The sequel to what was voted ‘Best Arcade Game of 2009’ by its community has finally arrived. Trials Evolution is here, but can it live up to the high expectations set by its predecessor? Or does it pale in comparison?
For those not familiar with the series, Trials is a motocross stunt game where the player must traverse a number of tracks filled with obstacles that gradually increase in difficulty the further you progress. The core mechanics are virtually identical; nothing much has changed control-wise, and you’ll still use a combination of acceleration, braking and leaning to make your way from the start to finish. However this is where the similarities end, because Trials Evolution feels like a completely different game
Let’s start by saying that Trials Evolution surpasses its prequel in almost every aspect, it’s like Trials HD was injected with steroids for three years and then released to the public. The first noticeable upgrade for Trials Evolution is the graphics. This is quite noticeable on the tracks themselves which have a lot more variety and detail compared to its predecessor. This has all been upgraded while still maintaining a smooth and constant frame rate that doesn’t seem to skip a beat. The only downside is that sometimes there can be too much clutter; at times, such as when you’ve gone over a huge jump, you won’t be sure where exactly your bike will be landing as it’s hard to tell what an obstacle is or if it’s just part of the background. This is a minor gripe, however as it doesn’t occur often and is quickly overcome by repeating the track once more.
It appears the tracks themselves have had a lot more thought put into their design and it’s really paid off. The formula for the first game seemed to be that each level was a series of difficult obstacles, one after another. While this was fun and enjoyable and provided a challenge, it lacked flow. Trials evolution has found the perfect balance here and the result is a much more enjoyable experience.
Where this game truly excels is its emphasis on community and multiplayer. When going through a track you’ll notice a series of white dots with your friend’s names as their header. These represent their best times in real time. The goal here is quite obvious, beat your friend’s best times and brag like hell about it!
Players even have a cool new feature to play with. The track builder allows players to create and share their own ideas with the rest of the XBOX Live community, extending the playability of this new title almost endlessly.
Trials evolution is easily worth the 1200 Microsoft point’s investment and you’ll definitely receive more than your money’s worth here. There are many hours of entertainment and challenge for gamers of all levels and everyone will enjoy the look and feel. Grab yourself a copy today.