MotorStormMy first impressions of Motorstorm were that it was going to be yet another mediocre, full throttle racer and that may be your first impressions too but don't give up on this priceless title and give it a try.
If you are bored of donning a formula racing car or a pimped voyage and fancy something a little more "dirt friendly" then Motorstorm is the ideal racer for you. In Motorstorm you race it out in one of the seven vehicle types against a maximum of fifteen other AI racers or if you prefer playing online you can race with up to eleven rivals.
First things first, the vehicles of Motorstorm range from the nimble speed bikes to the behemoth like "Big Rigs." They all might look different and you may jump to the assumption that bikes are the fastest and Big rigs are the slowest but you would be wrong: all vehicles travel at similar speed if you know which path to take. There are seven vehicle types in Motorstorm. The Speed Bikes are the smallest and most flexible of the seven but the driver can easily be dismounted from the slightest bit of contact. The All Terrain Vehicle (or quad bike) is as prone to damage than the Bike but feels a little more bulky and stable. The Buggies are slim and can handle most terrain types but can give you a hard time steering. The rally cars are built to speed the straights on the track but are very fragile and will blow apart if you swerve into any hard terrain. The Trucks are fairly easy to manoeuvre but can run quite rough on specified terrain types. The Mud Pluggers aren't too great but if your on a boggy track and keep in the mud you will storm ahead of the pack. Last of all the Big Rigs, the huge lorry like vehicles that tend to be slow starters but at full throttle can smash apart cars in its way but fails to show off airborne capabilities. Each vehicle type has at least four different variations of design and if that doesn't satisfy your needs you can select a different paint job or even use you PSN wallet to purchase some of the downloadable ones.
There are eight tracks to play on, each set in the same kind of sandy location but each with its own unique features. Maps range from the long stretches and air bursts of the Dust Devil to the treacherous turns and perilous drops of the Rain God Mesa. Every map you play on Motorstorm is equal as run but you will find that there are some favourites out there, especially for online players. There may not be a difference into how the maps look on the outside but rest assured, each one plays out differently and there are a few paths to take on each map with certain vehicles to gain an advantage.
Graphics are sweet, you get the sunrays bouncing off the wet mud on your vehicles and splash of sludge thrown up onto your car but there isn't much variation to how it does this. Mud and dust will always dirty your screen in the same spots and vehicles get dirty in the same places which can be annoying but hard to notice when your giving it full boost over a cliff top. The vehicle sounds are pretty average but changing those sounds could have made the game sound horrendous. The beeping of horns is rarely used and the full on crashes and explosions are quite plausible and throw you into a feeling of shame as you see your ride blast into tiny segments.
In the single player mode the goals are pretty simple, get a podium place every race. There are a couple of dozen tickets which have up to four different races on each which you need to clear. Once cleared you gain points which unlock newer and harder tickets and also new vehicles. New tickets may not seem like an incentive to do the single player but some of the unlock able vehicles are pretty cool.
Your speed in Motorstorm depends on a number of factors. Firstly the terrain, there are a few types of terrain from dust and rock to wet and mud which all effect how certain vehicles drive. If you match up the correct vehicle with its favourite terrain type you are guaranteed to gain a few places. Secondly your position on the track has quite an effect on your speed, if you start a race in last (which you usually do in single player) you will find yourself stuck behind all the other vehicles, therefore ploughing through them can prove difficult especially if you're driving a ATV and you try to take over a Big Rig. Lastly you N boost is a decisive factor in how it all plays out. Each racer starts off with their N bar empty. Nitrous boosts can't be used for the first ten seconds of a race so everyone starts equally. As soon as the ten seconds pass you are free to use your N boost via holding down the cross button, but be warned as you hold down the cross but your N guage starts to fill and when it reaches the limit, BOOM time, so it advised to keep a careful check on your guage at all times.
Some of the features described may already exist in other racing games but Motorstorm offers you a whole new perspective of looking at racing. The sheer ferocity of this game amplified by its amazing soundtrack including 'Slam' by Pendulum and 'Breed' by Nirvana makes it a storming success for the PS3 and if you are still not satisfied with the content you can download more from an ever growing list of expansions available.