As every other gamer does out there I’ve found myself with too much time on my hands and not enough games to play. Don’t get me wrong I do eventually plan on finishing Lost Planet and Mass effect two but that day isn’t today. Today is the day where I play Joyride Turbo, an Xbox live arcade title. When I first saw this title the man in mas was screaming CAMMMMOOONNNNN KEEP SCROLLING THIS GAME IS FOR KIDS, I’M A MAN! While I was really thinking about how awesome this game looked and trying to figure out how I was going to be able to hide my shame when people found out that I had played this game. I took the plunge and found myself looping around stunt tracks and trying to collect all the car parts and loving it! Go ahead and judge me but this game has some great features that kept me captivated for longer than I had expected.
The first thing I noticed when launching this game was that it is NOT! Kinect enabled, not that I found at least. I was expecting another crappy Kinect title that was simply made to work with kinect because kinect is the new kid in town. Don’t get me wrong kinect is cool with a few friends but I seldom find myself playing kinect adventures or kinect sports by myself. I was pleasantly surprised by this fact and instantly regained some of my man credibility when I could use my good old analog sticks and not flail my arms around pretending I knew what was going on. Since reading instructions isn’t for me I figured I’d jump right in to a race. For most people this shouldn’t be an issue other than the immense confusion that occurs for the first half of the race, everything else went as expected. Once I started to comprehend the game I found myself enjoying launching guided missiles at people and dropping spiked shells that make people explode and spin out of control. Wait, is this Mario Kart? I did find myself comparing this game to Mario Kart by the end of the first race. They even split the events into 100cc, 200cc and 300cc. With this resemblance established I found out there are many other similarities such as getting a boost if you time your start just right, drifting and almost every single box you pick up has a power up identical or close to Mario Kart. What I found myself to be paying the most however is not something you find in Mario Kart, Stunt Track mode is probably the best part of this game. In this mode you can find new car parts to unlock new vehicles and trophies. Trophies are just for bragging rights but both stunt tracks have 40 vehicle parts and 40 trophies. I found myself trying to capture every single vehicle part and in doing to I had a great time taking insane jumps and staying in the air for what seemed like 10 seconds at a time.
Unfortunately for this game it wasn’t Mario Kart and I found a few things that as a man I did not appreciate. The races seemed much too short, and had way too many “Short cuts”. Yes I put that in quotations because every time I took one I either stayed in the same position that I was in or fell behind! Very disappointingly I found myself avoiding moving off the track because it would cost me a race on the 300cc circuits. I think the longest race was perhaps 3 minutes that is a 5 lap race, this is just disappointing because there is no real battle for a position and right when you start getting comfortable on the track its over. During these extremely short races I found myself doing insanely crazy flips in a car to acquire turbo, which was great until I found out its really hard to mess up these jumps. Releasing the thumb sticks early enough in the air made it a guarantee to acquire turbo almost rending turbo useless since everyone constantly has it. Also acquiring new cars is much more complex than I had anticipated. After tearing up the 100cc and 200cc circuits you would think I had unlocked a majority of the cars right? Not the case in fact I hadn’t unlocked a single car. The problem is that each car required 3 parts that must be found throughout the different racetracks and the stunt tracks. I found 2/3 of many cars but could never find the last part and therefore never got to unlock the cool new cars with the hundreds of thousands of dollars that I had accumulated. I did get to buy a bunch of different paint jobs for the three cars that I did have… it was really exciting. The lack of tracks was also disturbing. On top of being extremely short I swear there were no more than six tracks in this game, which would perhaps be acceptable to some people, but for me since the longest race was only 3 minutes that means the entire game can be played in under an hour (if only the circuits are considered)
As much as I wanted this game to be great there were just a few shortcomings that really held it back from being a good game. Again I’d like to remind you that as a man this game did not satisfy me, as a child however I think this game would be a great buy but then again, anything is exiting for children. The game does have a good selection of standard game modes we have all come to expect such as multiplayer both online and split screen and single player standards. Its not for the lack of options that the game failed I could just never get over the fact that the races were too short, there were not enough tracks and vehicles were insanely hard to unlock.