Monday, March 5, 2012

Played Lately: SSX

  • I returned to SSX the last two evenings to resume my conquest of the nine deadly descents. My first session left me dissatisfied, so I actually waited a couple of days before going back. Although I still find myself frustrated, my problems are starting to fall away.

  • On top of my frustration with the controls, I've found that there are some terrible difficulty spikes. The deadly descent runs are particularly grueling, each requiring multiple attempts to finish. Then there is the ever-so-helpful option to skip a race if you screw up over and over again. They will even give you the XP and credits as if you won, like a backhanded consolation prize. Thanks for reminding me how much I suck, EA.

  • Stepping outside of the World Tour mode taught me something important: I started to notice when various drops fed into the same run. So by the time I was on my fourth race down the mountain, I could anticipate the lower half of each run and I was much more confident in pulling off tricks. Since you jump from peak to peak in the World Tour, you don't get the same opportunity to learn the tracks. I suspect that repetition will be a big help as I progress through the game.

  • Explore mode ended up being a lot more interesting than I expected. All you have to do is choose a peak and run it, either as a race, trick, or survival event. While that seems simple, the mode really allows you to learn a mountain top to bottom. I was able to set three silver medals and one bronze and I look forward to improving on those times.

  • I feel like the game is slowing unfolding in front of me. As long as I stick with it and get past all of the frustrating parts, there is quite a lot to like about SSX.

© 2012 Marty Runyon. All rights reserved.

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