Racing Review

Overpass – Review | An Off-Road Challenge

I am a big fan of games whereby I can hop behind the wheel of an automotive of some description, rev an engine to breaking point and blitz a track with the refined grace of a decapitated mongoose. The thrill of poorly tackling each corner, likely crashing into every vehicle on the grid, is like a shot of adrenalin. I also like to slow down from time to time, however rare that may be. Take a break from the chaos. Overpass is one such game…although that doesn’t make it good.

In theory, Overpass is a thinking man’s game. This is not a race, this is an off-road obstacle course. You are supposed to take every bend, every hump, every facet of the course layout, and move with precision to nab the best times – or at the very least, not wreck your suspension. The problem Overpass has, is that it does none of this very well. It has grandiose ambitions but utterly fails to deliver.

Overpass - Car

Within seconds of starting the game, the cracks begin to show – like a builder hard at work. The very act of moving in Overpass is a disjointed mess. Your car simply doesn’t interact with the ground it is supposedly resting on. Tire tracks in the tutorial are non-existent (although they do appear later), there is no dirt or mud kickup when driving and going through water provides you with a distinct lack of splash or animation. You feel like you are floating above the track, and not really interacting with it. This is made even worse with the endlessly droning engine sound, which is a constant whine regardless of what is actually going on. It sounds like you are driving in first gear, at 70mph.

Despite the complete lack of visual and audio feedback, there is actually a somewhat in-depth set of mechanics and systems hiding under the hood. Your car drives slower and is harder to control when plodding through mud. Driving up hills is more difficult on certain terrains, forcing you to slip and slide over more stable ground. You even take damage if you are going too fast when tackling bumps in the road. Mechanically, the game is almost competent and certainly had potential.

Unfortunately, despite the hefty mechanical depth, the game is far too rough to warrant playing, bordering on flat-out unfun to play the vast majority of the time. The games physics engine is just not cut out for the task at hand. Your vehicle gets caught on every aspect of the track – even flat surfaces from time to time. Most trials have you slowly scaling a rocky hill, with no friction, with your only comfort being the ear-bleeding sound of your engine. When your physics-focused Driving Sim has jank physics, you are not only fighting the games preordained challenges, but also an alternate reality Sir Isaac Newton.
Overpass - Bridge

Things get even worse when you factor in the aforementioned damage system. With your vehicle unrealistically approaching and exiting, every obstacle, you are almost guaranteed to take damage, typically unwarranted. This damage is run destroying, gimping your ability to actually control your car. This further adds yet another layer of frustration to the onion of boundless despair. Throw in massive time penalties for missing (and even completing…) an obstacle and actually nabbing a halfway decent time is a pipedream, even hours into the game.

Overpass comes with a number of modes, ranging from a lengthy career, multiplayer modes and a veritable horde of single event-based courses. You also have a garage full of UTV’s and ATV’s to mess around with. UTV’s are your typical four-wheeled car, whilst ATV’s are your quad bikes that come with a leaning mechanic to make everything feel a little bit more awkward. The career mode is the real meat of the experience, with a large grid of event nodes for you to complete. Do enough events, and score high enough, and you can head into a championship to get a taste of true victory. The content is certainly here, it’s just not very good.

Even if you put aside the long list of negatives Overpass has managed to rack up, you still have to contend with the nightmare that is the length of each course. It is not uncommon for a single race to last upwards of 15 minutes, with many events requiring multiple races to complete. Spending a solid 45 minutes on a string of races is quite the time investment. When you take those previously put aside negatives, and insert them back into the discussion, then Overpass very quickly becomes an exercise in torture.

Truly the final nail in the dirt-covered coffin that is Overpass, is the graphics and performance. The game looks passable from a distance, with decent environments and vehicle models. Look a bit closer and the game will reward you with some fairly ugly textures. When driving around in the mud you will also bump into a fair amount of pop in, as well as frame rate that likes to start low and stay that way. I played this on the Nintendo Switch, so cannot comment if this is the same on all platforms.
Overpass - Green

Overpass is a game that tries to follow the age-old adage that “slow and steady wins the race”. It’s a shame then that the game is rarely steady, it applied the slow to the framerate and actually winning the race requires an inhuman amount of tolerance for badly designed games. Overpass is as rough as the terrain it wants you to navigate, and unfortunately I have to say the following:


Overpass can be bought digitally on Humble Bundle or Epic Game Store for PC. It can also be bought on the PlayStation 4, XBox One and Nintendo Switch console stores.

Many thanks to Bigben Interactive for the review copy.

Got frustrated like our reviewer? Why not check out Zombie Army 4: Dead War? Shooting zombies is a great way to release stress.

If you’d like to see more articles from us, please remember to follow us on Twitter🐦 and consider turning notifications on. Or type in your E-mail address and click the button for free email updates. You can also come chat with us on Discord.

Support High-Quality And Detailed Coverage

Want to support the cost of us bringing you these articles or just buy us a coffee for a job well done? Click the Ko-fi button below. You can even find some digital goodies in our shop~!