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Platform: PlayStation 3|Change
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on March 10, 2012
This is a fun game as far as a pure snowboarding, single-player experience is concerned, but unfortunately there are a number of things that are lacking in this title that leave the game falling short of my expectations. If you have an affinity for the previous SSX releases you may be disapppointed as a lot of what made the previous releases great is absent here. Also, if you are looking for a solid multiplayer experience you may want to look elsewhere.

EA has taken a more serious approach to this game. Originally the game was going to be called SSX Deadly Decents, and after negative consumer feedback with regards to the new serious direction taken in the revamped IP they decided to remove Deadly Decents from the title and just call it SSX. However, it doesn't appear that they made any attempt to alter the original game they programmed based on this consumer feedback. It is a shame because I feel like EA completely ignored the feedback from their fan base and said we are giving you the game we made whether you like it or not. So the game ends up feeling less like an SSX game and more like a survival snowboarding game. That aside, if you are new to the franchise you may not have the nostalgia associated with previous iterations of the game and find the snowboarding gameplay fun in its own right. They have tried to add a little bit of a story to the game through some comic book pages in between mountains, but it is superficial at best.

The basic premise of the game is that you are traveling around the globe to recruit members to your SSX team. Each member is specialized to handle one of the unique challenges each of the 9 mountain ranges presents. Each mountain range starts with you competing in a few race and tricky events and finishes with you taking on a deadly descent. You can think of each mountain range having one peak that is a boss battle - the deadly descent survival final stage. So for one mountain range the deadly descent may be darkness, another avalanches, etc., with specialized gear being required to handle each unique challenge presented. These mountain boss battles or survival runs include whiteouts (use special goggles for terrain mapping), darkness (headlamp), drop offs (requires a wingsuit to glide over crevices), ice (ice picks to improve turning ability), extreme cold (solar panel for heat), thin air (oxygen tank), rocks (armor), avalanches, and trees.

Some of the game highlights and drawbacks are outlined below:

PROS:
-The controls are tight making it easy to carve up the mountain and perform stunts.
-Athough pretty limited, the soundtrack is decent. I do wish there was a little more variety provided in the music included.
-The landscapes are large and beautiful with some pretty long runs down the mountain.
-There are a number of game modes (racing, trick events, survival events) and a larger number of locations/trails to decend than I expected.
-The ability to purchase a number of upgrades to each snowboarder is a plus.
-Several welcome nuances have been added to the gameplay on the various mountains that require specialized gear to survive descents like headlamps, wing suits, armor, ice picks, and solar panels. These subtle changes to gameplay help keep the game interesting.
-A GEOTAG system has been added that basically allows you and other players to hide markers on the various slopes. The player who dropped the GEOTAG collects money at a certain rate until the marker is discovered and other players that find the marker get money for locating the marker. It can be fun trying to find the perfect spot to hide a marker and trying to figure out how to reach those hard to reach GEOTAGS you see glimmering in the distance.
-I do think the survival aspects added to the game are a welcome addition, but I wish more emphasis was placed on the SSX brand and less on the deadly descent aspects.

CONS:
-The over the top personalities of the characters developed in earlier iterations of this game are non-existent so you really don't develop an attachment to any of the characters. Also, even though you can change the color of of your character's snowsuit, there doesn't appear to be any unique alternative character models like in previous SSX games. The base character models have changed for some of the characters making them not really feel like the same character you use to know.
-The lack of real live head to head competition really hurts the game. Beating the ghost of a friend just isn't the same as racing or tricking right next to them. Although the GEOTAG system is a fun little add-on, multiplayer feels very underdeveloped and tacked on.
-Although there are unique aspects to the mountains in terms of terrain (ice versus rock versus forrest), the differences are subtle. There was a real distinction in various locations in the previous SSX games that is lacking here.

In the past few days a problem has risen in my ability to connect to Ridernet ( the online aspect of the game). This is an issue other gamers are also having. While it isn't affecting every user, it is affecting both 360 and PS3 versions of the game. I have contacted EA about the problem, but they have yet to get back to me. Given this latest turn of events I cannot recommend that anyone buy this game until the issue is resolved. Also, given the lackluster multiplayer I would also wait until the price drops before picking this title up. I was enjoying the game for what it was worth up to the point where my technical issue developed but I admit that I am left partially disappointed by the neutering of the personality associated with SSX tricky.

