If you’ve played either of the first two Rock of Ages games, you’ll probably want a piece of the third.
I’m pleased to say that after a short hands-on with the game, it promises to offer more of the same, with some key new additions. Primarily, Rock of Ages 3: Make & Break gives players the ability to design their own levels. There’s also a campaign with six different game modes, access to community-created levels, fully-fledged multiplayer support, and the same zany humour you’d expect from the series.
That humour’s been dialled up for this entry, it would seem; the first level in the game’s career mode sees you roll a ball of sheep down a track. Katamari-style, there are some cows to avoid as you move, but should you hit them, they’ll get stuck in your whirling globe of bleating wool, making your no-longer-spherical ball move erratically. Sadly, not all of Rock of Ages 3 is about crafting balls of farmyard animals; there are plenty of regular rocks to roll too, but that comedy remains at the forefront throughout.
Like the previous games in the series, Rock of Ages 3: Make & Break splits its campaign between tower defence-style play and ball rolling. The defensive levels see you placing various defensive buildings as you attempt to thwart an enemy attack on your castle. Your opponent will roll a series of balls towards your castle’s gates, and it’s your job to stop them before they can cause major damage. Expect the usual types of tower defence items here: catapults, castle towers, explosive barrels and more. There’s also some more unusual options too – unruly cows, and the like. Rock of Ages is all about being zany, after all.
If you enjoy tower defence, there’s plenty on offer, but surely the highlight of the series is being in control of your rolling rock. Rock of Ages 3: Make & Break‘s campaign offers a few different types of level into the mix to keep things feeling fun: along with the standard ‘war’ levels that see you alternate between offence and defence, there are obstacle courses to complete, time trials to best, skeeball challenges and Humpty Dumpty levels. They mostly amount to the same thing: guiding your ball around a precarious track to reach a goal. The skeeball levels are particularly fun, however; hitting targets dotted along the track increases your score, which is decided by which goal you can land your ball in at the end of the track.
All that is just the ‘Break’ part of the game. For those who like to get a little more creative with their videogames, the ‘Make’ section allows players to create their own levels. You can place tracks for your ball to follow, as well as decorations and obstacles. How fiendish you want to be is entirely up to you. There’s the option to upload the level to allow others to play, and you can also play community-created levels. Essentially, then, Rock of Ages 3: Make & Break offers a potentially unlimited amount of content – and for anyone who enjoys the gameplay loop the series offers, that’s surely good news.
It’s also worth reiterating that almost all aspects of Rock of Ages 3 can be enjoyed in local multiplayer. And if there’s one thing more fun than rolling your ball around a track, it’s rolling your ball around with friends.
If you’ve enjoyed previous Rock of Ages games, it’s safe to say that there’s plenty for you to enjoy here, too. It takes the tried-and-tested formula and adds more functions and more zany humour to make the package bigger and funnier than ever. And if you’re a fan, you can’t ask for more than that.
Rock of Ages 3: Make & Break will be available on PS4, Xbox One, Switch, PC and Stadia on 2nd June.