Total Reviews: 7
Average Overall Score Given: 8.71429 / 10
Total Forum Posts: 0

SSX Tricky

Overall: I'm 40 years old. I'm supposed to think snowboarding is for 14-year-old caffeine addicts with nose rings.

But appearances lie. This suburbanite has nipple rings and a big enough caffiene habit that I bought my wife Starbucks stock fro christmas one year. I *like* this game.

Gameplay: Gameplay is simple enough with a gentle learning curve, lots of small rewards for small tricks, and bigger rewards for more complicated (but still reasonable) accomplishments.

The menus are simple, the user interface more or less self-explanatory, and the characters are funny, well-done, and have very distinctive styles.

Graphics: While not spectacular in the way of some xbox games, the visuals are well-done, and do nothing to take away from the gameplay. The animations are smooth and are always appropriate to what's going on - your character looks backwards when a competitor is catching up, for example. The cut-scenes are great.

Audio: The FX are good without being overwhelming, they provide good feedback on what you're doing. The music is varied enough to be enjoyable by everyone in my family.

Suggestions: The head-to-head mode makes the visual scene so narrow that it's difficult to see anywhere but in front of you.

Overall Score: 9.0 / 10 Burnout

Overall: Nice! Very good, easy-to-learn, hard-to-master driving game where the objective is simple: Get to the finish FAST, who cares about the other drivers!

Visuals are among the best I've seen, even on my high-end gaming PC. The playability is very good, and it's one I keep going back to for more fun. Good two-player action as well, with a top-n-bottom split screen.

The developer wisely spent not a single dime on licensed designs, product tie-ins, or other non-gameplay items. The result is a collection of fun, original track designs, and a varied group of cars that each have a different feel.

Gameplay: Excellent! The engine is realistic enough to not totally discard the laws of physics, without getting bogged down in the untra-realistic mode of some of the other racers (if I want real, I'll just get on the freeway).

Gameplay is fairly intuituitive, with the manual being pretty much unnecessary.

Graphics: Wow. I play on a 65" widescreen HDTV set, and this game looks phenomenal. Especially on replays. The use of motion blurring is about the best I have ever seen. This game really does work best on larger TV's. Tried it on my 32" and found it a bit challenging, mostly on the split-screen two-player mode. But, Wow. If I had any doubts about the capabilities of the 'box, this game wiped them clean.

Audio: Good. Music is simple and minimal, and is not really a part of the gameplay. Sound cues are good and a useful part of the same.

I give credit to the developers for not trying to get away with mediocre gameplay by putting in expensive, licensed music.

Suggestions: The ability to download new tracks would be great. Other than that, Excellent game!

Overall Score: 9.0 / 10 Star Wars: Starfighter - Special Edition

Overall: Interesting idea, familiar music and tie-in to a popular story line. Good voice acting, and anything from Lucas is presumed to be well-tested. But the execution is lacking, to me.

Gameplay: Don't know. Found it to be so unintuative that I gave up rather quickly. The gameplay is much like Descent, which I found to be equally disorienting and difficult.

Graphics: Good, but nothing spectacular. The price of the Star Wars franchise seems to be high enough that originality or creative visuals becomes prohibitive.

Audio: Nice, but nothing original. Smooth transitions - the owners of THX are thorough, and ensure good technical quality and consistency.

Suggestions: I'm not buying happy meal toys for $50 a pop. After several disappointing knock-off clones in the Star Wars family of games, I have learned never to purchase anything related to Star Wars until I have tried it out first.

Overall Score: 6.0 / 10

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