EDIT:

Since I wrote my review I did get a fix from EA on the Ridernet issue. I am providing the solution below for anyone playing it on the PS3 that is experiencing this problem (although I did not get credit for GEOTAGS still left in the game world, it does appear to work)

"Thank you for contacting Electronic Arts.
Firstly, I apologize for the issue caused to you while connecting to rider-net,therefore I request you to follow these step to make issue fix:

1. Start the game up as usual WITHOUT being signed into PSN.
2. Once at the main screen when you have World Tour/Explore/Global Events, go to Global Events and it'll prompt you
to sign into PSN.
3. Sign into PSN, and it'll likely not connect to RiderNet still.
4. Press PS button and SIGN OUT of PSN. Press PS button again to go back to game.
5. The game will come up with an error saying you were disconnected from the servers. Hit Cancel
6. Press PS button again and SIGN IN to PSN.
7. Now go to Global Events, and do the "sync" thing when you see it at the top left with "select".
8. You're now connected despite seeing the icon in the bottom right saying "Connecting to RiderNet and it will
connect for you.
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on February 29, 2012
When the new SSX was announced, I got giddy at the though and jumped up and down. Some of my friends didn't understand why I was so excited and I had to explain to them the amazingness of this series. Now that I have it, I have some mixed feelings, but I feel it's an overall good entry in the series.

A brief history: SSX has evolved continuously over the years. While some feel the games weren't different enough, I think it's one of the few series that varied greatly over it's iterations. The only SSX to not add or change much was SSX On Tour. Thankfully that is not the case with the new SSX. Fun fact: when EA got rid of EA Sport Big, they decided to start making EA Sports Freestyle, a more casual focused company, and the head of that sub company specifically said they would not be making a new SSX. Thank goodness that didn't stay true!

What's new: a rail riding button, extra gear required for certain courses which changes gameplay and adds additional concerns to keep track of, a whole new button configuration option (which is the default), rewind, no punching, no grabs (where you grab an edge and stay), no reset button, no halfpipe, and no freeride mode. Accidentally going 'off course' has been replaced by chasms of death that you have to 'rewind' out of or die. Also, new to the game, is death. snowflake multipliers have been replaced by geotags and snowflakes that give either experience points or money. The game also feels incredibly fast. In a developer interview, he said outside SSX, the biggest influence was Burnout Paradise. It shows. The new grind button is almost optional, since you can still grind without it, but it's harder. You can no longer grind if you hit the rail at an odd angle, which I found a little less fun.

Game modes: The game has 3 modes: World Tour (story), Explore (traditional SSX Medal score mode), and Global Events (psedo-multiplayer).

In Would Tour mode you open up playable characters. When you beat events, it doesn't matter what place you are as long as you aren't last. On feature that's interesting is if you keep failing an event, it will offer to simply pass it for you. I expected this would not give me my completion check, but there are no signs that I didn't beat that stage. If you wanted to go back and try it later, you'll have to remember what stage it was on your own. It also gives you any money and experience you would have received. This mode is mostly there to open up characters and reveal the 'story'. Each character has a motion comic video that plays to introduce you to them. Unfortunately, one of the biggest problems with this games vs the old games is that it lacks character. The characters are very vague, lacking the bite they used to have. As much as I love the old SSX characters, they might have well as used 'Male Racer A' or some generic build-your-own character. You'd think this mode would be all about building more out of those characters, but it just falls flat. As such, this mode is just there to slowly introduce you to elements of gameplay, mostly the new gear. This could easily have been done in a single level of Explore mode. Because it doesn't really work on both of these points, this mode ends up being mostly pointless, though it does give you a good feeling of 'progression', as opposed to simply earning money and opening up levels and medals. I also find the mode very unbalanced, because sometimes I'd beat the goal by a ridiculous amount, follow by a course I have to play 5 times, and back again. The XP and prize money don't really reflect difficulty either.

Explore Mode is the more traditional SSX fare, with most tracks having race, trick, and sometimes survival courses, with more options for each course than you'd find in World Tour mode. Survival (also in Would Tour mode) is new to SSX. Here you will have to make it to the bottom of the course without dying. The length you need to go to get a gold metal can be longer the course, which means once you get to the bottom, you go right back to the top and start over again. Until you die. This makes this 'survival' mode very different from anything in previous SSX games and can be closely compared to endless runners (i.e. Cannabalt). Trick and Race work very similar to previous titles. There's also a new avalanche mode that feels a bit like a mini-game, but takes the game and lets you play it from a different view. While it wasn't bad, it felt like a demo or mini-game at best, which is probably why I haven't seen it much in the game.

