The phrase “where the rubber
meets the road” is not always applicable in the world of motor-driven games.
Sometimes there is no road, and sometimes if the stunt goes awry
it isn’t rubber that’s meeting the road and those aren’t tire marks
Midway Sports Asylum’s pending
release of Freestyle Metal X, is a high-flying, stunt-based motocross game
that will not only have players trying to leap buildings with aerial antics
racking up big points, but also confronting farm livestock and running
down pedestrians to unlock tricks and stunts.
See granny hobbling across
the yard. Plow into her on your motorcycle and you will unlock a stunt
to try when you launch off the ramp over the farmhouse. And granny may
be hobbling now, but she can get rather spry in a hurry when you give chase
on your bike.
GameZone.com was given the
opportunity to strap on a helmet in the beta for the PlayStation2 and rather
than finding a game full of horrific violence, and blood patches across
the pavement, found a program that has attitude and fun.
The game features 16 riders
including nine of the sports top riders like Clifford “The Flyin’ Hawaiian”
Adoptante, Ronnie Faisst, “Mad” Mike Jones, Jeff Tilton and Nate Adams.
You can unlock the riders after completing levels and attaining the high
score. There are eight levels with up to four competitions per level (Big
Air, Freestyle, Race and Hill Climb). There are side events and for the
first time in a sports game, once you unlock an area, it links with another,
which enables seamless driving from one area to the other.
And the game’s soundtrack
is worthy in its own right. This is metal rock and the game features the
music of Motley Crue, Megadeth, Motorhead, Judas Priest, and Twisted Sister,
among others. Each rider has his or her share of attitude and much of that
is reflected by the vocal personification of each.
The control elements on this
game have been kept quite simple and players should take little time in
growing accustomed to flying over a ramp, hitting the trick button and
using the thumbpad in concert for a superman of back flip, or even tromping
on the brake and using the thumbpad for a stoppie
The graphical elements are
very well done. The environments are lush, diverse and interactive to some
extent. Bust up a porch or drive through a pasture fence and the damage
The animation is also solid.
If a rag crashes, the body flops through the air or along the ground like
a broken rag doll. Ouch! The game does contain blood effects and too many
crashes equal a trip to the hospital and game over.
Freestyle Metal X does contain
some elements that may make parents cringe, but they are all in fun and
mostly keep in the same vein as the zany, over-the-top style of other Midway
sports games. The beta was far from complete, but from what there was,
this looks to be a well-designed, graphically exciting foray into the world