How to play the free Outriders demo - and our first impressions

How to play the free Outriders demo - and our first impressions


(Image: © Square Enix)

Can't wait until April to get your hands on Outriders? Or simply want to try the co-op sci-fi looter shooter out before you buy it? Then you're in luck as Square Enix is offering players the chance to do just that.

Outriders may not be officially released until April 1, but Square Enix has released a free demo ahead of the game's release to give players the chance to try out the title beforehand.

So gather up the squad, here's everything you need to know about the free Outriders demo including when it's available and how you can play.

Outrdiers: our first impressions

Here at TechRadar, we've been trying out the Outriders demo for ourselves and not all of us are particularly impressed. Check out the video above where TechRadar's gaming editor Vic Hood, senior gaming writer Adam Vjestica and video producer Matt Phillips discuss the sci-fi looter shooter's pros and cons - and whether they'll be buying the full version at launch.

What is Outriders and what does the demo include?


(Image credit: Square Enix)

Outriders is an upcoming sci-fi co-op shooter from Square Enix and People Can Fly, which was initially due for release in December 2020, before being delayed to February 2021 due to "operational challenges" caused by Covid-19. This February release window was then narrowed down to February 2, but now we won't get our hands on the game until April 1. 

Set in a dark sci-fi universe, Outriders can be played with up to three other players and is a "drop-in-drop-out" shooter, meaning players can join and leave without affecting the game.

The demo will allow you to play the game’s prologue and opening chapter, up to the “showdown against first rival Altered,” although after defeating ‘Gauss’, you’ll be able to go back and explore the world, with some further side missions being unlocked. It's worth noting that you can't play co-op until you've completed the game's prologue. The prologue is about an hour-long but does stand between you and matchmaking. But once it's completed, you can play with others whenever you want.

Players will also have access to four character classes up to level seven. This means you will be able to unlock and pick four abilities, plus spend two skill points, and try different variations among the characters therein – there will be six character slots in the demo, too. In addition, you can progress to World Five where resources are capped at "generous" amounts.

According to the developers, "the further you get in the full Outriders story, the more twisted, exotic and powerful both gear and enemies will become." You can find out more here.

What time does the Outriders demo release and what platforms is it available on?


(Image credit: Square Enix)

The Outriders demo went live on February 25 at 5pm GMT / 12pm EST / 9am EST (or 4am AEDT on February 26) and will run beyond the game's official release on April 1. 

The Outriders free demo is available on PlayStation 5Xbox Series XXbox Series SPlayStation 4Xbox One and PC (Steam & streaming with Nvidia GeForce Now).

How to play the Outriders demo


(Image credit: Square Enix)

The Outriders free demo is available to download from the online stores for whichever your preferred platform is. Simply search for Outriders in the search bar, click on the "Outriders free demo" and download. Make sure it's definitely the free demo though and not the Outriders pre-order.

Will my progress from the Outriders demo carry on to the full game?

Yes! Your progress from the demo will carry on to the full game, as long as you use the same platform account as you played the demo with. So if you played the demo on Steam, your progress won't carry to your Epic Games account, for example.

What file size is the Outriders demo?

The Outriders demo download size is:

  • PC: Minimum 24GB (possibly more after decompression) 
  • Consoles: Minimum 22GB (possibly more after decompression)

Does the Outriders demo support cross-play?

It does. But the developers have stipulated that cross-play will be in beta form in the demo and will need to be manually turned on in the game settings.

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