Courses, Death, and Rewind: The courses in this SSX have a very different feel than previous entries. The paths feel off-the-chart and not at all stadium-like. This makes the courses less memorable, but also gives a feeling of realism and each course has a more open feel to it. You don't just have one or two shortcuts, but the whole track feels like one open potential shortcut. I'm not sure if I prefer either type, they both have a lot of potential fun. The ability to die in the game adds some very difficult challenges and I found racing mode suffered the most from it. I also find I just plain think it ruins the pacing and fun of both racing and trick tracks. Previously, in racing, it's all about knowing the track and executing a near flawless performance. This time around though, there are a lot more places to fall and die, which makes you have to rewind. Unfortunately, the rewind only effects your character and the other racers speed ahead. The rewind is in 1:1 speed, so take the time it takes for you to realize you are in a chasm/dead-zone, then your reaction time to that, then the amount of time it takes to get to back to a point where you can safely not repeat the same mistake. You didn't just go from first to second place, you are now dead last. Also, half time time, I found that I'd end up somehow making the same mistake, so while you think you can back up to the exact moment you messed up, you actually have to back up several moments before. Meanwhile, a snail passes you by. Overall, the feeling of the game is entirely changed for racing, from 'getting it just right' to 'oh please don't mess up'. Rewind works better in trick mode, where it reduces your trick points significantly every time you use it. In survival mode, it has a limited number of uses (3, I think), which makes sense. Unfortunately, Rewind is really easy to hit with classic controls, causing me to hit it for some of the more complicated trick. Also, being in rewind is how you place geotags. I accidentally placed at least two geo tags. Rewind should have been mapped to the select button.

Score multiplayer, combo, trick mode, and landing: In previous entries, there was a perfectionism in the precision of taking a big trick, then landing, then chaining it, then doing another trick. Here, you have a combo score and a multiplier. The manual in the game is unclear on how they relate, but at some point there was a loading screen that clarified. And yet, I'm still not sure I get it. And that's sad, because previous entries let you know exactly how the scoring system worked. I still can't tell if doing one long trick on a rail vs multiple is better in the long run. I miss the clarity and find the hud in this very unhelpful. Also, it's easy to accidentally cancel your combo. In SSX3, you had to use the right analog stick to do last minute adjustments. I was sad when this was simplified to a button press in SSX Blur, but in this game it is taken out entirely. You simply land it if you've released all the buttons. And I do mean all the buttons. If you tweaked a grab using the boost button, then you have to make sure you let go of boost before you land. This caused me to crash the first few times, but I got used to it. Now having to adjust before I landed allows for me to call it much closer than I would have in previous entries. I feel it takes a little fun out, but it adds a little risk. The multiplier here works differently too, relying on you keeping up your speed and continuing to do tricks, regardless of whether or not you combo them. As said above, it's hard to get a clear strategy from the game as to which one is more beneficial or exactly how they interact. While I like the idea of speed, I miss the perfection of squeezing out every perfection I could get out of a course. Though, now, you no longer have to worry about time limits, since they multiplier forces you to not go back or it will cancel out.

Pseudo-multiplayer: This game has no real multiplayer. It has, at best, vaguely interactive scoreboards. This works fine for trick mode, which was essentially previously a simultaneous one player experience (not much interaction). Unfortunately, race mode suffers. I no longer feel like I'm racing against people. Not even the CPU. I'm simply racing against a previously known time limit. In some modes, you can still knock the CPU down if you hit them with your character, but most modes have ghosts instead. This would be why they took out punching. Geotags are a new way to interact with other plays over asynchronous multiplayer, but I just didn't care much for it. I can leave it around, and the longer players don't get it, the more points I get for it. I just don't care much, especially when the reward is basically the same as beating a race. On the flip side, collecting them is a little fun, since it's hard to say how much they'll be worth.

Customization: This is a really odd one. The customization in this game can be easily compared to what you'd find in a facebook game. It's very off putting. Just like a facebook game you can spend extra money (real life) for extra credits (in game). The items you can buy are randomly selected and you have 4 options which can range from amazing to useless (especially in the beginning). I can honestly say I can't stand it. The different outfits are just different colors, sometimes they have a perk, but it never tells you the details of the perk other than 'extra boost' or the like. How much extra? It's annoying, because you can see a board you want, but then can't afford. Next time you go to the store it will be 4 different random items. When it comes to gear required for a coarse (such as the wingsuit), if you don't have it, it will randomly put at least on in the list, from what I can tell. But then, in order to play, you are stuck with having to buy that one gear, even if you know there's a better one you can afford just around the corner. Or, you could play another race and come back I guess.

