Mayhem 3D Review
3D has begun to make its presence known in the industry with games like Black Ops integrating such capabilities, but Mayhem 3D offers a full 3D experience. The game pieces together parts of precision racers and blends them with intense car-ramming action. Mayhem 3D delivers 20 levels where players can earn points for causing mayhem and stars to unlock levels.
The game includes a pair of retro 3D glasses compatible with every TV, a cost-friendly convenience for those who aren't ready to make the switch to a 3D television (most of us). These glasses help create a 3D experience that is short of impressive, especially if you are prone to headaches. Players have the ability in-game to change the depth of the 3D from 0 to 10, but even at the highest setting, the presentation is nothing spectacular. While the 3D in the game seems a bit disappointing, the comic book style graphics are a change from similar games like Burnout. This black and white scheme brings about a love/hate relationship, as it introduces a unique atmosphere but brings about a real distraction, with colors bleeding into those of your vehicle and surroundings.
While each arena is basically a normal track, Mayhem 3D adds a twist with most running in reverse, creating a significant amount of destruction. These layouts amount to some of the most brilliant track designs available in racing games, but are undermined by a troublesome physics engine. Crashes are unpredictable, with little dings spinning you into the air, while enormous crashes keep you on course. These erratic crashes are curiously lessened when playing online, but since the career mode was given top priority by the developer, it's definitely a problem.
Along with the 3D presentation, Mayhem 3D features a fitting soundtrack. The game's broadcaster demonstrates tremendous announcing skill, but after the third level, you start to hear all the same lines over again. Car sounds are average for a game with a lineup of 120 vehicles ready for destruction, and they all sound similar to one another. Crashes are satisfying in terms of graphics and sounds, obviously showing where the true craftsmanship of the game is.
Accompanying the wide range of 120 race cars, Mayhem 3D offers four different game modes. These modes range from your typical race to a demolition type mode where gamers try to earn the highest number of points to stay alive. Filler events drag down the excitement built upon by the more intense modes (like banger races). These will have players destroying stationary targets, collecting items, or completing another task for up to three stars. All detract from the main point of the game: mayhem and destruction.
Overall, Mayhem 3D lacks depth in many departments, but it delivers an average experience for fans of destruction racing games. Priced at $39.99, Mayhem 3D will give you a few hours of animated gameplay. The 3D feature is interesting at first but quickly wears out its welcome. If you are looking for a so-so destruction game cheaper than the standard $59.99 price point, then give Mayhem 3D a look. If you want a game that impresses on many levels, steer clear.
[Reviewed on Xbox 360]