PS2 REVIEW: ATV OFFROAD FURY

ATV Offroad Fury was developed by Rainbow, who are also responsible for the excellent Motocross Madness games available for the PC. If you've ever laid your hands on MM1 or MM2, you know that this development team knows their shit. And although they've traded the dirtbikes in for Quads, the feeling of the Motocross Madness games is still there, which in short, means that this game is a quality title. And even more so than that, this means that it's a quality title for the PS2!

The game consists of 4 modes: The MAXXIS Nationals (which we think is just a small disguised tribute to us...), Stadium mode, Enduro and Freestyle. The MAXXIS Nationals provides perhaps the most diverse tracks as it offers races on courses all over the world. You'll compete on grass, sand, snow, mud etc, however the tracks will be well defined. Enduro & Freestyle Mode take place in true offroad unchartered racing territory. The emphasis is on tricks and points in Freestyle while Enduro is more true racing with checkpoints and laps (although you can make your own path).

"As far as racing titles go, ATV Offroad Fury is a great offering, even if you don't particularly care for quads."

The control is definitely tuned more for arcade play than a true physics simulation of the sport. Where real Quads tend to be sluggish and heavy, these virtual machines handle relatively well and even get some great air. In fact, you might say they get a bit too much air to be realistic, but what the hell, it's a game right? I mean, you really don't believe you are actually doing any of this stuff do you? The fact that you have a bag of doritos in your lap and your feet on an ottoman must be hindering the fantasy a little bit right? The tricks are pretty easy to pull off for the most part, and actually seem kind of tacked on. I didn't really get into the stunt aspect of the game so much. But I almost never do unless it's a trick based game like Tony Hawk. When I race, I want to race.

Graphically the game is really nice. Excellent terrain and large expansive levels, with well animated vehicles and riders. The frame rate is really solid, until you get into the two player mode; then the pop up and the frame rate hits start showing up, which is really disappointing on the PS2. I thought we'd have seen the end of this by now.

Musically the game flip flops between techno-beat, alternative and punk, which I guess is trying to appease all worlds. It didn't bother me either way, but I could see the punkers bawking at the techno stuff and the rockers hating the punk stuff etc. But if you are one of those who tends to love SoundGarden, Apollo Four Forty, Seven Dust, CIRRUS and Alice in Chains...then you just wound up with a cool new soundtrack. Uh, right.

My biggest problem with the game is the unholy AI at which your opponents operate. These guys are the Professors to your Gilligan so to speak. Expect to lose a lot to these unrelenting bastards who obviously practice their asses off every spare moment when the game isn't in the PS2. I fucking hate when the little people in the game do that!! It's so unfair! So, you might tend to get a little discouraged at first, but the first time Gilligan makes it across the finish line, you'll be ecstatic!

As far as racing titles go, ATV Offroad Fury is a great offering, even if you don't particularly care for quads. The racing is great, the control and graphics are tight and what the hell, it's another good title for the PS2. Nothing wrong with that. Buy it.

System: PS2
Dev: Rainbow Studios
Pub: Sony
Released: Feb 2001
Players: 1- 2
Review by Shelby
RATING (OUT OF 5)
OVERALL
3.5
GRAPHICS
4.0
CONTROL
3.0
MUSIC/FX
3.5
VALUE
2.0