Music: Music and interactive audio has always been a highlight in the SSX series. The series peaked with the soundtrack to SSX Blur, whose soundtrack was done by Junkie XL. Unfortunately, the music in this one isn't nearly as charming or interactive. The soundtrack is more similar to On Tour, which was a mixed bag instead of just doing it's own thing and sticking to it. The tracks also don't have the feeling of interaction that previous entries do. Previously, when you soar in the air, the drums drop out and atmosphere kicks in, with only parts of the music still playing. In this one, there is what sounds like a simple frequency cut off filter. It's still good, but not nearly as intricate as previous entries, especially not Blur. This one does allow you to load your own soundtrack though, instead of the 35 tracks available. The results are surprisingly good. When in the air the low frequency cuts off, when gliding there is a delay/doubling effect. It's good stuff. I wish the soundtrack were a little consistence, but since I can load my own, it more than makes up for it. Hopefully in the next one they'll get one artist to work on the whole thing. I'm hoping for Amon Tobin, who has at least one 'hidden' track in the game.

PS3 exclusive content: 2 different main routs and 6 ways to play it (3 trick and 3 race). I'm happy I own a PS3, but I'm sad to hear xbox fans are missing out. It won't be forever though, the box says content is exclusive until 8/29/12. The mountain is fun, but definitely not an easy course. Both routes feel similar honestly, so it mostly feels like 1 track with both trick and race options.

Overall: While this is a great overhaul of the series, but the overhaul already needs an overhaul. I'm mostly happy with it, but I can see why others might not be. It's a good scoreboard based game, but that may not appeal to some. I think I'll appreciate this entry in the series, even when a newer better one comes out. Hopefully we'll reminisce on how interesting the death mechanic was and how great it was that they took it out, but that it was a neat idea. I look forward to the next one and hope they listen to everyones complaints and ideas on this one. Inject some character back into the characters, get rid of death (my biggest gripe), bring back punching and real multiplayer (local and online), completely rethink customization (no facebook feel), give a variety of tracks (both memorable and open), have an amazing soundtrack, and you may have yourself the best SSX of all time.
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on February 28, 2012
So here is the deal. For me, this game came to my attention by surprise and the title itself was kinda (in my opinion) "under the radar" in terms of both marketing and publicity. At least, at first...now, the fact that this game is already sold out (first day) on Amazon speaks volumes as to how much "word of mouth" has taken this game. So if you've played the demo (which is exceptional) and still are unsure whether or not to purchase the game, then perhaps I can lend a hand and help you make a more informed decision.

Multiplayer: Okay, normally I don't start off with this topic, however this seems to be the one that people have the most concern about, therefore I feel I must address this first. There are basically two different types of multiplayer modes essentially. The first type is when you play in "Explore" mode. Technically this is a single player type mode, however I'll give it the "multiplayer seal of approval" because basically in this mode, if you have a friend that has played a certain course, it will let you compete with a "ghost" of them. Kinda like how back in (for example) Mario Kart (for those of you that have played it) or just about any racing game (like Gran Turismo) for that matter in which you would do a "Time Trial" and try and race against a ghost of yourself to beat your time. Well in this case, you're competing against the saved ghost of a friend (whether by beating their time or a certain amount of points). The other type of multiplayer mode, is basically the same thing, except rather than being limited to just your friend's times/scores you are competing in "Global Events" against the vast majority of those who own/rent SSX (provided they have an "Online Pass." If you're wondering if this game has at-home splitscreen multiplayer capabilities...I regret to inform you that it does not, so if that is a "deal breaker" toward purchasing this game, I would recommend searching elsewhere.

Gameplay: In short, for what it is, it's top notch. Getting more detailed however, there are game modes to endure. I already mentioned above the "Global Events" and "Explore" modes, yet also there is somewhat of a story mode called "World Tour" mode. This is where you can unlock all of the characters (although you can also unlock them by purchasing them with in-game credits) and also learn the basics of the game and the different types of gear that can be used to enhance/help you through each course. Basically there are 9 regions (and also as a PS3 exclusive, a Japan Mt. Fuji level is included in "Explore" mode) to explore each with several courses that you can play through. These courses are split into three categories: Race, Tricks, and Survival. The first two are pretty much self-explanatory, and as for "Survival," that basically puts your boarder up against various extreme conditions and you're given a certain type of gear to help aid you through the challenge (whether it be an oxygen tank to help you survive thin air at Mt. Everest, or an Ice Axe to help you board more smoothly on overly icy surfaces). Each character n the game levels up, and as they do so, you can purchase new gear to improve their performance; I haven't seen it all yet, but so far there seems to be a decent amount of customization. Anyway, having said all that, there is a lot of replay value in all of this (especially if you're into collecting trophies and such). It's actually kinda cool to try and outscore or beat your friend's records...a very satisfying feeling if I may say so myself.

