So I got this game a few days ago and have been thrashing on it for quite a few hours now, and my impressions of it are very good indeed. The first thing that struck me about the game was that it was completely undemanding, and yet challenging, leaving you with a deep satisfaction - mainly due to the fact that the game is just fun. Fun in the pure meaning of the word. It's one of those games you can just pick up and play for half an hour and just have fun. However, there's also this other aspect to the game which will draw you in over time. An aspect that's very in-depth and logical.
The main part of the game is the world tour allowing you to go all over the world to different countries ranging from Italy to America to New Zealand - over all sorts of different terrains - from grass, to mud, to sand, concrete and more. This mode has you going from track to track simultaneously within the engine category - be it the begining D class engines, slwly building up the extremely fast A and S class engines. As it is, the game slowly gets more and more challenging as you move higher up the ranks and higher up the engine categorys. Before you can start your world tour, you have to create your vehicle. This is no simple creation ranging from a few choice parts and putting them together. The entire bike can be changed and modified ranging from the suspension, bars, wheels, tires, hubs, fans, rests, seat, design, aesthetic cosmetics and everything else. The whole bike has to be made from scratch. On the initial start-up your choice is limited to what you can have - all the different pieces have different effects on how your vehicle performs in the different areas - whether it's tricks, handling, boost, speed, acceleration, etc. As you make your way through the world tour, you unlock even more parts for the vehicle creations and open up new garage slots allowing you to make more and more bikes to fit your personal style of play. When all the pieces are garnered together, there are over 60,000 different possibilities for bikes to make - leaving you with all sorts of different choices.
The gameplay is pretty simple, but not so simple so as to make the game get boring. The handling feels right, and of course your different aspects created on your bike make a big difference to how it works. Similar to SSX from the Playstation 2, you drive around do tricks, land them and get boost. Boost allows you to drive super fast on straights, and getting more boost allows you to do super tricks. The different modes such as freestyle allow you to go around the track over and over again until your fuel levels run out trying to get as many points as possible from doing the tricks. This is all relative, and makes the game extremely fun and something you won't get bored of easily as the number of different trick combinations amount into the thousands. The replay value is also there, getting your times better and better on each track, trying to finish higher than you previously did - and the 100 player online mode is going to be unreal. Tournaments online driving along dirt tracks on all terrain vehicles just seems outrageously fun to me - and the game is.
Really, I can't find any flaws with it at all. The graphics are some of the best yet - with huge ranges of landscape looking over beautiful countryside and vast moutainous regions as you jump hundreds of feet in the air over cliff edges doing absurd tricks. The gameplay is challenging but fun, and the whole thing just feels right. I can't recommend this game highly enough.