Wednesday, October 10, 2001

Game Review: Gran Turismo 3 A-spec

Polyphony Digital is going to take you on "The ride of your life" with Gran Turismo 3 A spec, and what a beautiful ride it is!
Unlike GT2, GT3 has both the arcade and simulation mode on one disk (DVD vs CD). The arcade mode offers the usual asortment of features such as Single race, Time Trial, Free Run, and 2 player battle. New to the series is i-link battle where you can connect up to 6 PS2's and set up a LAN, you just need 6 copies of GT3 and 6 TV's....
Now lets look under the hood of what makes the Gran Turismo series so fantastic, the Simulation Mode! All racing enthuisasts begin at home with 18k credits to buy their first car, sorry there's no way to transfer any of your save data from GT2. Your garage can hold 200 cars, but that's ok since there's only about 190 cars in GT3. Game Status can be checked in Home as well.
The GT3 map is a bit cleaner looking than GT2, besides Home, Go Race, License Center, and Machine Test GT3 expands on GT2's Car Wash. GT Auto is where you bring your ride to get cleaned and new to the series is oil changes. Yes you have to keep an eye on your oil, like in real life once 3k miles goes by it's time to bring that ride in for an oil change. If you ignore your oil your car will lose HP and torque and could cost you a race by tenths of a second, so change your oil! The Wheel Shop in GT2 is now incorporated in GT Auto so go get those chrone rims there. Another change on the map is the Car Dealership, all the manufacturers are in the one location instead of North (N. Euro), South(America), East(Asia) and West(S. Euro) Cities. GT3 takes the Tune Shop out of Home and makes it's own location on the map.
Lets go to the dealership and buy a car!
*= In GT2 not in GT3 += New manufacturer
Japan Manufactuers:
Tommy Kaira
U.S. Manufacturers:
U.K. Manufacturers:
Aston Martin
German Manufacturers:
Mercedes Benz
Ruf (Porsche)
+Belgium Manufacturers:
French Manufacturers:
Italian Manufacturers:
Alpha Romeo
+Australian Manufacturers:
Now that you have a car lets GO RACE!
This section is set up similarly to GT2, there are three leagues,one Rally Event and Endurance Races. Many of the races, challenges, Cups and Championships are going to be familiar to those who played GT 1 and 2. But GT 3 adds in plenty of new to keep the experience fresh.
The Sunday Cup, Clubman Cup, FF/FR/MR/ 4WD challenges, K-Cup (formerly Compact Car World), Race of NA/Turbo Sports, Spider & Roadster (formerly Convertible Car World), 80's Sports Car Cup, Gran Turismo All Stars, and The Gran Turismo World Championship races all return from GT2 and show up in Beginner, Amatuer & Professional league.
Add to that car specific races such as, Tourist Trophy, Legend of the Silver Arrow, Altezza Race, Vitz Race, Type R meeting, Evolution Meeting, Beetle Cup, Race of the Red Emblem, Elise Trophy, Clio Trophy, and the TVR Challenge.
Then there's the Stars & Stripes Grand Championship (formerly US Nationals), Japanese/American/Euro Champion Races, German Touring Car Championship, All Japan GT Championship, Dream Car Championship, British GT Car Cup, Italian Avante Garde, Polyphony Digital Cup, Like the Wind and the Formula GT Championship.
Polyphony Digital has you kissing your social life goodbye, but we're not done yet! If you somehow complete all there is in the three leagues you can throw some dirt tires on your cars and take the challenge of Rally Events like, Tahiti Maze, Smokey Mountain, Alps, and the Super Special Route 5 wet which really showcases the power of the PS2.
The Endurance races await only the hardcore racing fans, but the rewards are worth it!
Grand Valley
Seattle 100 miles
Laguna Seca 200 endurance
Passage to Colosseo
Trial Montain Endurance
Special Stage Route 11
Roadster Endurance
Tokyo 246
Mistral 78 laps
Superspeedway 150 miles.
If you own a Playstation 2 weather you like racing games or not you should get GT3 it is without a doubt PS2's killer app! If this is a first generation PS2 title I can't imagine what's in store for our future. To compare the graphics of GT2 to GT3 is like comparing Billy's 6th grade art to Salvidor Dali's paintings. No other racing game on any console in gaming history comes close to the magnificense that is GT3 except maybe pole position....J/K!
Graphics are amazing, music is great, there's enough here to keep you behind the wheel for months!

Friday, July 20, 2001

Game Review: NBA Street

EA BIG is taking us from the powder to the blacktop with their own style basket ball game. This ain't the NBA, this is the Street, and if ain't got the skillz, ya gonna get schooled.
First thing you need to do is create yourself, the games player create mode is deep, choose a gender, pick you're nickname like "Main Event", "Queen B", "Predator" or "Terminator" know something that's gonna strike fear into the hearts of the other team lol.
From here on out you get 500 points to spread among height, weight, and the skills: 2 pt, 3 pt, dunks, power, blocks, steals, handle, and quicks. So you could have a 7'1" 265 lb player but you'll have 0 points to put towards the skillz. Then there's the look you want your baller to have, there's initially 6 different heads to choose from, 9 bodies and 8 different types of sneakers. As you progress thru the game more options will become available to help customize your player.
Alright dawg now grab two ballers from any of the 29 NBA teams and go forth and earn that nick name! As you advance through the City Circuit you will be able you add new players to your roster as well as drop ones to make room for more desirable players. STREET has 12 different venues, Beacon Hill, Pacific Blvd., South Beach, Broad St., Route 66, The Yard, The Cage, Venice Beach, The Loop, Yakatomi Plaza, Fort Point and Rucker Park . As you play on these venues your skills will be put to the test against some of the local legends like Biggs, Bonafide, Drake, DJ, Takashi and Stretch. Each has a unique playing style and each comes with the attitude that a real street baller would have.
Whether you're playing solo against the CPU or against a friend in hold the court this game is so much fun and you don't need to be a super fan of basketball to appreciate this game! Street is brought to you by EA BIG the guys that brought us the snowboarding gem SSX! Street plays using similar controls, any combo of the four shoulder buttons + square will perform and advanced trick like "slip n slide" or the "down shift"...break some ankles yo! Or perform some sick aerial acrobatics with a super dunk like "Dinner's served" or hook it up with an alley oop to a super dunk to gain insane trick points and fill up the boost meter to unlock your "Game Breaker".
Street's controls are easy to get familiar with, especially if you've played SSX, the controls are are very responsive and the in-game physics are spot on...all things considered, the player models are BIG and expertly animated just like the SSX crew. The game is very well balanced in Hold the Court mode and a 3 on 3 game to 21 can be as exciting to play as watching the Knicks Vs. Bulls Finals from back in the day. Like SSX, Street has a quality soundtrack that fits perfectly with the atmosphere and isn't too heavy in one certain genre. And if you're good enuff you can even get Keily, Naturi and Adrienne from 3LW on your squad!
Other fun extras to find in Street is Moby Jones and Zoe Payne from SSX, Tracey Maretti from Sled Storm, NYC Legends Skip to my Lou, The Goods and Starbury.
Whether you're into sports games or not give NBA Street a try! You will have a ball :P