Review by Aristotle
"Best Launch Game I've Seen In A While!"
SSX was the first launch game for PS2. It was the “cream of the crop”, so to speak, of the PS2 launch lineup. Many people were in awe over it, and for good reason: SSX was and still is an excellent PlayStation 2 game. Some think it is a Coolboarders rip-off. This is like saying Grind Sessions is a Tony Hawk rip-off; it just doesn’t work. SSX is one in a million.
I’d say the graphics are very, very good for a launch game. Not using even 30% of the PS2’s full power, the graphics are still sharp, crisp, clear, colorful, and very detailed. The courses are just beautiful, and huge at that. The character models are great, and it shows through the characters looking good. There is also no slowdown. Period. Not for me, at least. The few FMV’s in the game are also in-game, and not real-life movie-style looking.
The audio of most any video game nowadays that has at least five hours put into sounds great. SSX is no exception. Everything, from the music to sound effects, sound near perfect. The board sliding down the hill, the crowd cheering, the sound of a snowboard braking in the snow, the sound of you grunting when you bail..... excellent. Only one thing could make the sound of SSX better: surround sound speakers :)
The controls are quite different from Coolboarders, and that is what I like about the game (SSX). Instead of using X, circle, square, and triangle to do tricks, the game utilizes the four shoulder buttons (L1, L2, R1, and R2) to do tricks. You can also press combinations of them, such as R1 and L2 for something. All four held down together executes an Experimental Air. Other than that, the game also takes advantage of the Dual Shock 2’s full analog function. The harder you press X, the lower you crouch, and thusly the higher you jump. The controls are very responsive, the kind that you can’t blame if you suck :Þ
The gameplay mode is fun for the first couple of days, but gets old, repetitive, and boring quickly. Actually, that just applies to the Career mode, for lack of a better term. What’s really fun is the free skate mode, where you can just go mess around the level. THAT is fun, and is what kept me hooked on the first level for a week. Anyway, you’re a pro snowboarder. You compete against some other pros (I think eight including you) and go for the gold. This is much, much harder than Coolboarders because the levels in SSX are about quintuple the size of the longest course in Coolboarders 2001. That is long. And that is just the first level; they gradually become longer as the game progresses. This is good and bad; good, because if you like the level you get a lot of it. Bad because my best run down the first level took about 7 minutes. That was using shortcuts. Now you know why I’ve been playing the same level for a week :)
Replay Value: 10+/10
If you like the game, you’ll get almost an infinite amount of replay value out of it. I’ve had SSX for about three months as of tomorrow, and have not stopped lovin’ it yet, even with GTA3 and THPS3. There is just so much to do, and so much to see, and so many tricks, it’s pretty much impossible for SSX to lose its luster. Thank you.
Replay Value: 10+/10
Total Overall Average: 9.2/10
Total Overall GameFAQs Score: 9/10
Reviewer's Rating: 4.5 - Outstanding
Originally Posted: 12/12/01, Updated 12/12/01
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