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Initiated in the late 1980s and early '90s, the high-risk sport of boardercross is now officially recognized by Electronic Arts: SSX involves high-speed snowboarding action spanning eight snowed-over motocross tracks. Tracks range from the obstacle-ridden Tokyo Megaplex to the high cliffs of Mesablanca, each having dangerous turns, big-air ramps, and tunnels.
While the tracks are designed with an arcade-like mindset, Electronic Arts wanted to provide gamers a plausible physics engine that emulated the sport. Every track's layout will test your snowboarding skills with breakneck speeds on severe downward slopes! Although you're to finish each course before your opponents, what's wrong with a little showboating? A wealth of executable maneuvers are available including aerial tricks, 360-degree spins, and back flips!
A total of eight unique characters are included, each differing in style, attitude, and skills. Getting by on her good looks, Elisa is a shrewd snowboarder with a high-risk mentality; Hiro will never leave the house without the latest snowboarding technology; Kaori is carefree, full of energy, and friendly to whomever she meets; and Jurgen is best described as a juggernaut.
SSX features a variety of gameplay options including the World Circuit, Training, and Show Off modes. Before even considering signing up for the Professional World Championship Invitational Event, players can learn the ropes by completing the Training course. This mode covers the basics such as how to perform certain tricks and how to control the snowboarder.
The World Circuit is an event-based competition spanning five fields with 32 snowboarders vying for glory. Your objective is to score as high a rating as possible throughout the events; whoever holds the highest overall ranking at the end of the day wins! Everyone else can lower his or her head in shame and try again next year.
Show Off mode has you performing as many stunts as you can while trying to finish the race within the time limit. Located throughout the tracks are snowflakes that act as multipliers. Simply touch a snowflake while performing a stunt to earn as much as five times the trick's point value. ~ Matthew House, All Game Guide