STAFF REVIEW of Mad Dash Racing (Xbox)

Tuesday, January 22, 2002.
by Stephen Cameron

Mad Dash Racing Box art Eidos and Crystal Dynamics have delivered a very exciting Xbox launch title. This game supports one to four players of pure racing action, thus making a very good ?party? game. What I mean by a ?party? game is that although it has a single player option, this game comes alive when you hook up four controllers and race against three other of your good close friends. You race with the choice of up to nine characters, which all have their own strengths and weaknesses, and they all race in some really big and beautiful environments. But, unfortunately the single player mode is not quite there. The idea of the game is really good but this title should have been released when Microsoft?s online solution goes online it would have gotten more shelf life that way. Luckily, the game will keep you coming back for more in the long run, Eidos has teamed up with the controller companies Thrustmaster and Mad Catz that have on the memory unit a saved game that unlocks a special character to this game, which I think makes the game last a little longer than most. Overall, it?s a great first Xbox attempt by Eidos and Crystal Dynamics.

Like I said before, this is a really fun game! But you need another or a few human beings to play with you. The controls are sometimes very easy to get used to, and other times you can?t seem to pull off. Like the Rail Grind, and Zip Line?.I always had trouble doing these manoeuvres. But, you don?t NEED these to get the most fun out of this game and besides most people can just jump right into the action, without really needing to refer to the manual every time they need to pull something off.

The graphics of Mad Dash are excellent, the worlds are big, and the frame rate is consistent. The more people you play, the slower the frame rate. This also happens when you play games like this and Halo. There is always something moving on the screen, tumbling rocks, lava, water, monsters trying to stop you?all kinds. Overall the graphics are nice, but could be a bit better.

Dolby Digital Sound what more can a guy ask for? For those of you that don?t have this setup, you are truly missing out on the Xbox?s true powers! The environments are full of different sounds, and you can hear it all. Let?s just hope all their Xbox titles are Dolby Digital. The soundtrack is also another great feature of this game, with band like Fatboy Slim, Propellerheads, The Crystal Method and few others?.this I like! Real games, real bands!

More variety in the characters, online or LAN racing in the next version would be nice. Keep the big bands coming.

Overall: 8.0 / 10
Gameplay: 7.0 / 10
Visuals: 8.0 / 10
Sound: 10.0 / 10


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