Unfortunately, in real life jetpack techncology hasn’t quite caught up with our imaginations; bulky, loud, slow, and expensive they just don’t meet the expectations set by their film and gaming counterparts. I think the last time I took control of a jetpack in a videogame was playing Grand Theft Auto San Andreas. Exploring the open world of San Andreas with the jetpack was massive amounts of fun and although the game’s jetpack design was clearly inspired by the bulky prototypes you see in real life, it doesn’t have the weight restrictions, unbearable noise, or slowness to ruin the fun.
Now, there’s another sandbox jetpack experience available for gamers called Radical Rockits. Developers Rage Squid describe the game as being “a physics jetpack sandbox without any objectives” which sounds like the perfect recipe for fun to me. There’s nothing to win, nothing to collect, all you have to do is speed through the air over a colourful island using a jetpack whose rocket design is clearly based more on fun than overcoming boring real life limitations.
The game’s cheerful aura is one of the best things about it. Controls are simple, with players using one hand to control the jetpacks thrusters, and the other to control direction. That said, though the controls may be simple, actually keeping the jetpack under your control is much more difficult. The game’s visuals are enjoyably cartoonish, and your character’s spins, flips, and dives are fast and exhilarating. Even when you lose control of the jetpack and go diving towards earth, there’s no violent disturbing end; you simply respawn with a tap of the space bar and start back up in the air again.
Radical Rockits isn’t just a single player experience, either, you can play locally with up to 4 players split screen, or play a co-op mode where players try to control one character together.
Radical Rockits is free to download here for PC and Mac, and the file size is a tiny 65MB and 66MB respectively. Time for takeoff!
Images via RageSquid