Do you enjoy getting dirty? Does the idea of playing in the mud excite you? If you answered “Yes” to either of these questions, then Mad Riders is right up your alley.
Mad Riders is an adrenaline-pumping racer that has the player speeding through dirt, mud, and backwater trails. This is an arcade game and not a simulator; it’s about high scores and winning. Once you start racing, there’s no reason to check your rear view mirrors or even look over your shoulder.
Mad Riders is a straight-forward racing game. The objectives are very simple; just win. Each course has boost tokens and shortcut tokens that are vital to winning. Boost tokens will build up your nitro gauge and give you a temporary boost. When you think of boost tokens, think NOS and racing cars.
The shortcut tokens come in handy when you find yourself falling behind the other racers. A well executed shortcut token could be the difference between winning or losing the race, so if you happen to see these on the race course, it’s smart to collect them.
There is a leveling system where you earn experience points after each race. New tricks unlock the further you progress through the game. You don’t begin with many stunt moves or tricks, but this improves as new ones become available.
Mad Riders is an easy game to play. This was rather surprising to me since most off-road games have a steep learning curve to them. It’s as simple as pressing the accelerator button and steering your vehicle; there are no tricky controls or confusing camera angles.
Faster vehicles, clothing, different decals and styles can also be unlocked during the single-player campaign (Tournament). There is plenty of content to reward the player.
Aside from all the presets that can be unlocked, you can customize the look of your vehicle. Nothing is off limits; you can color the handlebars and fenders and even the frame and rims. This allows your vehicle to stand out from the competition.
Some racing games limit the customization process to certain parts of the vehicle, eventually leading to everyone looking alike on the race track. Mad Riders allows you to express yourself in ways that other racing games do not.
The single-player campaign is divided into a calendar system. All the events are sorted into categories, and once you have completed a set of events, you will unlock a few more. Each category has a star ranking that must be met in order to clear it. As long as you finish in the top three, you will receive the stars from that category.
Each racing event on the calendar has about five races that need to be completed. Not every event will have the same race; some events will be different. The different races include: standard race, race the clock, stunt races and arena, ghost challenge and perfectionist.
The environments are designed well. There is a lot of space to race your vehicle and there are different trails to choose. The linear factor doesn’t exist in Mad Riders; you are given a great deal of freedom on the courses. Granted, the courses are nowhere close to being an open sandbox, but you don’t feel restricted either.
The tracks have a plethora of hills and jumps to help you gain the altitude needed to perform stunts. The hardest part is memorizing them all so you can maximize the most out of each jump. You can play the same course/map numerous times and never land the same jump twice.
Mad Rider’s graphics are stunning; they look realistic, but also have a cell shaded appearance to them. In some ways, they resemble a comic book with heavy outlines around the art. It’s not always noticeable, but on some maps it is. You can tell that a great deal of time was spent on the environments. The maps explode with detailed textures and vibrant colors. No matter how many times you replay a certain map, you will notice something different about it each time.
There is a large selection of music to be heard in Mad Riders. Most of it is mainly instrumental with no lyrics, but it’s fantastic nonetheless. The heavy metal/guitar music is off the charts; it keeps your adrenaline pumping the entire time during the race. The menu system also has a nice selection of music to listen to while you customize your avatar or ATV.
The single-player campaign offers hours of gameplay. When you’re finished with single-player, you can compete online with other gamers. You can also enjoy all your favorite racing modes and maps with your friends. You have the choice of joining/creating a LAN game or playing on the Playstation Network.
Mad Riders is one of the most intense off-road racing games available on the Playstation Network. And for only $9.99, how can you go wrong?
James ‘Daripp3r’ Pittaro
Publisher: Playstation 3
ESRB: E (Everyone)
|Gorgeous race tracks that have a tremendous amount of detail.|
|The ATVs sound authentic and the music is absolutely rockin’.|
|Nothing beats heart-pumping, arcade-style racing.|
|Mad Riders is a wonderful off-road experience. It’s fast, fun, and it offers countless hours of entertainment, both online and offline.|