Graphics: Very well done. No, they're not phenomenal, however you can clearly tell that both time and effort was put into trying to make this snowboarding experience a feast for the eyes. All the locations and various weather conditions are accurately portrayed here in this game. So if you're the type of gamer where "looks" are important, then I can safely say you will not be disappointed here.

Sound: Overall, the sound here is not too bad. The soundtrack itself used during the game is actually fairly enjoyable, however the voice acting is mildly cheesy...also the things that the characters say is kinda cheesy as well...Yet this game isn't suppose to be serious. It's a sports fantasy that let's players enact their wildest dreams at the touch of a button, so with that in mind, I'll let the "cheesy factor" slide, since it is all in good fun!

Controls: Personally, I find them fairly easy to get use to. For those of you that may be veterans of the series, the game allows you to switch to-and-from an SSX Classic controls setting (which is actually pretty neat). Yet aside from that, I haven't really had any trouble with either bad camera angles or controls what so ever, which is a definite plus!

Alright, now with that out of the way, here are what my scores for the game itself would be:

Graphics: 4/5
Controls: 4/5
Sound: 5/5
Multiplayer: 4/5
Gameplay: 5/5

Overall: 4.5/5

To be honest, it's hard for me to give the game a score of a "4.5/5" cause in my opinion, that seems a little low. It really is a great title and it is a rather enjoyable arcade-style action experience, but then again, I have to force myself to realize that it isn't exactly perfect...the multiplayer is great, but COULD have been better (especially with the use of at-home splitscreen). Either way, these are just my own thoughts and personal opinions on the game. Hopefully with this review you can pick up a copy and see for yourself! Bottom line, I'd definitely say to AT LEAST give this game a rent, but I would definitely say it warrants a purchase (if you're into these sorts of games). :)

Update (March 4, 2012): Alright, I've had quite a bit of playtime with this game since receiving it on it's release date and I must say, this game truly is incredible. I didn't think I'd end up clocking in as much time with this game as I already have but life is full of surprises. It would be a crime for me to not STRONGLY recommend this game. There is nothing quite like that "rush" or feeling you get when you take down a friend's score or beat their time in an event and you'd be doing yourself a disservice if you choose not to AT LEAST pick this up as a rental. Again, I know I'm slightly being redundant here, but the purpose of this update is to show that my stance on the game hasn't declined, in fact, it may have grown even better!

Update: (March 6, 2012): I've earned 52% of the trophies now for the game (there are 37 trophies in all for those wondering), so I've put in a decent amount of time playing this. I'm going to change my score for the "Sound" category from "4/5" to "5/5." Why? Well as another reviewer mentioned, you can edit the music that plays in-game with a playlist/songs of your own (provided that you've uploaded them onto your PS3). Nothing quite like racing to the sounds of "Paradise City" or "Party Rock Anthem." This is a really neat feature that I believe more games should implement in the future. Anyway, if you have any questions, feel free to ask!
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on April 17, 2012
I bought this game for 30$ off here when it was on sale, had I of bought it for full price then I would feel ripped off. The game looks and runs great but it just seems to lack that personalized flare that the other SSX titles had. Whereas the racing seems too fast paced and short and same for the trick events, the survival is an interesting new addition to the series. The characters seem empty and lifeless, this is not good since the unique personalities of all the characters are one of the things that made SSX so great.

Overall not bad but it isn't worth 60$.
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on March 16, 2012
I really enjoyed SSX for the first few hours. The only problem with the game were the cliffs... way too many cliffs, both on the sides of the levels as well as in the middle of the levels. I enjoyed tricking and racing, but having to rewind due to falling off a cliff took way too much time away, and kept demolishing my trick score. The game is beautiful, the gameplay is overall really fun, but the cliffs that are in almost every level kill the experience, making the game almost unplayable.
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on March 12, 2012
I was a fan of the previous SSX games but I really wasn't sure how this one would pan out.

The Good

The graphics are great. The locations are cool. The controls are decent once you get used to the new layout. The multiplayer is great and keeps you coming back for more. The music is decent. The new tools can be fun in small doses.

