Desert Child Image
Metascore
58

Mixed or average reviews - based on 8 Critics What's this?

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  • Summary: Assume the role of a young hoverbike racer who needs to figure out how to scrape enough cash together through racing and odd jobs to punch your one-way ticket to the Red Planet to enter the biggest race in the universe, the Grand Prix.

Trailer

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Desert Child - Official Trailer | E3 2018
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 1 out of 8
  2. Negative: 1 out of 8
  1. 80
    Desert Child is utterly unique. It blends the moreish action of hoverbike racing with an amazing DOS inspired aesthetic. It’s a short and sweet racing RPG that plays incredibly well in short bursts. Well worth picking up if you fancy a modernised retro title that does something different.
  2. Dec 20, 2018
    70
    It's an odd thing for a video game to bank so heavily on its aesthetics, but in the case of Desert Child, the plan works. This isn't a dense game, nor is it necessarily a complex game; instead, it's a simple title that suits retro gaming enthusiasts with good visuals, good music, amusing interactions, and a series of high-speed races.
  3. Dec 12, 2018
    60
    Grinding for slim rewards during the few hours it takes to finish Desert Child encourages you to think broadly about financial hardship. While that’s a worthwhile topic to consider, the inert world and thin gameplay aren’t enough to translate Desert Child’s core concept into an entertaining game.
  4. Dec 25, 2018
    60
    Desert Child delivers some nice retro-style graphics and a great soundtrack, but the game becomes repetitive and grindy very soon.
  5. Dec 11, 2018
    50
    Desert Child has a wonderful sense of style, and there are moments when it clicks. When you jet across the water on your bike firing a shotgun blast that shatters several televisions in front of you, or when you first start to wrap your head around the aesthetic of Mars, the game briefly, but brightly, shines. But Desert Child doesn't quite hang together, and by the end of its very brief runtime the things that seemed exciting just an hour prior have lost most of their luster.
  6. Dec 11, 2018
    50
    Desert Child is built upon the promise of solid ideas that don’t quite come together. And sadly, they’re so deeply intertwined that a mistake in one aspect of the game critically injures the other part of the game. Hoverbike racing is a neat central mechanic but it wears thin and is stifled by its lack of difficulty and useless upgrades.
  7. Dec 18, 2018
    35
    With a stronger central theme that went deeper than base critiques of the US and its cultures, Desert Child could have been much better. While its got style, it’s disappointing how little it does with it. Races are fine, the world it presents quickly becomes finding the quickest route to reach the end, and once reached it all ends so abruptly you can’t help but begin it again with the curiosity of there having to be something more. In the end, there isn’t that much more to it, and even an easy Platinum trophy on PlayStation 4 doesn’t make this a game I would recommend to anyone.

See all 8 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 0 out of 1
  2. Negative: 0 out of 1
  1. Jan 12, 2019
    7
    This is not a racing game. The main way to progress is to play a racing/shooting mini-game with a variety of maps of different aesthetics andThis is not a racing game. The main way to progress is to play a racing/shooting mini-game with a variety of maps of different aesthetics and goals for each race, but thats not how you will spend most of your time. One will spend most of their time exploring the world, and that is where this game shines. The world is designed as if it were in the cowboy bebop universe with music and tone to match. The overall art of this game is beautiful and the characters you interact with all have a unique quality. This game constantly references hip-hop and jazz, making one smile and laugh from time to time. I payed $11 for this game and have really enjoyed it, but I would wait for the price to drop. If the desert punk bebop vibe of this game interests you at all, I highly recommend it. I have played nothing like it, and would like to see more titles like this released in the future! Expand