Riot: Civil Unrest – PC Review

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Genre: Indie, Simulation, Strategy
Developer: Leonard Menchiari, IV Productions
Publisher: Merge Games
Release Date: Feb 12, 2019
Edited by Thorstag

Not every game has to be a 200-hour masterpiece of a AAA game. Every now and then, it is more than worth the effort to sit down with a game meant to tell a story in a short amount of time. Riot: Civil Unrest is the perfect game for those times you have just thirty minutes, and you want to get in a little bit of game time.

Each map does not take long to complete; I was able to complete quite a few in under an hour. Though the game is short, it feels like just the right amount and any longer would feel like a drag. Riot is perfectly balanced for the short matches that make up the bulk of the game with interesting options, as well. Each map has two sides, either the police or the rioters, each with their unique strategy. The rioters often have way more people to field often triple or quadruple the amount the police have. In the making up for that though, you don’t get much variety, nor do you get very useful abilities while the police though having a great variety, often have very few units.

Riot looks very good for its style, though heavily pixelated, it fits and looks good. Each map doesn’t look the same either, all maps have a unique look to them, and well some maps are shared between the police side and the rioter side. There is enough variety that it doesn’t seem repetitive. The game could look better, though; there were times where I couldn’t figure out where units were or where one started and the next stopped. The game was also super easy to set up on multiple computers ranging from my mega screen main computer to my piddly little laptop, it ran great and was easy to change screen size.

Riot has four story campaigns; each can easily be completed within a few hours, even on the hardest difficulty. While it might seem at first to be far to short for each campaign, I found each was just long enough to take in the story. Even though each campaign didn’t have an over aching character leading the change, I was still able to connect to both sides and see the reason why they were doing such a thing. While the four campaigns were perfectly timed, another campaign would have felt just right with the others.

Riot: Civil Unrest, while short, very successfully managed to convey its message of looking at both sides of a conflict. As one of the games designed to make people think critically about conflict and what they see around them, Riot does its job amazingly well. I’m excited to see what comes out of IVP in the future. 

Pros

  • The perfect playtime for the game.
  • Looked very good in its pixelated style
  • Very easy to set up to any computer

Cons

  • The game could do with maybe one more campaign
  • The game felt to easy at times, often on rioter maps

Chebkitty gives Riot: Civil Unrest a Drastik Measure of 8.6 out of 10 (86)

If you would like to check out Riot: Civil Unrest you can find it on Steam for $16.99