Amped 3 Xbox 360 Review

May 30, 2010 by  
Filed under Reviews & Features, Xbox 360, Xbox

The previous Amped games on the Xbox were predominantly steered towards a more simulation approach, that’s why we were surprised to find such an intuitive game with Amped 3. Does it steal SSX’s crown though?

In fact the word “surprising” sums up the game in its entirety, there’s a zany story wrapped around proceedings for instance, and snowboarding seriousness soon becomes a thing of the past. To say that the plot is weird is a bit of an understatement, a more appropriate word would definitely be “madcap” and to call it “out of this world” would also be fitting. In spite of its intentions, the games “humour” failed to amuse us as we just found it off the-rails stupid instead!

Oddly enough, the game begins with you riding down a hill on a snowboard and wearing a pink rabbit outfit! It’s only after this sequence that you are able to choose your characters gender and then customise him or her the way you see fit. Then it’s onwards to conquer the seven real life mountains by proving your dominance on the white powder of course.

Snowboards are king here, but that’s not to say that Amped 3 is exclusively about snowboarding. Snowmobiles and sleds also make an appearance, and whether it’s for certain missions or that you decide to hop on one to travel to a particular task, they are good fun to use whatever you may be doing. The snowmobile is unquestionably the best form of travel, as it’s nippy and also allows you to climb the hills that any other vehicle would struggle with. To tell you that hand gliding shows up might give you a rough idea of how much the game throws you off the snowboarding scent on occasion.

Make no mistake about it though, Amped 3 is still a snowboarding game, and it focuses on this “cool” ability with the mindset that anyone can pick it up and play it with little trouble, regardless of their gaming skills. Soaring into the sky and grabbing your board is done with such a might of ease, that we found falling off a pretty difficult predicament to find ourselves in. Combo moves remain similar in vein to the Tony Hawk’s series thanks to a balance meter, and it’s really this part of the game, which presents some sort of sense of skill to the player involved.

The games structure has you participating in different events such as trick and collection challenges, pleasing the media, and even amusingly throwing yourself out of a sled to cause as much damage to your character as you possibly can, and more. There’s even some multi-player missions, although sadly this is as far away as the game strays from its single player mode, with nothing else provided for those who like playing in numbers. These challenges win you respect, and earning enough will unlock the next story mission in the line. The story missions themselves are meanwhile pleasingly varied, and much better then the daft storyline itself.

The game has plenty of reason to return to it, even after completion of the story mode. It will be doubtful that you would have grabbed all the gold medals on your first journey through, unless you are a perfectionist looking for instant perfection. Then of course there’s the usual achievements to accomplish, which we have always welcomed on the brand spanking new 360, as well as leader boards for those with Xbox Live accounts.

So is Amped 3 as good as SSX then? To put it simply we like each as much as the other, both offer a snowfall amount of fun and boast features that set them apart from the other. As Amped 3 is the only snowboard game on the 360, it’s therefore king of the mountain at this early stage of the console, although the next generation version of SSX may have something to say about that!