A typical BMX sports game with a unique premise akin to Running Man.
If you're madly in love with game series that are in line with such titles as Tony Hawk's Pro Skater, this game is no exception. In fact, it just about follows the collect-this-and-that-and-earn-points-to-progress rule to a tee. But the one thing that makes this game stand out in the single player mode, is the convoluted storyline, reminiscent of The Running Man.
You're a pro BMX rider, age 18, Jason Hayes, starting out and winning his first competition in 2002. Meanwhile, in the future, where extreme sports are forbidden, there exists a game show called Toxic Grind, meant to kill off those who still continue to ride such 'extreme' contraptions, whilst providing entertainment. The host, Baron von Blass, has managed to kill off most of the underground resistance through the show, and is running out of fresh meat. Using an unstable, stolen time machine, he reaches back to 2002, and notices Hayes winning his first competition. He kidnaps him through the machine, bringing him to the year 2090, to ride for his life on Toxic Grind.
Graphically, this game is nothing spectacular, but everything is clear, and the lighting effects do no wrong where the XBox is concerned. Animations are smooth for the most part, but will slow down slightly on more intensive areas to render. They are few and far between, so it's no big deal.
The music is nothing special, but it has a bit of a Grunge flair, considering that it came out in 2002. It's a bit jarring at first, perhaps, but you'll soon get used to it. If you can't, the game will also allow you to use your own custom soundtrack, from whatever discs you might've ripped to the XBox hard drive.
The gameplay consists of you biking around and tricking off things, earning massive amounts of points, collecting letters to spell out 'BLASS', and doing things specific to missions, such as destroying a set number of cameras or freeing hostages. In between missions are cutscenes, told through comic book styled artwork, which is interesting. In them, however, is some mostly decent voice acting, but questionable in some parts. It's not a really bad kind of cheese, however. The whole time you're on the show, there is a timer, but it is not really in the form of numbers onscreen. Rather, a microid that had been injected into your body is slowly pumping you full of toxin. Obviously you'll die if it gets too high, so you must keep yourself amped up by performing tricks. Doing so suspends the microid's pumping, and even eliminates toxins. Now, if Tony Hawk's Pro Skater did this since the first game, it'd be way too easy to complete every mission. Thankfully, if you are in for a mostly unforgiving challenge, I commend you to play this game. And you can think again if you are going to look anything up on GameFaqs. You are on your own here.
Back in the day, me and everyone else would say that this is complete and total garbage. However, this is a pretty alright bargain title now; very cheap since it was so unwanted, and actually pretty good if it's your first foray into button mashing BMX games. If it isn't, it will offer not much else new to the table, besides the silly storyline. Rental is not an option anymore, so I say go for it.Read full review