|System: PS3, X360, PC||Review Rating Legend|
|Dev: Black Rock Studios||1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid||4.0 - 4.4 = Great|
|Pub: Disney Interactive Studios||2.0 - 2.4 = Poor||4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy|
|Release: Sept. 16, 2008||2.5 - 2.9 = Average||5.0 = The Best|
|Players: 1-16||3.0 - 3.4 = Fair|
|ESRB Rating: Everyone||3.5 - 3.9 = Good|
Possibly, what I love most about Pure is the fact that it never loses sight of what makes it fun. Too many games take a tried-and-true mechanic and then arrogantly try and fix it. The development team acknowledged the obvious fun in going fast, performing tricks, and getting air. Thats what they based the game around, and, as a result, each race is just plain fun. There are no obstacles to overcome with controls or interface. You just play and enjoy yourself.
Sadly, this focus on speed and simplicity can also be a problem for the game; the fact of the matter is theres just not a whole lot of meat to this game. Its great while it lasts, but its quite short. Admittedly, there is plenty of opportunity for replay value thanks to the high-quality courses and wide variety of new tricks to discover. But even with such in-depth customization features as the ATV builder, Pure can get a bit stale sooner than youd like.
In many ways, Pure is in a conundrum of sorts. It homes in on whats fun but, in so doing, cuts out a lot of content that would in other racing games provide a lot more depth to the title. Its awesome to be able to just pick-up-and-play this game, but at the same time there are no racing maneuvers to master, and Pure is not a particularly difficult game. That said, its really fun while it lasts and the superb 16-player online mode certainly extends the life of the game. Theres even an extra play mode online that lets you play to your strength (finishing first, getting the highest trick score, etc.) and theyve carried over the single-player modes. A local multiplayer option would undeniably have been nice, but the online component is solid, nonetheless.
Theres a lot to love about Pure, but at the same time it can be hard to shake the feeling that somethings missing. At its best, Pure is a game that puts you in the middle of the action and exhilarates you with fantastic racing fun. But its not going to last you particularly long even with the multiplayer aspect, and I cant help but wish that Pure werent a $60 game. There are other, deeper, and ultimately more satisfying racing games out there. But for a pure, pick-up-and-play sense of speed and fun, Pure is hard to beat.
CCC Freelance Writer