In a world where most indie video games aren’t visually impressive, Ready or Not, by VOID Interactive, stands out as an ambitious project.
Despite a few areas that could benefit from additional refinement, the game stands out as a robust and distinctive experience, potentially unrivaled in its particular niche.
A Unique First-Person Shooter
Ready or Not has a very straightforward idea: it provides you with a good variety of missions for you and your friends to get in and try to complete their many objectives, such as arresting a suspect, collecting evidence, or saving all civilians. Your objective is to complete each assignment with the least amount of casualties possible. Missions can be completed both online and offline.
The offline mode, Commander Mode, is appreciated, but it’s pretty much just the online mode with AI squadmates. The police station in the game is just the lobby for the mission to start. While it helps with immersion when playing online, the same police station offline feels like an empty, lifeless area where you just wait a little bit while your real-life coffee gets ready before you start a mission. It serves no purpose except for having a locker that you use to change your equipment.
Graphics and Performance
The game looks great. Ready or Not is certainly a very good-looking game. It feels down-to-earth and grittier than most FPS games out there, especially when you are invading the meth lab or other horrible areas. When playing the Twisted Nerve mission, I felt disgusted by how dirty and miserable the house looked and I could almost smell it.
Related: 5 Best Loadouts in Ready or Not
The way things look is also somewhat anxiety-inducing. I could feel the anxiety of not knowing if anyone was waiting for me behind a door or ready to shoot me through the window of a dark room. The uncertainty of everything combined with the very immersive level design is something else. There’s something very intentional about how mundane things and annoying civilians get in your way that does help the game feel a bit more realistic.
Unfortunately, although the game looks great, I don’t have nice things to say about its optimization. I faced severe slowdowns even though I was playing the game on a high-end computer. I also faced a few bugs such as having the Options menu stick to my screen until I closed the game and some black screens that prevented the game from loading a mission.
As I mentioned before, the single-player campaign is not more than just the same thing that you see in the online mode. That said, there is this one neat mechanic in the offline gameplay regarding your squad mates and how they get stressed depending on what happens. Before each mission, you have to select your subordinates’ load-outs yourself, give them time off, make sure that they don’t get hurt, and make sure that they don’t just decide to retire because they’re stressed out and anxious all the time, which can happen if they always get shot.
The Multiplayer Experience
Ready or Not is a PVE game, meaning that you’re going to have a squad with you to bring orders to places filled with terrorists or meth addicts to take down AI suspects. Although it might sound simple enough, some of these missions can be incredibly tough at times. Sometimes enemies will headshot you right away as soon as they see you. You cannot just go in and shoot whatever you see. It will get you killed no matter how many layers of Kevlar you’re wearing.
To succeed when playing online, you have to coordinate with your teammates. Though I didn’t like it at first, it didn’t take me long to understand that this was part of the fun. One hour in and I was communicating with my squad as if we were fearful for our lives.
All these elements combined make Ready or Not a quite decent game for those tuned into this niche. Ready or Not is far from perfect and it does have some bugs and performance issues that might sour your experience at times, but it is a good game nonetheless. It delivers an experience that I don’t think any other game is capable of providing right now.
If you crave a tactical shooter with a realistic approach to the genre, this game might be exactly what you’re looking for. If the devs continue to work on it and clear up bugs, I’m sure it will become an amazing game. The love and passion deposited in this game are very easy to notice. This game, while not brilliant, is good and worth trying, especially if you’re looking for the kind of experience that it is trying to deliver. If anything that I mentioned about the gameplay sounds appealing to you, I’m sure you’re going to enjoy it.
- This article was updated on December 22nd, 2023