Games Meet Metal: Excitebike World Rally: Another Disturbying Review

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Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Excitebike World Rally: Another Disturbying Review

Background: 1985 is a pretty big year for pop culture. In movies you had Back to the Future, The Goonies, Rocky IV, and The Breakfast Club. In music you had the enormous Live Aid benefit concert, Megadeth's Killing Is My Business... and Business is Good!, Exodus' Bonded in Blood, Anthrax's Spreading the Disease and a bunch of Hair Metal from the likes of Bon Jovi, Motley Crue, Twisted Sister, W.A.S.P. and White Lion. And in video games you had the release of the Nintendo Entertainment System in North America and Excitebike was a launch title. Here we are 24 years later and we are treated to a brand new update of the classic side-scrolling, motocross game that we all know and love that you can download through Nintendo's WiiWare service.

Pros and Cons: When you fire up the game, right away you hear an updated version of the original Excitebike Theme as a racer drives past the logo. If you haven't figured it out by now, this game relies heavily on what made the first game so successful. The gameplay is fun and easy, and there is a decent amount of tracks (16 from the start) that provide just enough variety to keep you interested. Included in this version is a track builder where you can make some pretty crazy tracks filled with tons of obstacles. The update to the graphics doesn't change too much of the original art design, but it can still be appealing to the 3D gaming crowd. Also, the addition of an online multiplayer mode that allows you to play your custom built tracks is a HUGE boost to the longevity of this game which is good because for some reason the developers skipped out on an offline multiplayer mode. To me, that just doesn't make any sense. The gameplay is also a little too simple. Once you figure out how to land properly, you've pretty much mastered everything there is to know about the game. Oh, and that's something they teach you in the Tutorial. Aside from those two things, everything else about this game is pretty solid.

What Makes It Metal: The soundtrack for this game is a huge throwback to the original, so trying to find something metal about this game is a bit of a stretch. The only thing I can come up with is that this type of music inspired bands like Dragonforce and The Minibosses, the latter being known for their metal covers of classic videogame themes (like the Excitebike theme!). But that's about it.

Final Verdict: The biggest thing this game has going for it is the nostalgia factor. Chances are you're not going to be interested in this game unless you cut your videogaming teeth on the original back on the NES. Coming in at $10, gamers who are unfamiliar with the series may want to put their money elsewhere. But, for those of us who grew up playing Excitebike you will be happy to know that you will not be disappointed. Yea, the fact that you can't play an offline multiplayer match with your friends is a kick in the nuts, but at least you can go online and rule the virtual dirt sitting on your couch wearing nothing but that old Slayer shirt with pizza stains and holes in the armpits.

I give it an A-

1 comment:

  1. Excitebike: World Rally is a racing game that will keep you challenged with its ever increasing difficulty and entertained with its track editor and online play. Free Games Website.