It's In The Game

ssx-launchblog-header.jpg POSTED BY EA SPORTS ON Feb 28, 2012

SSX is Back

SSX is Back: Long-Time Fans of the Franchise Couldn’t be Happier

 

“Racing has never been faster, Tricking has never been bigger, and Surviving will never be forgotten.” - CharmyDweeng

What We Did

 

At the start of the SSX campaign, we sought out the most passionate, die-hard, long-time SSX fans we could find. We scoured forums, fan sites and even had a first-look contest that allowed fans from all over the world to come to the EA Canada studio in Burnaby, British Columbia to get an early look at SSX. We knew that if we could show these fans, our biggest and most scrutinizing critics that SSX was back, then we’d have a game that was worthy of the franchise name.We engaged with the community throughout development and constantly sought their feedback and opinions from everything from features to visuals.

Last week, we sent the most active members of the top SSX communities early copies of SSX to review. Let’s meet those people and see what they had to say.

 

Meet the Community

 

Philip J. aka CharmyDweeng, SSX Ubercast (Podcast)

Chris M. aka Gondee, MerquryCity

Anthony P. aka Soultron, NeoGaf

Vicki C. aka Vix, MerquryCity

Kevin F. aka Kav, Merqury City

Amanda D. aka SickOne, Merqury City

 

The Community’s SSX Review

 

The Introductions:

 

“I have been fostering the SSX Community for over 10 years now. I will be addressing this writeup from the perspective of an old school SSX player, so if you played the old games to death, you will be interested in what I have to say.” – Gondee

“I've been a long time SSX fan, since Tricky. After playing Tricky, I went back to get the original and never looked back from the series. It's one of my all time favorite series so to hear it was coming back, well I had mixed emotions at first. After seeing the first reveal back at the VGA's, I wasn't sure what to think.” – Vix

“As a fan of the series for 9-10 years now, I've been waiting for as long as everyone for SSX to make a grand return. I've been following the game's development period since May in my fan podcast, the SSX Ubercast, and seeing it now finally come together is an emotional and exciting experience.” – CharmyDweeng

“After waiting 9 years since the release of SSX 3 I have finally been able to play a true successor to one of my favourite childhood video games. After admiring my FedEX package for a solid 30 minutes, I popped SSX into my Xbox 360 and started playing.” – Kav

“Never before have I witnessed a team of devs. be so closely connected to a fanbase through social networking or at all. It was awesome…and made the fans feel like a huge part of the game (even though we are anyway). And I have to give you all credit for dealing with the animals that are SSX fans. So thank you for all your hard work and for believing SSX is still the best damn snowboarding game ever. – SickOne

“As someone who still owns and plays SSX3, of all the next-gen reboots and sequels I've played, SSX seems the most evolved in so many different aspects.” - Soultron

 

 

The Meat and Potatoes:

 

Race It:

 

“It looks and feels like the old SSX, but the turning is looser, the races are faster and the computer will challenge you from start to finish. If you're looking to set records, you will want to restart a lot - the best news is that SSX restarts a track in 3-4 seconds, so you won't be losing a lot of time to loading screens.” – Gondee

“One run through these events won't cut it -- you won't see everything the drop has to offer, let alone figure out all of the good short cuts for Race It.” – Soultron

“The sonic speed of this game is unreal and untamed. Take any previous game's max speed and that's probably your average rate of descent. But this comes with heavy punishment as the racing terrain is filled with obstacles and crevices you'll either have to avoid, or find the safer way around and stack up unwanted seconds. Picking the right line and managing boost consumption is the most vital skill to learn.”-CharmyDweeng

“The racing events really get your blood pumping. With the different terrain, elevations, jumps, twists and turns; it really becomes the challenge for those looking for it.”-SickOne

 

Trick It:

 

“…Some of the steepest courses and most wicked jumps you've ever hit, and you've finally got a reason to not just select Race. The risk-reward gameplay in Trick it is exhausting and satisfying at the same time. You're gonna have to throw it up huge to win these babies.” - CharmyDweeng 

“The new control scheme is buttery smooth and will get you tricking in no time flat. And if you are an old school SSX player, classic controls will allow you to step into the new SSX with no problem. The "Awesome is easy, and Oh My God is really hard" mantra has never been truer here.” – Gondee

“Players who love to trick are going to love the absolutely massive Siberia runs since it's going to have lots of replayability in terms of figuring out the best lines for Trick It high scores; the runs in Siberia are packed with kickers, rails, and natural terrain to shred.” – Soultron

