Saturday, 29 February 2020

Supercross 3D (Atari Jaguar review)

Developer: Tiertex Design Studios
Publisher: Atari Corporation
Released: 1995

Supercross 3D is a motorcycle racing game that's exclusive to the Atari Jaguar.


The modes are Practice (solo session), Race (compete against seven other riders) and Tournament (circuit across all 14 tracks). Tricks can be executed with the C button and you can customise your bike by selecting the tires, shocks and gears to suit the surface of each track. The frame-rate is pretty much a slideshow and trying to control your bike is nigh-on impossible due to the oppressive over/under-steer you'll face depending on whether or not the game decides to register your inputs. This shockingly low FPS results in the action being entirely broken and you'll spend more time crashing your bike than you will riding it. The track edges don't offer any let-up either, as instead of decreasing your acceleration they'll knock you down immediately if you touch even the slightest part of them during a perilous corner manoeuvre. Simply put, the racing is extremely nerve-wracking for completely the wrong reasons! Bearing all of this in mind, it almost goes without saying that trying to land your bike at the correct angle for an ideal landing, or attempting to time perfect ramp launches is out of the question. To top things off, the trick system is pointless, and the track design is totally uninspired with each location looking and playing almost identically. You can at least save your Tournament progress, but trying to endure 14 races is a punishment that few are likely to withstand! I do like the track-side TV screen with its mirrored racing action, but that's the only compliment I can give to the graphics which are a blurry, muddy mess. The music also fails due to its short loops and awful, cliched rock riffs.

Supercross 3D is a complete and utter shambles and Atari Corporation should be embarrassed to have published a game that's clearly this unfinished. The list of problems is remarkable and when you factor in the atrocious frame-rate, godawful controls and superfluous trick system you have a real recipe for disaster.



Random trivia: The game even fails at the intro screen, as it lists the title as Supercross X!

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