Game Reviews

2XL Supercross

Star onStar onStar onStar halfStar off
2XL Supercross

2XL Supercross is a looker. Everything from its splashy opening sequence to its smooth in-game 3D graphics scream touch me, stroke me, love me - which considering the way I've seen many bikers treating their rides, is entirely appropriate.

At £4.99/$7.99, however, this off-road dash is anything but dirt cheap. At almost every turn 2XL Supercross is keen to prove its worth. Superior handling and gleaming graphics ensure the track experience is second to none, but there's nothing to string each race together.

The lack of a Career mode is a strange decision, especially when you consider just how consummate the rest of of 2XL Supercross is. Played out across 13 tracks, the game offers three modes of play: Practice, Time Trial, and Racing. Competitive races have you speeding against either two or four opponents, the latter of which is reserved only for those playing on a second generation iPod touch.

The tracks themselves are tight affairs, squashed as they are in the centre of the stadium, the lanes weaving in and out of each other like stodgy spaghetti. This means that gentle bends are a rarity, a succession of sharp 90-degree turns putting your driving to the test.

Any crashes are entirely your fault, though, as both of the game's control schemes - accelerometer or dual directional pads - offer spot-on handling. Even better, the controls are fully customisable.

That's not the only area you can tweak to your liking, either. 2XL Supercross lets you flip among four different camera angles that, aside from merely letting you play the game from your preferred view, can actually be the difference between flying off a bend or sliding around it with accuracy.

They're all the kinds of options that anyone who regularly goes for a spin on a home console will be acclimatised to and, in every element but one, 2XL Supercross is a match for those very console cousins it seems keen to ape.

Yet these options are the only thing that tie the game's random races together. There's no points system, awards beyond unlocking the latter levels, or any kind of championship on offer whatsoever. It all feels bizarrely half-hearted.

When you have a game that pushes so many visual boundaries, to leave the races themselves as solitary pursuits is a step backwards. The racing is joyous, but when there's no risk or reward, there's likewise no incentive to break just that little bit later on that final bend or fly over that jump with even more abandon than usual.

2XL Supercross is perfect for showcasing the platform's visual prowess, but remains rather soulless overall. It's a glimpse into off-road bliss that's over no sooner than you've turned the engine over and flung a little mud.

2XL Supercross

2XL Supercross has the fundamentals of a great racer, but mucks up its sweet graphics and controls with a lack of direction