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SSX Blur Review

It may be full of snow but SSX is hotter than ever

With so many Wii games suffering teething trouble as developers wrangle with motion-controlled gaming, SSX Blur is here to show everyone how it's done. Instead of trying to mimic the controls of the normal game with the Remote, the developer has completely rethought the way the game is handled.

Your boarder is manipulated almost entirely with the Nunchuk. You steer by tilting the Nunchuk left and right and push the analogue stick back and forward to accelerate and brake. Yes, you could steer with the analogue stick but this tilting system feels spot-on - you really feel like you're twisting that board and making it slice into the snow.

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Once you leap into the air, which can be done either with an upwards flick of the Nunchuk or by pressing A, the Remote springs into action. Flipping it left or right sends your boarder into a spin, while up and down movements make him perform somersaults and backflips. And a nice new feature for Wii owners is the ability to throw snowballs - just hold B to scoop some snow and flick the Remote to lob it at your target.

Uber tricks are back too, this time performed by gesturing with the Remote after charging up your Groove meter. As always with SSX, the courses allow you to throw yourself ridiculously high into the air, at which point drawing a large '0' with the Remote, for example, will get your boarder spinning like a windmill.

This control scheme works brilliantly and the feeling that you're actually snowboarding is enhanced by terrific use of sound and graphics. With gorgeous snow effects, detailed characters, fog and solar glare, as well as a pumping soundtrack, SSX Blur is one of the Wii's best audio-visual treats.

It's All A Blur

Our only problem with Blur is the fact that the gameplay modes don't have much new to offer. The single-player career works just as before - there are three peaks on which you prove your dominance by winning events. These challenges will be familiar to fans, with half-pipes, stunt runs and races on offer.

The multiplayer modes let you race split-screen with another player or you can take it in turns getting your highest score in a stunt run. Both modes work well, although they're nothing out of the ordinary. Fans might even recognise some of the courses as a selection of the best tracks from previous games are here (albeit with a few new runs).

Despite this old content, the hip graphics and awesome controls make SSX Blur feel like a great new game.


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