“Even with all of the new aspects and other improved aspects, we were still able to defy gravity and pull off some insane tricks just like the old days.”-SickOne

 

Survive It:

 

“I can honestly say that SSX is back and back in all its former glory. I was wary at first.  I didn't like the idea of deadly descents and dying in SSX.  But once I had a run down one of the DD's, I was grinning ear to ear and I wanted to run it again.  I was worried they wouldn't feel like SSX but they feel like they were made for SSX.” - Vix

“This is the new horse in town, and where the new SSX really shows off. Many of these events are so diabolical that you'll be tearing your hair out and yet still going back at it to conquer the mountain. The new techology in the game like wingsuits and pulse goggles can make things a little easier, but make no mistakes, this is where the challenge is in this game and you'll be in awe at some of the vistas you have to tackle to make it past all the Deadly Descents. If you love everything about SSX, these events offer something no other SSX can match.” – Gondee

“The Deadly Descents are both an evolution in SSX gameplay and a most natural gameplay addition, in my opinion. I'd have never thought that such a seemingly basic mechanic such as staying out of the freezing shade (found in the Deadly Descent of Cold in Antarctica) would be so much fun; it forces you to approach these runs in an entirely different way.”- Soultron

 

Explore:

 

“I also like being able to go anywhere in the world and just ride around. I get a chance to explore the area and seek out different paths without worrying about my best time or highest score. Sometimes I like to just cruise around and make up my own plan of action for when I want to compete. Some people are naturals and other like me need some pre-hand planning.” – SickOne

 

“Explore, gives you the freedom to take your time and put effort into setting your scores. Playing against your friends’ absolute best times and scores, mentally cursing them along the way, is just as fun as doing it in the same room. Your competition is never easy, and you can do it all on your own time. Comparing against ghosts shows you what part of a track you're weak in, and what part you have an advantage.” – CharmyDweeng

 

“The added challenge of friends' ghosts has given me a bigger run for my money, as currently one friend has decided to beat all my scores but one. This game is crazy addictive, and with ghosts the competition has never been higher.”  - Kav

 

“Explore is a sort of personal hall of fame that everyone has where friends are welcome to come into and say, "Hey, well, that was a great time/score, but I did better, so I'm just going to leave this little reminder here for you." Explore is where people should be bringing their A-game.”-Soultron

 

 

Global Events:

 

“In Global Events, your friends are right there racing alongside you, you're forced to be on top of your game more than ever to get the largest payout. Going for top records is never something I was interested in in old games, but for THIS SSX, I can't imagine focusing on anything else. I will even go as far as to say the online in SSX is better than anything else we've seen before because it's tailor made for what every gamer will naturally be drawn to the first time they play. It's a hard concept to grasp at first, and I was more skeptical than anyone. Trust me, you'll spend hours upon hours playing these to death until you conquer everyone.” – CharmyDweeng

“The great thing is that there's always a new challenge in Global Events, so if your friends slip up, you have a new chance to beat them! Plus, being able to jump in with your friends at the same time -- live and simultaneously -- is awesome. Whoever said "SSX doesn't have real multiplayer" probably hasn't actually played Global Events. It's something new and I think a lot of people are going to be surprised with how addictive it can be.” – Soultron

“I like how the player can be creative in making an event for whatever period of time and adding restrictions to make it interesting.” – SickOne

 

World Tour:

 

“World Tour, in my opinion, was one of the greatest joys I have ever experienced in any SSX game. The personality, the characters, the objectives, and even the knockdowns kept me in a pure state of bliss and nostalgia as I kept improving within the game. The ranges got harder as I moved on, and unlike many side-stories in video games, SSX gave me some choice of where I wanted to go, dividing the ranges up in terms of difficulty.” –  Kav

“There is a World Tour mode that features a light narration and some cool cutscenes, and it can get you some credits early and also unlock characters and tracks for you to tackle. Catch up with old friends and tackle new challenges here, but even after you beat the 8-12 hour campaign, you still have the main challenge: Explore.” – Gondee

 

RiderNet:

 

“There's a lot of information conveyed by RiderNet, but it's all smartly organized on screen and the way its integrated into gameplay goes above and beyond what was offered by AutoLog. I think RiderNet was made possible by AutoLog first paving the way, but I think it's RiderNet's smart advances that will make the next iteration of AutoLog even better.” – Soultron

