Cool Boarders 2
Already being a 3-D polygonal game (for the most part), Cool Boarders has not experienced the extreme facelift the other Sony sports games have. Instead, most of the improvements went into the variety of stunts, increased number of courses and the competitive element of the game.
Increasing the number of courses from five to 16 will all but ensure plenty of variety for the long haul and is probably the biggest improvement in the game. Along with the increase in tracks, players will be able to perform all the old tricks and an additional 40 new maneuvers including: Front Side 540s, Back Side Alley-Oops and 720 Nosebones, to name a few. To hone your trick boarding abilities, all new half-pipe and downhill slalom courses have been added.
What would any good snowboarding game be if it didn't have a large selection of rad snowboardin' dudes to choose from? Well. Not much-Cool Boarders is no exception. Ten characters are available and ready for competition each with his or her own special abilities and talents. In addition to the characters, a ton of new boards are in stock, along with a customization option to create the perfect II Islope-slidin' device (board).
All the new features and options look great, but the real fun will probably be had in Two-player Mode. Fortunately, it looks very strong this year due to improved collision detection and game physics.
With all of these new features, Cool Boarders 2 looks to be a more involving and intense game. Look for a review in the coming months.
- MANUFACTURER - SCEA
- THEME - Snowboarding
- NUMBER OF PLAYERS - 1 or 2
Download Cool Boarders 2
Ten years ago snowboarders were about as welcome on the slopes as O.J. is... well, anywhere. Today they're considered the new denizens of the extreme sports movement.
Sony's Cool Boarders 2 has come into its own as well. Their second edition explores all things snowboarding has to offer, including half pipe competitions, two-player racing and 31 new tricks to perform. In addition, five different snowboarding afficionados shred the courses with their own specialties and strength points. You can dress them as tacky as you want--it doesn't matter, they're rad in any outfit. A unique new feature allows you to design your own snowboard, otherwise there is a selection of 18 Burton-brand snowboards to choose from. Hands down the most important improvement made is the addition of Two-player Competition Mode. And while a lot of work was done to make the variety of tricks extensive and entertaining, it can't hold a candle to a good old-fashion head-to-head race with a human competitor.
Polygonal characters and tracks are back as is the whole "rad" atmosphere complete with eight pumping tunes and smart-ass commentary provided by an anonymous dude. Put all that together with the droning crowd noise and all the elements are in place for the complete snowboarding experience.
I've always thought skateboarding and snowboarding was kind of a cool activity, but I would never really do it just because I don't want to take the chance of breaking any bones. So Cool Boarders is a nice way to try the sport without the hurt. What's nice is that the game isn't only for fans of snowboarding--it's arcade enough for everyone to enjoy. The graphics are decent but I've definitely seen better. I'm surprised that they didn't throw some more lighting effects in there or at least sharper polygons. Another touch that would have been nice are snow effects (i.e., flurries, drifts, etc.). A lot of the tricks you could pull off were very cool, and I liked that I had to do them with complicated button taps. If they were too easy to pull off, then you'd get first place every time! I liked the mode that lets yOL practice the tricks--one after another--until you run out of time. There isn't a huge amount of courses, but enough to keep you going, and the freestyle and trick courses make for great replay. I will say that my initial reaction wasn't all that great, but once I played more of it, I ended up having a decent time. One other point I wanted to bring up are the stereotypical voices. I've heard plenty of catch-phrases from Mountain Dew commercials to last me a lifetime, so the ones in Cool Boarders didn't i do much for me!
I wasn't a big fan of the original, but Cool Boarders 2 surprised me with its depth of gameplay. There are just too many cool tricks (about 100 combinations, in fact) and play modes. The 10 race courses are fun enough, but so is the practice slope that lets you perfect grabs, spins and other stunts. Of course, all the game's tricks and techniques mean Cool Boarders 2 takes a little getting used to, but they're what kept me playing.
This is the best snowboard game I've played on a home system. Cool Boarders 2 conveys a convincing sensation of speed and momentum, not to mention a feeling of peril when you're screwing up on the downhill courses. The lush, 3-D graphics really impressed me, as did the tons of moves, but it was the solid gameplay that really sucked me in. Best of all, CB2 is a blast to play for fans of the sport as well as casual observers like myself.
It No matter how hard I tried, I couldn't get into CB 2. The gameplay is a little frustrating, but once you learn how to do the different tricks, grows on you a bit. Unfortunately, the game is so sloppy, that it prevents CB2 from being a good game overall. The 3-D graphics look alright, but suffer from polygonal breakup. Also, the menus are ugly, and the music and sound grate on the nerves. Only get this if you MUST have a snowboarding game.
Last year, SCEA brought us Cool Boarders, an original game that was lacking in a few areas. Now the developers have had a year to listen to the critics, criticism and suggestions to develop Cool Boarders 2. Let me go on the record right now and say, what a difference a year makes!
