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SX Superstar

Score: 50%
ESRB: Everyone
Publisher: Acclaim
Developer: Climax Group
Media: CD/1
Players: 1 - 2
Genre: Racing

Graphics & Sound:

The graphics in SX Superstar appear to have taken a step back in the evolutionary process. Rider movements are jerky, the detail of the tracks is atrocious, and air-stunts look like someone doing the robot on the back of a bicycle. But at least the water 'splashing' effects on the screen look nice.

If the graphics aren't enough to turn you away from this game, the audio experience will do a fine job of it. Your speakers will be filled with ordinary, bland, and generally redundant sound effects. Accompanying this poor delivery will be tons of crap pop music, the type you see Goth high schoolers banging their heads to. Unfortunately, the sound is far worse than that image.


Gameplay:

SX Superstar is full of high flying jumps, insane stunts, fast dirt bikes, tracks from around the world, and hot chicks. How could this winning combination go wrong? You can either play the game and find out, or save yourself the torture and listen to what I have to say.

First off, there is little to do in this game. A quick and dirty Arcade mode is offered, which allows you to pick one of many international pro riders and race on any track offered. Tracks come in a few different flavors, including a regular race-to-the-end style track, a stunt track, and another race-to-the-end track that has been disguised with disorienting checkpoint placements.

A more in depth, Championship mode is also offered, where you get to take a new racer and compete in different challenges for fortune and fame. You actually start out in a shoddy apartment in the wrong side of town with the trashiest girlfriend around, a superficial setting which will double as your home in the game. Your fax and phone will have messages from your agent and love interests in an attempt to add humor to a not-so-funny game.

Doing well in venues will get you money and a little attention, possibly resulting in sponsorship. The more money you get, the better bike you can purchase. The better bike you've got, the better you can do in races. And so on. This deathly boring cycle is alleviated only by the acquisition of newer and hotter girlfriends. Ogling over new babes also becomes tiring after about the second or third one (experiences may differ), leaving you with a sense of emptiness and shame at the end of it all.


Difficulty:

The hardest part of SX Superstar will be forcing yourself to play it. If you're strong willed enough to make it that far, the next challenge will be trying to do stunts. Trying to pull off a stunt in the air with the analog stick makes the whole procedure a matter of guess work. The controls here are not all that responsive, and if you're lucky enough to execute the stunt you were shooting for, you'll probably find yourself hurtling face first towards the ground.

Game Mechanics:

Winning each race is a matter of either coming in first or attaining the highest score. To accomplish this, you'll have to perform stunts. This is done by pulling off a combination of button presses while in the air. Stunts not only get you points, but nitro boost as well, which helps with speed in tight situations. Does this all sound familiar? It should, because it's been done to death.

This wouldn't be such a big deal if it was done well. There is no shortage of games to find one that uses this system to its advantage, but this simple fact was wasted on the developers. The controls are stiff and unresponsive, leaving you with the feeling that this game is still a prototype. This, accompanied by poor graphics and all too linear tracks (sans any shortcuts at all) land SX Superstar at the bottom of the barrel.


-Snow Chainz, GameVortex Communications
AKA Andrew Horwitz

Microsoft Xbox Shadoan Microsoft Xbox Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines

 
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