“The best part of SSX is RiderNet. It is hard to state how amazing this feature is - if you liked it in Need for Speed Hot Pursuit, you'll love it here and you'll find yourself constantly chasing your friends as they challenge your scores and beat your times. If you're good, you'll be rewarded as you earn credits as your friends try to beat your times and fail. But regardless of how well you do, you'll be coming back to SSX - it's hard to understate how much pull RiderNet has on the competitive aspect of SSX. It is literally twice the game because of it, and if you have a group of friends with the game you'll probably find your game time doubling, it's that addictive.” - Gondee

“Ridernet is amazing and that’s putting it lightly. I love the Ridernet recommendations; it’s made this whole online play experience so much better. They have helped me adjust and get comfortable to online play being someone who wasn’t very familiar with it. I’m an average player. I don’t get the fastest times or the highest scores and Ridernet understands that. I love that Ridernet will make a suggestion that’s on my level. So now I’m not competing against impossible opponents and I can actually have fun being the best every once in a while.” – SickOne

 

 Massive World:


“SSX's best accomplishment in my book is the world it has created. You'll use words like Gorgeous, Unreal, Insane, and Why are we going here again? But the atmosphere shines most in the game's new mode, Survive It.” – CharmyDweeng

“The level design isincredible. When I say it's massive, it's massive. You might think you know how big these runs are -- probably from watching trailers or playing the demo -- but you don't have a clue yet.” – Soultron

 

Characters:

 

“I love the epic outfits, they truly are epic.  Pink glowing Kaori is awesome.” – Vix

“The voice work in the game is done very well, although you'll probably want to turn down everything else in the sound options to really hear your rider.” – CharmyDweeng

 

Music:

 

“The custom soundtrack remixing is a feature that means even if the outstanding soundtrack that's included isn't for you -- or simply if you want to rock out to SSX tracks of yesteryear -- you can do it and you also don't feel like you're sacrificing the in-game remixing because it happens no matter what music is being played now. I'm really enjoying the included soundtrack, however, because I feel like it does a great job of curating and presenting a lot of what's hot in genres always used in SSX: Electronica, drum and bass, indie rock, and more.” – Soultron

 

Gear:

“My favorite new addition to the game is the wingsuit. It feels so comfortable, so natural, and it's amazingly fun. It really shines on one of my favorite drops in the game is called Majestic on Patagonia where you LITERALLY use the wingsuit to fly straight down the course for 30 seconds at a time. It's insane and zany, and allows so many different paths you can take.” – CharmyDweeng

“I thought the wingsuit/ice axe/etc were just going to be another lame gaming gimmick but lo and behold I find myself playing gravity Deadly Descent a lot. I love the wingsuit. The headlamp/darkness is crazy hard but crazy. I'm still a bit mixed on the reverse camera avalanche run, it's disorienting but still fun. Takes a bit to get used to.” – Vix

 

The Verdict:

 

“I can safely say that SSX is back, baby, SSX is a huge game, and the Welcome Back that this series has needed for a long time. I think this game will be one people will talk about for a long time and if you haven't played it, you owe yourself a favor and pick this up.” – Gondee

“If you were like me playing SSX's of decades past, waiting and hoping that one day you'd get a new but familiar experience to master again, your wait is over. I cannot get enough.” – CharmyDweeng

“I've experienced extreme speeds as I faced off against old and new faces, tricked my scores to new heights never seen in past games, and even fought my way through avalanches, rocks and thin air in the hopes of surviving the new tracks introduced to the game. It's back! It's all back!” – Kav

“After playing the game all weekend long, I can honestly say that SSX is back and back in all its former glory. I was wary at first.  I didn't like the idea of deadly descents and dying in SSX.  But once I had a run down one of the DD's, I was grinning ear to ear and I wanted to run it again.  I was worried they wouldn't feel like SSX but they feel like they were made for SSX.” – Vix

“I can safely say that this is my favorite SSX game. Even as someone who still owns and plays SSX3. Of all the next-gen reboots and sequels I've played, SSX seems the most evolved in so many different aspects: from its custom soundtrack remixing, its new physics engine, its multiplayer modes, menus and user interface, and lastly, the addition of Survive It gameplay.” – Soultron

“I don’t think there is a word to describe just how amazing this game it. It has gone above and beyond my wildest expectations. I never thought I would be getting an SSX game that would be this massive and this successful. I didn’t expect the development team at EA to put so much heart and hard work into this old franchise. And I never expected to be a little, teeny-tiny part of it and I thank EA Canada for that. This was just over the top, insane, adrenaline rushing, blood pumping, game of the year. SSX 2012 is the epitome of absolute awesomeness. So would I recommend this game to friend? Oh hells yes ;)” – SickOne
 

*Special thanks to former EA Community Manager Sk88z for his work in making this happen