Some three years after it first arrived on PC in Early Access, Teardown brings its voxel-smashing antics to console. Combining destruction and heist action, it’s safe to say there’s not much else like this out there – and even if it is sometimes challenging, we can’t quite get enough.
Jumping into Teardown’s campaign, things start out fairly easy. We’re simply asked to destroy a building. Great! You’ve got a sledgehammer in your inventory, or you can jump into the driving seat of a range of diggers and other industrial vehicles. There’s no right or wrong way to go about things: we preferred to swing around our sledgehammer, but we did find some structures were just a bit too tough to contend with. For those, a vehicle – or explosive barrel – will do the trick nicely.
Not long after, though, Teardown gets a bit more challenging. Rather than simply causing destruction, you’ve got to break into a complex and steal something important. You’re free to infiltrate however you want, and to start with, the amount of carnage you cause doesn’t matter. But soon, you’ll be put against the clock, with just 60 seconds to grab three key items and make your getaway. It’s not destroying walls or smashing windows that sets off the alarm: it’s picking up the first item. And so you’ve got time to plan your route, clear a path and ensure everything’s laid out for your escape. It’s still quite a challenge, though, and you don’t have much time to make a mistake.
One of the things we most love about Teardown is just how much content there is. Outside of the campaign, there’s a wealth of other modes to jump into. First are standalone challenges, putting you against the clock or testing your skills in other ways. How much destruction can you cause in 60 seconds, for example?
A player-favourite is bound to be sandbox mode, which lets you explore a selection of the game’s environments without any restrictions or targets. You’ll have instant access to all tools so you can simply let loose in destroying however you see fit. The only downside here is that you’ll need to have played through the campaign before additional environments will unlock.
There’s also a range of mods available to explore, offering up a curated selection of player-created content. There are new environments you can smash up to your heart’s content, along with some complete twists on gameplay, like a rally racing track.
That’s all before we’ve even got onto the game’s DLC packs: there’s a mini-campaign to be found in Art Vandals, offering up new missions and maps, and the brand new Time Campers campaign, which has serious Back to the Future vibes. If Back to the Future was all about causing as much destruction as possible, that is.
We’ve been playing on PS5 and can say the game looks great, whether you’re playing on the mode that favours performance or the mode focused on visuals. Thankfully, even on the visual-centric mode, we haven’t experienced any real dips in performance and it still targets 60fps. If you’ve got a compatible TV, however, you might prefer to opt for performance mode to make use of Teardown’s 120fps support.
There’s a lot of fun to have here, and we applaud the way Teardown manages to combine creativity, destruction and skill to form a game quite unlike anything else we’ve played. Even its most challenging missions are thrilling to complete, and any failures can simply be chalked down to you not planning well enough. And, well, if you simply feel like smashing stuff up, head over into sandbox mode and get friendly with your wrecking tools.
Teardown is available from 15th November on PS5 and Xbox Series X/S. It’s also available on PC via Steam.