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SX Superbike Review - PS2

55%
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Sick of your ugly girlfriend? Then upgrade on SX Superbike!

Acclaim have fallen on hard times recently. Whether it's been criticism from dubious advertising campagins in Europe to the OFLC stripping the main selling point of BMX XXX or it's extremely low share price life hasn't been grand. Their latest motorbike racer, SX Superbike is being developed by Climax, responsible for the critically acclaimed (bad pun) Moto GP series on the Xbox. Will SX Superbike blow past the competition or will it end up grunting as little power as a Peewee 50?

Gameplay

SX Superbike feel like it's out of some gas. Generally there is nothing that adds to the innovation of the genre apart from the 'upgraded' girlfriend in the career mode. How this works is in career mode when you start off, the interface shows your living quarters which look like a derelict bunker and that's being polite. A picture of a rather large ugly girl with warts to boot is in a photo frame. Progress to more prestige and you dump this 'fat mole' where she burrs up on your message machine and 'upgrade' to better looking women. If only this were the case with me in real life! The answering machine consists of amusing messages which are updated and change whether you win or lose a race. If you lose then your mum or sponsors will comment on your last race of if you win lots of races, you get more jealous messages from your ex girlfriend. I know all bout those....

Handling wise, Sx has unresponsive controls, you'd swear the bike was bought from a dodgy 2nd hand car/bike dealer (aren't they all dodgy though?). Moving and accelerating isn't too bad but when performing jumps using the shoulder buttons, it's an effort just to make a somewhat fancy jump. When this happens it makes you want to rev up MX Superfly quickly and bust some moves. The pre load meter works well where you press one of the shoulder buttons and hold it down. If the the timing is right you'll soar high into the air ala Evil Kneivel. However, with the trick system may as well being non existent, the races become dull and quite boring.There are stunt modes etc where you are rewarding for doing stunts. While this initially sounds like a nice divergence, the unresponsive controls wreck the potential fun.

One of the main problems in SX Superbike is the stupid green arrow meter at the top of the screen which is as helpful as an insurance call centre. At times there is no map to help as in aid and sometimes there are numerous ways you could go which the arrow falls under. Yet the only way to counter this is trial and error and if you go the wrong way, trying to catch up is more impossible than John Howard assisting university students.

Graphics

SX Superbike is generally quite bland and uninspiring. It's only saving grace are some of the sweet lighting effects evident particularly with the sun rays and the water rippling. For the most part ... (continued next page)