When I first saw Rocket League I expected it to be one of those Internet fads, a game that surges in popularity for a few weeks, everyone talks about it and constantly plays it and then it slowly fades away and becomes forgotten (*cough* Slender *cough*).

What it turned out to be in the end is not a fad, but rather a very polished and even more so addictive game. And now, many months after release, Rocket League is not only going strong but is also getting ready for a major free patch.

And what a patch it is, I say with childish glee.

There's a whole bunch of small changes and balance tweaks that you can read in the actul patch notes, what I'd like to focus on instead is the mutator system.

If you've ever played an Unreal Tournament game you already know what this is about, for the rest of you, allow me to explain. The mutator system in Rocket League is essentially the use of custom game options.

You have you standard ones such as options that control boost (from no boost to infinite boost), ball weight, speed and things like that. Fairly small changes that will shake up a match but aren't terribly exciting. On the other hand, the six special options are exciting. I postponed writing this article several times because I could see that shortcut icon taunting me from the edge of this window.

So what are they exactly? They are, in order:

Beach Ball – A huge, slow, lightweight ball with a lot of bounce

Cubic – Cube shaped ball and recharging boost

Demolition – Demolish opponents on contact in a high gravity matchup

Moonball – Low gravity action with a whole lot of boost

Pinball – The ball is small, light, fast and bouncy… and a lot to handle

Time Warp – Slow down the action as you get close to the ball

I'll be perfectly honest, while I do enjoy the mutators some of these are way more fun than the others. The worst performing on the (patent pending) "annoy-o-scale" is Time Warp. The idea itself sounds great on paper but paper is a flimsy thing. The intention was to provide some amazing opportunities for skilled play while making you look as cool as possible. What it actually ends up being is a standard match that is almost constantly spent in slow motion, even when you yourself are doing barely anything of note which as you might imagine isn't terribly exciting.

Another one I disliked was Pinball although this one is probably due to personal preference rather than it being a bad mode. The ball is simply too bouncy to actually control properly and a lot of the goals I've done always felt like they were more the work of luck than any input I've given to it.

So while those two I didn't enjoy the other 4 pretty much vacuumed up all of my free time today.

My favorite, by far, is Moonball. Its a lot more interesting than you would expect from a low gravity mod. Due to how Rocket League works and your need for constant jumping around in order to navigate the ball you really need to take care of how and when you do so because it takes a while for you to come back, especially if you boosted.

I sucked something fierce when I first played the mode but after a few rounds I started getting the hang of it and it just feels great when you do all the right moves and outplay your opponent by tricking them in to jumping prematurely thus making them basically float out in to space while you go ahead and score.

The mutators probably won't be the main mode of play for many once their freshness runs out but they are still an excellent addition to an already fun game. So if you own Rocket League or plan on buying it any time soon, give them a try while everyone is still equally bad, its damn good fun.

Please Log In to post a comment