1. Retro City Rampage is sort of almost there. The presentation is solid but it focuses more on jokes than gameplay and it wears a bit thin after a while.
2. This is basically a really easy version of the top-down GTA games w/ a bunch of little mini-games built in. It also has a lot of references to to 80's and 90's games and culture.
3. Lots and lots and lots of references.
4. I played the 3DS version. I don't think there was anything wrong w/ it at all but I'd recommend the PC or a home console version. This would be a fun game to pass around the controller w/ some friends w/. You could see who could pick out the most 80's and 90's games and culture references.
5. If, like most people, you don't have friends, go ahead and get a handheld version.
6. I would say the main issue w/ Retro City Rampage is it spreads itself too thin. The main gameplay is solid but never great. It never feels like it really hits its stride, esp. in terms of providing a nice progressive challenge. The mini-game sections are also fine for the most part but feel like interruptions rather than anything that adds true depth. Some of these mini-games are required to advance in the main plot-line and often have odd difficulty spikes which are very aggravating at times. It seems like more focus could have been placed on pacing rather than cramming every possible joke into every possible second.
7. Jokes are fine but I've yet to play a game that was worth playing solely for humor.
8. One of my gaming pet peeves is when there is a tough final boss that is fought in a different style than the rest of the game is. Retro City Rampage's final boss is pretty tough and is done as a level of a 2D racing game, which is not really done anywhere else in the game. This is pretty much just an example of what I was talking about in number 6 but I found it particularly annoying.
9. The open world aspect seems to be emphasized heavily but never struck me as especially fun. You basically just go around running down pedestrians or causing whatever mayhem you chose while the cops try to stop you. This is probably identical to what you would do in any GTA game but there is not much challenge and that makes it somehow unsatisfying. In the old GTA games one singular bullet was enough to end your rampage and that made it much more aggrandizing when you were finally able to steal the SWAT van or do whatever it is you set out to do.
10. There are also side missions you can do but you are really not directed toward them or encouraged to do them in anyway. I played a few. Didn't really feel like much of a departure from the rest of the game so I didn't really think about them from then on.
11. This has some cool graphics settings to fiddle w/ if you are into fiddling w/ such things. You can basically translate it it to they style of many different old consoles and PCs. Some of the gameplay is impossible in certain modes due to lack of colors but it's pretty fun regardless.
12. Even though Retro City Rampage didn't play great in the strictest sense, I still had a good amount of fun with it. It seemed to drag on a little too long and there were bits I rather disliked here and there but overall I'd say it's good enough that it is not a waste of time or money.
13. Damned by faint praise maybe but that's how I feel about it.