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« Why The Thought Of Reviewing Mass Effect 3 Gives Me A Stress Headache (With Spoilers) | Main | What's Gonna Be Awesome In 2012? »

Why I Hated... SSX

I rent alot of games, some good, some bad. When I rent a game I can't bring myself to finish I'll let you guys know why. Learn from my mistakes!

Remember when SSX was a big deal? Remember when Tricky came out and that advert played "It's Tricky" and that snowboarder with the afro was doing mental tricks and it looked awesome? Remember when you heard about them making a game called "SSX: Deadly Descents" and it was supposed to have guns in it and shit, and then remember how EVERYONE hated that idea and the people making the game got sad and pussied out and were forced to make just another boring SSX game, but tried to arbitrarily change things up just enough so that they wouldn't get bored as fuck making it? I remembered all these things within mere minutes of turning SSX on, and I wasn't happy about it.

The first thing you're treated to in SSX (which now standsWingsuits: An early contender for worst mechanic of 2012 for "Snowboarding, Surfing and Motocross"... process that for a second...) is a tutorial, which sees you jumping out of a plan to learn the trick system. It's very important that they take the first 5 minutes of the game to teach you how to perform unuseful tricks, because just wiggling the stick in a direction whilst maybe holding the right trigger won't perform any tricks at all (hint: that's sarcasm). It seems absurd to me that a game where all the tricks are only a platform to increase boost would, at the forefront of the game, attempt to teach you the finer points of selecting which hand you want to grab which side of the board with. You go off a ramp, you wiggle the stick a bit, you perform a trick. THAT'S IT! Stop trying to pretend you've made a deep, snowboarding trick game, you've made a racing game that happens to be on snow and happens to have tricks. Doing tricks gives you more boost but that's it, and unlocking your super-trick does absolutely fuck all, except giving you infinite boost for a little while.

The next tutorial is to show you how the racing mechanics work. You move left and right to avoid obstacles and right trigger is boost. That's basically it. You jump depending on the button layout you choose, with either the "classic" SSX controls with buttons doing things, or the other control scheme , which is basically lifted straight from the Skate games, with the right stick doing your stuff. It works well enough, except for the fact that none of the jumps in the tutorial are big enough to do your super tricks off.

Tutorial: Press no buttons to grind flawlesslyAfter the tutorial you unlock a pretty troubling achievement: "That Was Easy - 5G" which informs you that you have unlocked every mode in the game. It's less than encouraging to unlock every single mode in a game after 10 minutes of playing, and that it was a 5 point achievement is pathetic. The first race you take part in is also a farce, with almost no challenge, being able to beat it simply by steering. After the race you're made aware of the game's loot system, in which you buy new items for a racer that affect stats of speed, boost or tricks. How is "tricks" a quantifiable amount? Fucked if I know. But I'll tell you what you will need if you wanna snowboard down mountains: ARMOR! Yes, you equip gear inbetween races, and some races you can't even take part in without specific gear, so for example, a race in the dark with penty of stuff to crash into would require you to equip armor... That happens. You race in the dark and if you crash you lose armor, and when your armor is gone you lose health, instantly losing the race if your health runs out. It's fucking pathetic and unnecessary.

Other races require you to equip a wingsuit, which is ridiculous. You equip the wingsuit, which makes hitting the right bumper activate your characters wingsuit. The wingsuit is absolute shit. It doesn't act the way you'd want it to, instead it'll barely move you forward at all very counter-intuitvely. It, also, FOR SOME REASON, only last for a few seconds, which makes fuck all sense. It's not like wings stop working after a certain amount of time has passed, the only reason this is in the game is to stop you flying down the majority of the mountain just with your wingsuit, Jumping out of a helicopter, as it turns out, gets old quickbut in that case just DON'T PUT THE WINGSUIT IN THE GAME!!! Why insert a mechanic into the game, then nerf the fuck out of it so as not to unbalance the game, in a game in which you character BREAKDANCES ON THE BOARD IN MID-AIR!? You can;t just try and mix realism and unrealism so cavalierly, it grates against the soul like... some kind of cheesegrater... on some kind of cheese.

On top of this there are other problems: The 'grinding' is literally automatic, the presentation of the game is boring as hell ("Let's start them off in every race by jumping out of a helicopter, won't that be awesome!!!" NO), the game doesn't justify anything that happens in it at all (seriously, why even botjer trying to insert a story?), and when you build up your "Tricky" meter it plays a dubstep remix of the original Run DMC song, as a final slap in the face to the old SSX and any fans it still had. I hated the hour I played of it, thank god I only rented the fucker!



Reader Comments (2)

I completely agree. It's not what SSX used to be. Where's the half hour free-run from the top of the mountain to the bottom? That's the SSX I remember. As for the dubstep, WTF!!

March 3, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterSpazzy

Yep, not good at all :/

March 3, 2012 | Registered CommenterGaZZuM

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