ATV Offroad Fury
|a game by||Rainbow Studios, Inc.|
|Editor Rating:||8.5/10, based on 1 review|
|Rate this game:|
Who would've thought quad racing could be so darn fun? Not me, that's for sure. But soon after I fired ATV up I knew I'd be hooked for hours--it's that good. Unless you've played Motocross Madness for the PC, you've never experienced an off-road racer like this. The sense of space is simply awesome. You can literally see for miles into the clear (just a touch of fog) rolling landscapes. It's very impressive. And, to their credit, Rainbow Studios pulled it all off without sacrificing graphic detail. The colors are sharp and vibrant, the shading expertly done, and the textures very realistic. But as good as they are, the graphics are only part of the story. Racing the quads over the dynamic terrain is the real treat. It doesn't matter if it's a snow track or one of the desert courses, the monstrous hills and valleys are the perfect catalyst for incredible high-flying maneuvers. The physics are only semi-realistic--in other words, launching your quad 300 feet over a giant hill is no problem. I spent hours perfecting the art of jumping for distance and placement (the free-roaming environments provide plenty of terrain to practice). In the game the key to keeping your momentum on multiple jumps is landing on the down-slope of the next hill. It's obvious the developers did this to reward good jumping technique. Aside from the lack of a first-person view I couldn't be happier with this one. Oh, multiplayer (up to four player) is fantastic as well.
A quality PS2 game from Sony? Yeah, I'm shocked too. But that's what ATV is. With an awesome physics model and beautiful, open terrain that puts Smuggler's Run to shame, every racing fan who owns a PS2 should buy this right now. What's more, the Al is tough, but not impossible. That means learning the setup and practicing each track is the only way to win in ATV. Problem is, rookie drivers might get so frustrated they'll give up on the game early on. I think Rainbow could have been a little more forgiving, or added a difficulty option. Despite the fact it gets a little repetitive after you've completed most of the races, ATV is solid.
Man, the PS2 is where it's at for all things extreme. Slap this title right up on the shelf next to SSX and you'll have two of the best racing/trick hybrid games of recent memory. The emphasis here is definitely on the racing, which draws you in with brilliantly conceived courses and fiendish A.I. Any game that has me swearing as I slip just out of third place, only to immediately restart the race, is great in my book. My only complaints are that there could be more modes and more unlockable features. The multiplayer and cross-country modes are just a touch on the light side, and could've been deeper. But who doesn't want more of a good thing?