|System: PS2, DS, X360, PS3, PC, Wii||Review Rating Legend|
|Dev: Ubisoft Montreal||1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid||4.0 - 4.4 = Great|
|Pub: Ubisoft||2.0 - 2.4 = Poor||4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy|
|Release: Nov. 16, 2008||2.5 - 2.9 = Average||5.0 = The Best|
|Players: 1-2||3.0 - 3.4 = Fair|
|ESRB Rating: Everyone 10+||3.5 - 3.9 = Good|
While it is obvious developers are concentrating on using the entire play area, roaming around trying to find each coin can become tedious and unentertaining. It is fitting that many of the cutscenes starring Shaun tend to be equally as dull, as the storyline based around you having to complete various objectives is loosely pieced together. The story mode seems somewhat irrelevant in the game, other than the need to star Shaun White as the games poster boy, and many people will find free-roaming more enjoyable than playing through the solo campaign. Multi-player is also one of the games strongest suits, as casually boarding through such large areas with a buddy prove to be the most fun you will have with SWS.
The goal of Shaun White Snowboarding is undoubtedly to offer a more realistic, less arcade style of gameplay. All of your jump, spin, grab, and carve moves are easy to grasp and landing them is made easier, even if you return to the snowy surface a tad awkwardly. Moves may also be more exaggerated than what a professional could actually pull off, though Shaun White Snowboarding never turns into an Amped or Tony Hawk style of arcade. The result is a much slower game, and the speed at which you travel down hills tends to be a lot duller than those familiar with playing less realistic boarding titles. Laugh-out-loud wipeout animations are also non-existent in Shaun White Snowboarding, popularized by Tony Hawk. The transition of such extreme sports games to a more family-friendly title such as this can actually be hard to get used to, and may cause some gamers to bore of Shaun White Snowboarding quickly. It rapidly becomes apparent that this game is better suited for children and gamers less experienced than you probably are.
A cool soundtrack featuring a list of acts as diverse as Anti-Flag, Run DMC, and Jefferson Airplane is mixed well with the ambience of shushing down mountains for an impressive aural experience. Visually, Shaun White Snowboarding tends to look unpolished. There are moments of shaky player movements and shuddering at certain times, and the game utilizes unappealing blurring techniques when reaching a high rate of speed. This is actually when the game looks and feels its worse, as the visuals of bombing down a hill is not quite met in the sensation of this very slow-moving game.
In all, the games accessibility for more casual gamers may bore some fans of other snowboarding titles. Anyone used to the SSX or Amped styles of snowboarding may grow tired of Shaun White Snowboarding and its simplistic controls and lack of speed. With its E 10+ rating and overall Wii-styled imagery, those who dont enjoy more casual party game styles will probably bore with this easily.
CCC Freelance Writer