RTL Biathlon 2009

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a game by 49Games GmbH
Platform: Playstation 2
Editor Rating: 5/10, based on 1 review
User Rating: 7.5/10 - 4 votes
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See also: Winter Sports Games
RTL Biathlon 2009
RTL Biathlon 2009
RTL Biathlon 2009
RTL Biathlon 2009

The winter Olympic Biathlon is a strange mixture of cross-country skiing and rifling shooting, and RTL Biathlon 2009 brings the unusual sport to the hands of gamers in the last installment of the RTL Biathlon series. For fans of Shaun White Snowboarding and SSX, RTL Biathlon 2009 is a snow capped simulator that brings the strange world of Biathlon to life.

Skiing & Shooting

Of course, the main draw to a game like RTL Biathlon is in how it allows players to immerse themselves in the world of professional sports. And while Biathlon might not be the most popular of the winter sports (a category that has lower interest than its summer counterpart), RTL Biathlon does a fantastic job at showing off everything that makes the sport so unique and interesting to watch.

Players can expect a series of Biathlon races on a variety of tracks. In career mode, players have the opportunity to play real life Biathletes such as Alexander Wolf and Michael Roesch, but can also choose to make their own custom character from a small selection of customization presets.

As players progress through the main career mode, they’ll be tasked in entering a series of cups that amp up in difficulty. The Junior Cup is the most simple, and will see players take their first few steps on the snow as they race against their competitors.

A Snowball’s Chance in Helsinki

RTL Biathlon is clearly made for a specific audience in mind. And in tailoring its effort to a niche market, it's clear that the game did not have a massive budget to work with. Wherever you look the lack of real financial means is evident. Whether it’s in the down-right frightening character models with flat, humanoid faces or the janky animations that don’t appear to react to speed or terrain, players won’t be able to miss the game’s many flaws.

The sound design is also poor. Apart from the beginning fanfare and the occasional cheer of onlookers, the game’s sound is sparse, especially during skiing sections. There is very little music, and sound effects feel cheap and lifeless.

Movement on the Mountains

While other snow-based games like Shaun White Snowboarding prioritized controls and movement, the same can’t be said for RTL Biathlon 2009. The cross-country skiing, while serviceable, has the player move via stiff skiing animations that seem to be unaffected by controller input. Instead, the player must focus on on-screen UI feedback that ultimately clutters up the screen and takes away from the spectacle of the sport.

The variety in the shooting portion of the Biathlon event is appreciated, however the controls here are rudimentary at best. Hardly on par with the most satisfying first-person shooters, the gun play in RTL Biathlon 2009 has more in common with shooting arcade games via plastic gun controllers.

To be specific, the recoil after each shot is extreme, meaning after each pull of the trigger the gun shoots off wildly and violently. This doesn’t add any sense of realism. Instead it only helps to give the player a headache.


Unless you’re a die-hard Biathlon fan that is sorely in need of a video game adaptation of the sport, give RTL Biathlon 2009 (and the rest of the series, for that matter) a miss. With its rough presentation and uninspiring gameplay, RTL Biathlon is reserved for a very niche audience that can look past its foibles.


  • Very niche game offering for fans of Biathlon events
  • Features real-life, playable Biathletes
  • Multiple game modes and character creator


  • Commentator voice lines are terrible, repetitive and devoid of context
  • Graphics are fairly poor
  • Animations are stiff and unrealistic

Download RTL Biathlon 2009

Playstation 2

System requirements:

  • PC compatible
  • Operating systems: Windows 10/Windows 8/Windows 7/2000/Vista/WinXP

Snapshots and Media

Playstation 2 Screenshots

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