It's always a nice thing when a title bearing the number 2 after the title
itself is actually better than it's predecessor and Amped 2 is certainly the
case in point here. The best realistic snowboarding game on any console so far
has just gotten better folks and I am more than glad to tell you about it in
my own rambling way.
With titles like this there are always
going to be the comparisons to EA's SSX series, which on the other end of the
scope would be my favourite fantasy snowboarding game bar none. Super tricks
and feet unclipped, Tricky goes a long way toward rocking my world when it
comes to this sort of game. That said however, Amped 2 raises the bar in terms
of realism and puts style over frantic substance.
I've got to get one thing out of the way
first before prattling on about graphics and the like; Amped has 300 music
tracks on it for you to thrash about to! I don't think I have ever come across
a game with this many in the one hit, not even Grand Theft Auto Vice City has
this many. Indie artists prevail and I can guarantee that there will be one or
two of these performers that you will try to find more of their stuff after
hearing a track or two from this game. That said, you can still use the custom
soundtrack feature to pump your own tracks if 300 tunes ain't enough for your
The main star of this show aside from the
boarders themselves would of course have to be the mountain that they are
traversing. This time round, the mountains are open and sweeping with
absolutely dynamic draw distances truly making you feel a part of something
huge. It seems that despite how good the first Amped was, that it's been given
an overhaul for one of the most polished snowboarding games I've seen.
A new mode has been given to this title and
it's one that I thought was great as I would have to be almost the world's
biggest Tony Hawk fan, and that's the snowskating mode where the board isn't
clipped to your boots as it would be in conventional snowboarding. Don't get
me wrong, the game hasn't gone all SSX on us, you are still bound by physics
and gravity which means that if the board goes into the air, you need to grab
it or lose it, which of course is in line with real life as well. I loved the
fact that you could then perform kick tricks onto other surfaces to rail them.
Player detail and environments are so crisp
and clear that you can almost feel the steam rising from your breath when you
are playing. Animations for the most part are very smooth and fluid, however
there is the odd occasion, like when you take a tumble that the animation
seems to skip a frame or two. It's nothing major and barely noticeable.