The Bad

Some of the tracks make you want to throw your controller through the screen. There are too many places where you can kill yourself. This is where this game loses some of it's charm. Instead of feeling invincible like you did in the old ones you often just feel fustration.

You cannot create your own avatar. After "On-Tour" I thought that would have stayed in the series but they took it away. That was a bummer.

The "buy credits" bothers me. When you already paid full price for a game you should only have to pay for DLC. Granted you would never need to buy credits if you play the game for a while but the fact it's there seems cheap.

Overall

In the end this is the best extreme sports game you can buy. It could use some tweaking but it's still a fun game that will keep you playing. I have no idea why some people would rank this one star. There is nothing in the game that would warrent that.
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on January 23, 2014
Do you remember Jet Moto? It was a game very similar to MX vs ATV or other mini vehicle racing games at that time. Basically, you had these floating jet skis that flew over land and water, and you raced. The pace of that game, especially now considering the change in graphics, was unbelievably fast. As a kid, I remember being able to race my dad or my brothers through the maps. I knew every turn, every obsticle, and it was really fun for me. Trying that game now is impossible for me. I can't even see what's going on on the screen. It's insanely fast, and it has pretty random obsticles everywhere. There are small problems, like places where ramps are just slightly too high for you to get on at any angle, and you end up crashing into them. The game is really dated now, and it's hard to play a game like that. For me anyway.

SSX reminds me of literally all of the best parts of Jet Moto. The speed of SSX isn't immediately at breakneck pace, but gets there as you go along. The more combos you rack up, the more you can use your tricky meter and go insane. You hardly ever bail out once you get used to the controls, which honestly doesn't take very long. When you have the tricky meter, you literally set on fire and start doing crazy 360s. The game makes great use of it's environment and every mountain has a lot of variety. There are a ton of different game modes and a crazy amount of things to do. A lot, if not all of the classic characters you might know from the SSX series show up. The game really is amazing, and you should give it a try. It was $12 when I picked up this copy. If it's $12 or less, get it.
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on January 11, 2013
I purchased this game at christmas and love it. I am not sure why others are complaining about this game. The scenery is great as usual and when you do enough tricks you get the TRICKY and you light up. Same game play that I remember and you can even race like the past games. It now has online score tracing that you can beat people and I recently play against a live oponent. I am a Black ops 2 game lover and take it from someone that plays games ofton. This is my second favorite game! Please let amazon know below if this was helpful information.
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on December 3, 2012
I played the original SSX games and bought this one because I was feeling nostalgic. Here are a few points on the game:
-No split screen multiplayer, which was a major bummer.
-Maps are very mountainous and have many many different ways to get to the bottom.
-Single player mode has players riding down various challenges and each new area requires a new subtle tweak to the gameplay. For example, some maps require a squirrel suit so you can glide over large gaps in the mountain. Others require ice picks so you can turn on the ice. Basically this just adds another interesting level of depth to the gameplay, which is otherwise riding a snowboard down a mountain.
-Basically you ride the gnar pow down the mountain as quickly as possible or string tricks together in order to get massive scores.

Not as great as the originals in my opinion, but an interesting game none the less. Check out a full game review elsewhere for more!
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on March 6, 2012
I'm finding this game to be plenty of fun. The new controls, while being _very_ different from the older SSX titles, were easy to adapt to and add a little bit to the tricking, since you can "slide" from one hold to another now. You can change to the old controls if you want or need to.

The thing that I really enjoy about this game is the fact that it will get my heart racing, and I'm often surprised to find myself jumping up out of my seat when I finish a close race, or realizing my legs are flexed tight when I biff a large Uber trick. Not that many games (outside the horror genre) do this for me, so it is fun to play a game that connects so viscerally.

The online feature is kinda neat, after getting used to it. You can get point by choosing the run you do in Global Events carefully, or just see how you do against the other 25,000 people that have run that drop in the last X days.

As for the single player "story" mode, it's pretty damn easy, at least for the first 4 mountains. At least it unlocks all the characters for you in Event mode.

On the Con side, some of the loading screens seem glitchy. After a race or trick even, it might take 7 to 10 seconds to be able to click "X" to continue while the same seems to do... nothing. Also, the way the score and placement is calculated in Global Events could use some polish. Nothing game breaking, but I'll be happy when a patch or two comes out. Finally, a split screen mode would have been awesome for me and the wife.

Overall, a very fun game. I've recommended it to my local friends with PS3 (and kids)
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