Reviewed by RanmaM@aol.com
When I think of the games Acclaim have made in the past, it really
annoys me. They are so inconsistent with top-quality software.
Acclaim know they can produce games that are superb, just look at
Turok, but on the other side of the scales, they have games that
weigh them down more heavily. Now again here comes another N64
release, this time with the help of Probe, a small but very experienced
and practical developing company. Extreme G was first hailed to be
"WipeOut with bikes", then after a few months this changed to
"Multi-player Descent", also "extremely fast Tunnel B1". Well the
closest game that resembles EG is most definitely WipeOut.
The presentation to EG is plain and simple, much like the movie
'Tron'. Futuristic screens and X-Wing style sound effects, whenever
you choose an option. A real-time intro of the game, is all your
going to get out of Acclaim. It's like a little teaser for you, making
you want to plug in and play straight away. Extreme G's main selling
point will be it's speed and expect to see in fly at you in a dozen!.
Along with the usual health warning at the beginning of the manual,
there should also be a small comment saying "Have you had your
breakfast before you play this game?". The speed is phenomenal, it's
mind blowing, it's face ripping and seat burning stuff.
During a one-player game it looks fantastic, with two player it's also
fine. Three and four-player modes keeps most of the detail, albeit in a
small screen, plus the infamous Fog effect, it's not as close as in Turok
and it looks better than the dreaded pop-up that can destroy games. One
thing to take notice of is the speed stays the same through-out the game,
no matter how many players there are. Sometimes, and only sometimes,
the N64's frame-rate can't keep up, and it's cut down a notch. But it will
effect the game for not even half a second. The track detail in each of
the four worlds, resemble the atmosphere great. Each world contains
three tracks. They are long and amazingly designed. The later tracks in
the game, which only become available on completion of the Easy difficulty
level, are the best. Loops, corkscrews, 90 degree drops and 50ft high jumps.
While your bike races around the track at a minimum of 300 MPH, there are
many extra effects going on around you. The one to look forward to is the
last track, it's set on a space-station and has huge UFO's flying by and
shooting at you, trying their best to put you off, and it's works!
Now EG does not have a soundtrack with the likes of Prodigy on it, but
by Acclaims standard this is a job well done. The music more futuristic
than Rave/Dance. The bikes have that humming noise, like a Star Wars
fight scene. The overall effects don't stand out but it's enough to get
you engrossed with the atmosphere.
EG has a Tournament - available for two-players as well, Battle
Mode - 2 to 4 players on either any of the tracks or the four specially
designed arenas, in different varieties as well, Time Attack and an
excellent inclusion Shoot'em-up. With this you have three laps on your
chosen track to blast as many computer controlled opponents to
smithereens. They come in packs of five's and reappear after each set
is destroyed. Beating my high score each time actually makes me sweat
and hyped up for another game.
Every bike handles differently. They are split up into - Speed, Acceleration,
Turn, Shield and Weapons. With the movie 'Tron' in mind the bikes are
magnetic and have no riders riding on them, instead your rider is inside.
If you've ever rode a Bike before you know that the more you lean to
one side the easier it is to do sharp turns, the analogue pad is used
amazingly. It's perfect for a bike style game, you can simply judge
corners with the ease of just moving the stick a touch. It will take a
few goes at trying to get used to this, but once mastered you'll appreciate
then control of EG. Mini-guns are the only thing that's different in terms
of weapons on the bikes, otherwise along the track you can pick up an
array of screen-shaking missiles and specials. I knew I was in for a
good time, when the first ever weapon I picked up, attached two Rocket
Launchers to the side of the bike.
Extreme G had the makings of an amazing game, and it is. Not everyone
will appreciate the speed, many will feel it's unplayable because of
this. But EG is not meant to be a simulator or some perfect racer, its
been made for pure fun and entertainment. It does this in very high
doses. Along with many secrets to uncover and a fast paced multi-player
Battle Mode, this is a brilliant game. Well done and keep this up Acclaim.
It could have turned out to be a carbon copy of WipOut but instead it's a
superb example of an old racing idea made atmospheric and action packed.
Replay Value: 9.0