Cool Boarders 2 is everything the original game should have been. Check these features. Nine new tracks, new moves and a two-player split screen or link mode. Is that not enough? How does four different game modes strike you? Everything you wished you could do in the original can now be done. I guess that is why they make sequels.
Cool Boarders 2 is a snowboarding simulation of sorts. Since snowboarding has become so popular and the original Cool Boarders sold fairly decently, it only made sense to release a sequel. If you are not familiar with snowboarding, it is similar to skiing except instead of using two skis you use a single board. Ah, forget it. If you don't know what snowboarding is, ask anyone else in the world to explain it to you and check back.
Let's get one thing out in the open right away. I was not a big fan of the original game. It was a great idea, but I was let down by the end result. With that in mind, I went into CB2 with mixed emotions. On one hand, I hoped that the game would address all the annoyances of the first. On the other hand, I could not shake the thought of these annoyances carrying over into number 2. After playing for 20 minutes, all my fears were put to rest.
One of my biggest complaints on the original game was the lack of options. You basically raced as a single player against nobody. Thankfully, this is no longer the case. Not only is there a racing mode, they did a great job in creating the starting positions of the racers. Most racing games make you start in last place and battle your way to the front. CB2 gives you the opportunity to determine your own starting position. Before the first race starts, you will have to hit the "Big Air" slope and perform two jumps. The Big Air jump is just as the name implies. You will board down a small slope with a jump at the end. It is up to you to pull off some killer stunts in the air. Your stunts are then scored on criteria including speed, distance, grabs, turns and landing. The total score you receive on the two jumps is added up and then ranked against the seven other computer-controlled competitors. If you finish first, you will be the first boarder out of the gate. If you finish last, you must wait for the other racers to start and then battle your way to the front.
After determining your starting position, it is race time. I can't stress enough how much adding this mode to the game enhanced it. Anyway, back to the race. As I said, once your starting position is determined, it is up to you to get the lead or keep it, depending on where you started, through nine different courses. Each course has a "Big Air" qualifying round before it, so you will always have the opportunity to control your own destiny.
Speaking of tracks, what an improvement! The tracks in this game were much better. I think the difficulty was set at the right level. The early tracks were fairly easy, but the farther you progressed into the racing competition, the more difficult they became. You will have to maneuver narrow paths along the edge of huge cliffs, fly through alleyways between two looming mountains, slalom through trees and avoid tons of other obstacles. Aside from the racing mode, the tracks are the single most improved aspect of the game.
The game does have three other modes of play, although personally it was hard to pry myself away from the competition mode. You can play in the Freestyle mode, which is virtually the same as the original game. This has you racing against the clock (or a ghost image), trying to score points performing tricks. Thankfully, you can now play this mode with a buddy on a split screen or via link cable. This option alone spiced up this event, but when I am by myself, I still prefer the competition mode. Next, you have the Half Pipe. This is a snow-covered half pipe that has you kicking your best tricks. You will be scored on a variety of criteria and it is good practice. The last mode is the Big Air mode. This is the same thing that is used to determine your starting position in the competition mode. This is a great place to go practice your moves before entering the competition, because starting position will make or break you.
This game is not without its flaws, however. Yes, they are fewer and further between and on a much smaller scale than the original, but they are still worth mentioning. My biggest gripe has nothing to do with the actual gameplay. I thought that the original game had the worst commentator in the history of video games (ok, maybe not the whole history, but close). I was wrong. The commentator in CB2 owns that distinction. Talk about annoying, worthless and irritating! He is just plain bad. Also, the game still had a slight pinball effect when you ran into something. I will say that it was much improved, but there were occasions that you would be knocked back and forth between two items like a pinball.
Another area of major improvement was the graphics. Well, I say major improvement, but that is not entirely correct. The backgrounds, courses and objects were improved. The way the snow looked was not. There was a ton of break-up in the middle of the white snow. Racing through trees and towns never caused break-up, but the snow itself did. I don't get it. Other than that, the boarders all look good and watching the replay after you pull off an exceptionally cool trick is pretty awesome.
What a difference a year makes. I commend the developers for not throwing the same crap out and slapping a 2 at the end of the name. This game fixes a majority of my complaints with the original (other than the commentator) and adds a bounty of new goodies. If the original did not impress you, I suggest you give this one a try. I think you may find it more to your liking. If you got into the first one, you will be in snowboarding heaven with number 2.
There's a new dose of downhill insanity speeding toward PlayStation shredders everywhere--Cool Boarders 2! A dramatic improvement over the first Cool Boarders, CB2 will feature 16 tracks and new gameplay options that include Season, Slalom, HalfPipe, Practice, and Two-Player Versus modes. Also incorporated into this year's effort are three difficulty settings, seven boarders, over 12 boards (you can even create your own), and 40 new maneuvers that include Front Side 540s and Caballerial Tweaks. The adrenaline rush hits the slopes later this year.