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 The Final Word game review

SSX Tricky -- EA Sports Big

If you are a fan of the first game, or newcomer to the series, SSX Tricky is everything the original was, only more refined. The courses flow much better, stunts are easier to control, and once mastered it is far easier to recover a botched trick and still land on your board without a full crash. The only gripe I had with the game is the fish-eye effect they use to give you a wider perspective on the course. It wasn't to bad, but atleast bad enough to give me a headache and make me feel a bit queasy after I quit playing a long session.

I was pretty excited to play this title, and while I am pretty happy with all of the improvements in the game, I am disappointed that they didn't add any challenge to the title. It is effectively everything that the first game should have been with some extras. Added are things like more stunts (although not more complicated to perform), more shortcuts through courses, more characters, new high-paid Hollywood voice talent, and new enhancements to the great, dynamic music/audio playback system.

The first SSX, I found challenging. It took me a significant amount of time to get all of my golds, and unlock all of the features. SSX Tricky took my spare time on two days and a late night on another day to complete with my first character (as with the first game, I picked Moby because he is has the most balanced control for my liking). Most tracks I was able to get gold on my first try, and the only track I had to actually repeat numerous times was the new Alaska course.

My biggest disappointment with the title is the fact that Pipedream is only a lame freestyle/single race choice once it is opened... giving me absolutely no compelling reward to try and solve it. In fact, after getting gold in all of the race and showoff events, I was disappointed that something more didn't become available... like some new course that would put Pipedream to shame (the new Pipedream is ok, but lacks the intensity of the original). To be honest, I'm not really interested in doing complete solves on the game with all of the characters, so hopefully I wouldn't be missing anything because of this, but frankly, I can't imagine what they could reward me with to compel me to put in that kind of play repetition. If something does turn up later, I'll take a second thought on playing all of the characters through.

As for the new characters. I really enjoyed some of the new stunt animations, and the super trick moves. I even had a great appreciation for the new menu system in the game. For instance, now if you win a track and only unlock the next track (you don't unlock boards or suits), it gives you a menu to pick the next track directly after you get your race stats. If you get a new board or suit, it takes you back to the character menu, so that you can put your new item to work immediately.

All in all a really good game, and a really good sequel. If you haven't played this series yet, this is the one to get. But, if you've already played the first to death, consider making this one a rental first so that you don't shell out $50 for what could be a couple of days of entertainment.

>>>>> 23.0/25 <<<<< R.I.P.
Graphics 4.5
Sound 5.0
Gameplay/Control 5.0
Longevity/Playability 4.0
Overall 4.5
Total 23.0