If it weren’t for this pesky job, paying bills, and my general attachment to humanity, there is a very good chance that I would have disappeared from the world by now, only occasionally surfacing to pick up a case of energy drinks and Slim Jims, as I repeatedly raced the same tracks in SSX over and over again with the single-minded goal of dominating my friends.
When SSX was released back in February the addiction began. Many people (ourselves included) immediately fell in love with it and were drawn in not just by its gameplay, but its aggressively addictive multiplayer options that had you racing head-to-head against your online friends’ ghost data. Each time you fired it up, you could see them on the leader board, their names above yours. Silently taunting you.
There was a flaw in this though. Shy of you being a video game wunderkind, able to pick up any game and instantly crush anyone at anything (and therefore probably making bitter enemies out of good friends everywhere you went), then you needed to race and re-race the same course again and again. Topping your friends and placing well in global events is a matter of repetition. There are always exceptions, but for most of us it requires playing the same run repeatedly until we have it down, know where everything is, and knowing how to keep the score rising. So for a game like that, a new DLC offering fresh new courses is not just welcome, it is a must.
SSX is (in our humble opinion) the best sports game of the year, and adding more content to it is an obvious plus. If anything, it is overdue. If you are one of the tens of thousands that still play this game fanatically, this is a no brainer. But for those on the fence, for those that are still thinking about buying the game, or have played it but put it aside, is it worth the money? Absolutely.
The DLC comes in three flavors: the “SSX Classic Characters Pack” for $5.99, the “Mt. Eddie Pack” for $5.99, and the “Mt. Eddie & Classic Characters Bundle Pack” for $7.99. Now, we totally understand that maths is hard, but the $7.99 fee for everything is the clear winner here. If for some reason you have the money but morally object to paying it, then the “Mt. Eddie Pack” is the way to go as it is going to give you additional gameplay, while the character pack just adds new characters to an already deep selection pool.
Assuming you go with the full pack, you will receive seven new characters (each with their own clothing options and snowboards), three retro music tracks from previous games (“Top Bomb,” “Gin and Sin,” and “Darkpath” from the game Sledstorm), and the Mt. Eddie featuring nine new drops.
The characters, culled from previous titles, are a decent addition. Since the DLC is not part of the campaign, if you have already maxed out all the other characters, this will offer a bit of progression to strive for. Each character should be familiar to longtime fans of the series, and they each have their own stats to consider. But honestly, the tracks are what you will buy this pack for. The characters are just a nice bonus.
Mt. Eddie itself is incredibly long, with a mixture of trick and race events. Those that played the previous SSX games should feel a nostalgic twinge after they drop in and see that the tone is much more flamboyant and whimsical than in the more realistic-leaning mountains included with the game. The longest of the courses isn’t as long as the old SSX runs, but there are massive drops off cliffs, billboards, giant mouths to jump through, fireworks, and a lot of variety to be had.
While this mountain is heavily “TRICKY” inspired and harkens back to the older SSX titles it is still an expansion for the new SSX game, and it plays like it, but it is also a good blending of the two styles. All nine drops feel sufficiently varied, and yet similar in the sense that they are all part of the same mountain. And all nine should reignite the mania as you attempt to repeatedly murder your besties’ scores over and over again.
One of the biggest gripes that fans had about the new SSX was that it was a departure from the roots of the series. This contingent was mostly won over with the new gameplay, but this DLC is a nice way to bridge the gap between the two.
In terms of value, this DLC is without question worth it. The only question now is when do we get more?
We have two Xbox 360 codes for the “Mt. Eddie & Classic Characters Bundle Pack” to give away! Let us know your favorite SSX maps, new or old (a description is fine if you don’t remember the name), and we will pick two winners at random!
(This game was reviewed on the Xbox 360 on a copy provided by EA)