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EA Canada



# of Players:

By: Matt C. on November 5, 2000

The only snowboarding game that I ever enjoyed before SSX was Cool Boarders 3. The rest were merely ho hum or absolute crap. When I first saw footage of this game from E3, I wasn't impressed at all. It looked like any other snowboarding game except with huge jumps.

Boy was I wrong. Calling SSX anything but revolutionary would be an insult to EA Canada. SSX is easily the best snowboarding game ever created.

The first thing you'll notice when beginning SSX is how responsive the controls are. There is never any on screen delay to your controller movements and your character will never feel sluggish or slow. In other words, the controls are dead on. The only thing some gamers will hate about it is that the game requires you to "charge" up your rider before going over a jump. By not doing so, you won't turn and move as fast while you're in the air. I don't mind this setup since it was in Cool Boarders, but some might find it annoying.

Simply racing down the course trying to finish first won't get you very far in SSX. You must master executing and landing good tricks to completely master this game. Performing more tricks will fill up your adrenaline meter, which in turn allows you to speed boast more efficiently.

Probably the biggest draw in SSX is the insane courses. When my friend and I first saw the flyby of one of the slopes, we couldn't help but grin like idiots. Never before have I seen such creativity in a racing game's courses. Each of the courses are very long in length and pack more shortcuts than you can shake a stick at. Simply trying to find all the shortcuts in each course will keep you occupied for days. Maybe even weeks!

As for the graphics, they are just as impressive as everything else in the game. All eight riders are well animated and never look blocky or choppy in their movements. The environments are ridiculously detailed and are crystal clear. I tried looking for pop-up or fog that usually appears in a launch title, but none could be found. Even in the 2-player mode, the graphics are nearly as sharp with very little of the textures scaled down.

Music in SSX is performed by Mix Master Mike, who really did an excellent job in creating songs that fit the title well. However, kinda like Metal Gear Solid 2, the soundtracks change their rhythm depending on the current situation on how well you are boarding. This happens in realtime and is pretty cool to hear.

All in All, SSX is perhaps the best of the PS2 launch games. I haven't played all of the games yet so I won't jump to conclusions. The only thing keeping SSX from a "10" is the minor slow down found during some races. Its not really that bad so go out and buy SSX. Don't bother buying Cool Boarders 2001 or that ESPN boarding game because SSX easily beats them both.

Graphics: 9 Sound: 9 Music: 10 Replay Value: 9
Overall Score: 9.8

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