|System: PS2, PSP||Review Rating Legend|
|Dev: Virtuos [sic]||1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid||4.0 - 4.4 = Great|
|Pub: SONY||2.0 - 2.4 = Poor||4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy|
|Release: Oct. 20, 2009||2.5 - 2.9 = Average||5.0 = The Best|
|Players: 1||3.0 - 3.4 = Fair|
|ESRB Rating: Teen||3.5 - 3.9 = Good|
When this happens, it becomes rather clear why racing in this game feels so much slower than past iterations. All the objects in the game are rendered quite well, but that comes at the price of speed, as the processor is unable to render those graphics very quickly if you're moving too fast. It's a bit of a trade-off, and if nice-looking graphics are more important to you than the speed of play, then you'll have no problems with this. However, many racers will come away wishing that the gameplay had taken precedence over the visuals.
There is no such trade-off in the audio department, though. Arctic Edge is great across the board featuring foremost an expansive, up-tempo track list full of big name bands like the Queens of the Stone Age and The White Stripes. Ever since Burnout 3 showed the gaming world how effective an up-tempo soundtrack can be, this feature has been a must for any arcade racer worth its salt, and Arctic Edge really delivers the goods here. Sound effects in this game are also particularly well executed. In a lot of ways, the audio has a big responsibility in this game due to the fact it now has to make up for a lot of the shortcomings of the PS2's visuals. Thankfully, Arctic Edge has a very good audio system that adds weight to crashes and really makes you feel like you're pushing the petal to the metal during boosts even though, as was discussed earlier, you're not actually going that fast. Which makes it all the more impressive.
This is a racer for PS2 fans who haven't yet made the jump into the current generation of consoles, not for MotorStorm fans looking for their next fix. The original MotorStorm and the follow-up, Pacific Rift, are both better games than this, and those who are looking to replicate those experiences will come away disappointed. However, this is still a pretty good, late-life PS2 racing game, and if you're looking to squeeze a few extra drops of life out of your PS2, then this is a competent racer for a good price.
CCC Freelance Writer