Outriders: Everything we know about People Can Fly's newest shooter
© Square Enix
Tips, tricks and info on the latest from the Bulletstorm developer
People Can Fly are probably best known for their wacky arcade shooter Bulletstorm, but their portfolio is packed with huge franchises and fan favourites. Painkiller, Gears of War, and even an assist with the development of Fortnite have shown People Can Fly's pedigree, and now they're coming back with looter shooter Outriders.
Taking aspects from a lot of the games they’ve worked over the years, Outriders is a third-person shooter with a robust cover system and up to three-player coop. Players will be cast as the titular Outrider, a soldier meant to protect the last of humanity on a new and hostile planet called Enoch.
But things don’t go very well for the outriders when they arrive ahead of the settlers, after a strange signal decimates their forces and transforms the others. Now, thirty years later, the last of the humans are fighting themselves as the signal continues to wreak havoc on the planet, and the outriders have to find a way to stop all of the chaos once and for all.
On your journey to find the source of the signal, you’ll be collecting new weapons and armour, much like Destiny and other looter shooters, so you’ll be constantly swapping for better armour and powerful buffs. You can even replay missions to hunt for the best loot and grind a little bit more experience too.
Because you won’t just be using the weapons you find along the way, as Outriders comes with a class system that lets you choose between the lightning-fast Trickster, burning hot Pyromancer, and overwhelming Devastator. Each class comes with a host of abilities and skills that will let you tear up the battlefield and overcome colossal challenges. Some of the abilities will let you teleport around the map as the trickster, or unleash huge crowd control moves as the pyro, and they can be used effectively on your own or in combination with your teammates.
Where People Can Fly have really innovated is in how players heal. You’ll need to do more than just take cover for a few seconds to regain health in Outriders, and there’s no support class for teammates to help each other out with. Instead, Outriders wants players to stay in the action, and lets each class heal itself in a different, but equally violent way. Tricksters have to get kills up close to heal, while Devastators can be a little further back. Pyros only heal by killing an enemy they’ve set alight before the fire dies. This leads to situations where tricksters are fighting behind enemy lines while devastators are taking the aggression head-on, while Pyros dance from person to person picking out targets after lighting them up.
Outriders: Release Date
No official release date has been confirmed yet for Outriders, with the announcement trailer claiming the game will arrive in Summer 2020. Unfortunately, the reveal trailer that released a few days ago states that Outriders will instead arrive sometime in Winter 2020.
Outriders will be available on PS4, Xbox One, and PC, with no immediate plans for a Nintendo Switch release. Outriders will also be available at some point on the PS5 and Xbox Series X, although they may release later than the current generation versions.
Announced at E3 2019, Outriders marked the first game from People Can Fly since its spilt with Epic in 2015. Since then, the studio has spent the last four years developing Outriders.
So far we haven’t seen much of Outriders, with only the announcement trailer, developer diary and the reveal trailer that released a few days ago to sink our teeth into. But while the trailers didn’t show off any actual gameplay, it did give the viewer a good look at out to expect from the game, with explosive magical powers, gargantuan enemies and a mysterious story.
We also got to see a lot of different environments from squalid cities, lush forests, and even some creepy ruins, although none of them looked very friendly.
The trailers highlight the story of the game, with humanity forced to embark on a dangerous attempt to colonise another planet in order to survive. They also showcase some of the various monsters and people you’ll come into contact with on your journey to find the source of the Signal and the strange anomaly it wields.
Outriders: Tips and Tricks
1. Cover isn’t always your best option
After playing Gears of War you might think your only hope in surviving the deadly world of Enoch is to hide behind every piece of chest-high cover you come across, but in Outriders you don’t’ need to be scared if you get caught out of cover. With plenty of movement abilities and massive area of effect attacks, running out in the open might be the most advantageous way to play.
2. Make sure you know how to heal
Remember, it's entirely up to you to keep your health topped up. Every class heals in different ways and it's up to you to make sure you know what you’re doing. If you’re the close quarters trickster you should be getting in the face of your enemies, while the pyromancer can be picking them off from a distance. You’re obviously capable of playing however you want, but when things get rough you should be moving into whatever position you need to be in to keep your health going up.
3. Abilities cool down fast, don’t hesitate to use them
It can be tempting to hold on to your massive area of effect abilities for when you really need them, but most of the abilities on offer, even the most deadly ones, only take a couple of seconds to cool down. Don’t hesitate to use them frequently whenever an opportunity presents itself.
4. Watch the ground
Battles in Outriders can get pretty hectic, with explosions, lightning and bullets flying across the screen. Some enemies have an equally devastating list of abilities as you do, and a lot of them can ravage the battlefield, although it can be hard to see where exactly they’ll strike. Keep an eye on the floor and you’ll see glowing circles showing you exactly where the attacks are going, giving you the chance to get out the way.
5. Disrupt enemy abilities
A lot of the bosses biggest attacks require a charge up, indicated by a bar appearing above their head. Shooting them won’t slow it down, but a melee strike will. Make sure you or a team is close enough to get in there and disrupt these attacks before they level your entire team. A lot of these attacks leave lasting effects on the battlefield that can catch you out in all the chaos, making it all the more important to cancel them before they finish.
6. Coordinate attacks
It might feel a little obvious but in Outriders, teamwork is key. And that doesn’t just mean some basic flanking. The abilities of each class complement each other in some incredibly devastating ways and players should experiment with combinations to find the most effective way to clear your route forward. The trickster has an ability that holds a large group of enemies in place, which is perfect for the Pyro or Devastator to deal some massive damage before they all run away.