Friday, August 28, 2009

Trials HD

Developer: RedLynx
Publisher: Microsoft
Release Date: Aug. 12, 2009
System: Xbox 360
ESRB Rating: T
Official Web site

In a nutshell: If real motorcycling is this hard, no wonder there are so many accidents.

0:00 After hearing this one frequently described as the second coming of the NES favorite ExciteBike, I figured $15 wasn't too much to ask.

0:01 "Monday Monday Monday. It's Monday Night Show Tiiiime," says an announcer over the introductory logos. Drum-heavy generic rock over a simple, dirty title screen.

0:02 Controls look simple enough ... gas and break on the shoulder triggers, lean forward and back with the analog stick. Let's go!

0:03 Difficulty choices are Beginner, Easy, Medium, Hard and Extreme. I start with Beginner, even though I assume it will be totally simple and boring. I start the tutorial in the only available bike, a tiny Turtle 80cc. Looks way too small for my large, muscular rider.

0:04 I hold down RT to go full-throttle right out of the gate. There are some small ramps, but it's a relatively flat course. I show off on the last straightaway with some wheelies. After the finish line, my rider crashes into some plywood and big rubber tires. Ouch. Already I'm not a fan of the diagonal camera view, which makes depth perception a bit of a problem.

0:05 The next track is full of distracting explosions to the side of my biker's path. I'm doing fine, until I lean too far forward during a jump and end up riding nearly vertically on my front wheel after the landing. I fall over into the world's gentlest crash. It's almost slow-motion.



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