SSX 3 - Xbox

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SSX 3 (Xbox)
Also for: PS2, GameCube
Viewed: 3D Third-person, floating camera Genre:
Sport: Snowboarding
Media: CD Arcade origin:No
Developer: Electronic Arts Soft. Co.: Electronic Arts
Publishers: Electronic Arts (GB/GB)
Released: 31 Oct 2003 (GB)
Unknown (GB)
Ratings: PEGI 7+
Accessories: Xbox Memory Unit


Ah, lifestyle and snowboarding, what could be more in keeping with today’s extreme sports-loving youth? Nothing, that’s what, which explains the popularity of snowboarding games, at least to some extent.

You can’t smash your leg to pieces in SSX, which kind of takes the edge off things, but you can get a quite sore thumb, bad enough injuries for some, including most of us.

SSX always came in for the criticism that “it’s not as good as 1080” which is a little unfair and is arguably a Nintendo-fan biases point of view. The third in the series, SSX 3 delivers more of the high-speed snowboarding thrill of the earlier games, whilst upping the all-important snow-deformation standards that are so important to the genre’s protagonists.

The concept underpinning SSX 3 is the belief that you go anywhere and do anything. The buzzword is environmental seamlessnes and EA Canada has been paying close attention to the way this philosophy has powered game sales in recent times.

SSX 3 is an awesome spectacle to behold, and is a massive jump in terms of technical achievement and gameplay over its predecessors.

Set over a slew of peaks at the EA Resort, SSX 3 is a pure snowboarding game and, luckily, does not follow the doomed and frankly appalling THQ lead of adding a rather weak story to what is already a winning gaming set-up and sticks to the bones of what is needed: Getting better at manipulating the game engine and controls, in conjunction with using the environment ala Tony Hawk.

Indeed, the gameplay is somewhat formulaic, in as much as you progress through the game by the magic of achieving a set of specified goals, which, when completed, unlock the next slope. Which, in our opinion, is all such a game needs.

It is the incredible environments that set SSX 3 apart from other, weaker snowboarding games, and proves that EA is still capable of taking even a jaded gamer’s breath away. Massive levels, packed with unspeakable natural disasters and hazards, make for easily the best snowboarding game, perhaps ever.

It’s just a shame that online functionality is restricted to PlayStation 2.