Freestyle Boardin' '99
|a game by||Atelier Double|
|Editor Rating:||7/10, based on 2 reviews|
|User Rating:||8.0/10 - 1 vote|
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With the success of Sony's Cool Boarders series, the appearance of a few imitators was inevitable. Few, however, were prepared for the avalanche of snowboarding titles that have appeared for all major systems in recent months. Riding the crest of this avalanche is Freestyle Boardin' *99, Capcom's first foray into this hot genre.
Following the trail blazed by Cool Boarders 2, Freestyle Boardin' '99 combines a number of real-world snowboarding events into a single extreme tournament.
In addition to the traditional slalom and downhill events, would-be X-Games competitors can hone their skills in trick, halfpipe and big air competitions. Rather than improving your performance by purchasing better equipment, Freestyle Boardin' departs from most of its predecessors by allowing you to edit your rider's skills as you progress through a tournament. Up to 10 credits, which can be used to bolster your performance in five different categories: max speed, cornering, technique, power and recovery, are awarded after each event based on player performance.
Aside from the game's innovative skills editor, Freestyle Boardin' '99 looks and plays suspiciously like Cool Boarders; in addition to the graffiti-inspired logos and alternative soundtrack, the game also has an annoying, disembodied voice that critiques your performance. ("Baby, go home to mama!") While you're free to perform tricks anywhere on the course, Freestyle Boardin' rewards you with trick points only at well-marked ramps, as was the case in Cool Boarders. You're also restricted to the same Death Star trench-like courses, which don't even branch to allow exploration. (Can I hear a "Bogus!," mister cool-guy announcer?).
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Freestyle Boardin' '99 gives snowboarding a bad name, with dismal graphics and game-play that's best suited for the bunny slopes.
From the start, Freestyle Boardin' avalanches gamers with awful draw-in and ill-defined tracks. And the dreary headbanging music doesn't help the game emerge from the snow. FB99's only highlight is the easy controls that make performing tricks a simple task. But those same controls make the game too easy to conquer--even in the hardest levels. Moreover, once you've completed the game, you'll feel no joy replaying the 10 drab courses.
If you want the best in snowboarding fun, stick with Cool Boarders 3. Freestyle Boardin' '99 pales upon comparison and should be considered only as a one-night rental.
- ProTip : You can win the championship by using the points you've earned from races on Max Speed and Cornering.