Gamestyle Archive intro: we’re still in 2001, September to be precise. It’s hard to believe that’s 13 years ago now. Dan gives us his verdict on the BMX craze with MX2002.
When I was given the duty of reviewing MX2002 featuring Ricky Carmichael, the first thing that popped into my mind was who? I like most of the populous of Grande Britagne know very little about these; sports. All I really know is that it involves persons of ages anything between 18 and 40, whose minds didn’t really develop much after puberty, throwing themselves off or up large objects, on some sort of primitive wheeled device. But it’s my duty to see just how extreme MX2002 really is.
What I consider extreme is things like tea bagging, felching, and chilli dogs. Its much like Tony Hawk’s Skateboarding, in that it includes a career mode, where you are given the opportunity to make a character and try to rise him through the ranks, to ride faster more powerful bikes, and to challenge this Ricky Carmichael himself. This is like many of the other extreme sports games out there in that pulling off fancy stunts whilst racing your hardest wins you points and the hearts of the crowds. But a downfall of this is that it often results in you, landing awkwardly, thus bruising your crotch on the seat at the finish line trying to pull off a Hart breaker with a superman Indian air, leaving you clambering back on your bike being overtaken by everyone else in the race. It starts off relatively straight forward, with an arcadey feel to the controls, i.e. hold accelerate and rag it around the corners at full pelt. But as you progress you will discover that you will need a lot more than the analogue stick and the accelerate button.
The tutorials within the game offer all the hints and tips you will need to have any chance later on. The latter races will require you to power up your jumps to go further, as well as raising and lowering the front of the bike to tackle the various series of bumps more efficiently, and can become very irritating when you get this all wrong. The races include the usual straight cross country races, and the crazy, jump 250 buses in a row events. There’s various bike manufacturers available to choose from, including the likes of Suzuki and Kawasaki. And then there’s the brand name clothing and protection, Oakley and Fox, to name a couple. I myself spent a long while creating a perfectly colour coordinated motocross representation of me, only to see him eat a shed load of dirt on most of the jumps. Good thing I had a helmet to protect my beautiful face.
The stunt modes are entertaining. Jumping lots of buses, trying to pull off triple somersaults, and cringing as you look at your character bend in ways that any medical practitioner would tell you to avoid trying. There’s a selection of 32 stunts to try and pull off. There’s the supermen, no handers, tail whips, and many many more, and are surprisingly easy to perform, by simply holding the L2 or R2 button and pressing combinations of the other buttons, will make Ricky and his chums flip and twist in all manner of ways. The graphics aren’t super duper, the tracks could be considered somewhat unimaginative, but are based on real race tracks, and if you don’t believe me, check out channel 5 at about half four in the morning. On the plus side, there’s no fogging and you can see well ahead on the track.
The bikes sound pretty close to the real thing, but can get annoying after a long session, the same whiney motor noise will keep everyone in the household awake until you decide to call it quits. The music within the game is as you’d expect, with the guitar strangling punk/rock music that the youths of today listen to. Singing, or shall I say, screaming about irrelevant things like getting cider from a lemon, and talking about his brand new car, which he thinks is a Jaguar. It’s definitely more of a 1 player game. The 2 player mode is a tad boring and access to some of the areas is prohibited.
The graphical detail is reduced, and there isn’t really a lot to do in it, except race, or out perform one another. Of course there’s the usual immature option of chasing each other around trying to knock your mate off his bike. Most definitely one for the solo gamer, unless you have one of those weird mates who prefer to watch, freaks! It won’t take too long to finish career mode either, a week of a couple hours a day, and you will be crowned champ, leaving it to gather dust on top of your TV, you might come back to it to try and pull off the odd stunt, but other than that, I think its one of those games you’ll soon forget you ever owned. It’s a good one for the motocross fans out there, and I did quite enjoy it, while it lasted.
Gamestyle Score: 6/10