best artists were mad, the best
scientists were mad, the best sociopaths were mad and the best
snowboarders must be mad. Me? I'm completely fucking raging-mad
but not in a crazy sense, no: I'm just plain mad that I paid 30
quid for Nintendo's flippin' 1080 Avalanche.
What do 30 notes get you today? A few CDs, perhaps
a nice new warm jumper, 13.63 pints of beer, or the latest Nintendo
game in a discount deal from Gamestation in Bath. One Friday in
December: I had no new music to play, I went cold, and was completely
sober but I did have a new Nintendo game. Lovely – or so
Bored of these yet? Yes, it's Amped2,
no SSX3, no 1080, umm?
So there I was watching the loading screen for
the first time - a nervous moment, always full of anticipation
and intrigue. I had a quick scan around the various play modes,
before settling on a match race. Naturally I opted to play the
petite, strangely attractive, yet neutral, girly character. I
won the first race. I was impressed by how smoothly the game moved.
The control and feel was a joy, the noise of the snow brushing
under the board sounded as crisp as it looked - all signs pointed
towards an evening of game joy.
And 1080 is great, except that it's not, well
it is, but it isn't. What there is of the game is gorgeous. The
action is frantic, the tracks beautifully crafted, and head-to-head
multiplayer racing is close and energetic. But here's the thing:
I've completed it. I bought it on a Friday, I finished it on the
Sunday afternoon – total play-time was less than 10 hours.
Now, there's nothing left to do except play the match races again,
with different characters, and maybe unlock some different costumes.
I'm falling asleep just writing about the thought of that - it
has all the appeal of standing outside a bus-station, writing
down all the bus numbers and then doing it again the next day.
So I'm mad. I paid £30, for less than
10 hours of action. What there is of 1080 is good, but it's too
easy. I'm an average gamer, not great - yet I finished the Novice,
Hard and Expert Modes on the first attempt. Every track, every
race won on my first attempt. Effort required: nil. Challenge
felt: nil. Reward: Extreme level - which turns out to be just
mirror modes of previously completed tracks.
The Japanese packaging is nice, might
get it for that. When it gets down to a
tenner on eBay.
What about multiplayer then? Yes that's good,
except that you can only race head to head and there's only six
tracks to choose from, that's it. Want to have a multiplayer gate
attack? Tough, you can't. So while I'm on the upwards slope of
rant gradient of about 5:1, which crack smoking loon decided that
entering a code was a sensible solution to accessing the Avalanche
tracks once you’ve unlocked them? Hello? Hello, McFly? Ever
hear of a ‘memory card’?
Every fanboy knows that Miyamoto-san believes
modern games are too long. When it comes to 1080 Pissalanche:
he is wrong. I will tattoo that on my arse, photocopy my arse,
and then personally distribute it to every Nintendo freak, anywhere,
if I'm not right. Most players can’t afford to throw cash
at 10-hour games - it’s just too shallow a return-on-investment.
Shame on you Nintendo, shame on you for turning such a promising
game, into such an unrewarding experience.
RODENT CASH RATING -
away, my pretties."
Here. (It's working again)
Things to 'Make' and 'Do'.
Short and irritating? Yes! It's Ronnie
Weirdly compelling site about avalanches.
yourself up, with Disappointment.com