cash to purchase new cars or upgrade those that they own. The car customisation is impressively robust with plenty of different things to tinker around with, so I’m sure that will please petrol heads. There are even individual challenges to complete that test your skills in different ways, with each offering a cool little diversion that brings with it its own rewards. It’s a surprisingly fleshed-out single player experience with a lot on offer for players to check out.
I just found that I grew bored of it quite quickly. Players end up doing a lot of the same things over and over by the end, with little motivation to keep going in the long term. Again, it doesn’t help that the track designs lacked personality too, whilst the menu layout in-game was a bit busy and really fiddly to get through. There is a story that progresses as you play, but again, it didn’t do much to capture my attention.
“The car customisation is impressively robust with plenty of different things to tinker around with, so I’m sure that will please petrol heads.”
Fortunately, like the racing, it does have some cool ideas that ensure it doesn’t feel too drab. For one, the special races offer a more unique experience that focuses more on destruction – these were always fun to play through. You even get to take on the role a pedestrian and simply snap photos of races for cash, which changes the flow of the game and adds a whole new element of design to the experience. It’s not something you’ll want to spend too much time doing (and it’s VERY easy to die), but it shows that Bloody Rally Show does have its moments where it tries to innovate.
They just aren’t regular or consistent enough to make it feel like essential playing. Whilst Bloody Rally Show doesn’t do anything outright awful and does have its fair share of cool moments, I just found myself feeling a bit bored after a few hours play. There is multiplayer on offer, but it’s limited to local play, so I didn’t find myself sticking with that for too long either.
Bloody Rally Show Review
Bloody Rally Show is an alright racing experience, but I did find that it lacked the exciting spark to keep me playing for a long time. It has it strengths with its chaotic racing mechanics and robust vehicle customisation, but the repetitive track design and bland career mode did see me tiring of it quite fast. It’d be something if there was online multiplayer to sink my teeth into, but that’s local play only, so my chances to play it have been limited.
If you’re looking for an old-school racing fix that has clearly been inspired by Carmageddon, Blood Rally Show might be for you – just don’t expect it to keep your interest for too long.
Developer: Kodo Linija
Platform(s): Nintendo Switch (Reviewed), PlayStation 4, Xbox One, PC