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Wipeout 3 Review


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On 12/11/2012 at 07:53 AM by Nick DiMola

I feel as if a huge opportunity has been missed.
RECOMMENDATION:

Not recommended.

I’m aware that this is going to sound insane, but I was actually excited to give Wipeout 3 a whirl, despite being a licensed game for one of the more ridiculous shows on television. Inherently the show’s content lends itself to interesting 3D obstacle-based platforming, but more importantly, developer Behavior Interactive is responsible for Doritos Crash Course, which on the surface bears many similarities. Though free and sponsored by Doritos, the game took some serious cues from Donkey Kong Country and made for one of the more interesting platforming experiences to be released in a long while. Unfortunately, Wipeout 3 doesn’t channel that energy and instead provides an occasionally sloppy, mostly boring, licensed game.

While Wipeout 3 occurs in 3D space, Behavior has simplified the experience down to a 2D plane of control. There’s no ability to maneuver your character off of the obstacle course and everything boils down to jumping or running at the right time. As you rush down the course, you’ll attempt to collect a set of 10 rings, which count toward a trophy (read: achievement), but are largely unimportant.

The primary goal is to complete the course in the quickest time possible. Getting knocked by the impediments will definitely slow you down, but if you’re ultimately knocked off the course, you’ll have a preset amount of time tacked on to your running total. Seemingly, if you manage to complete the course, you’re allowed to move on to the next round, but that's unlikely to pose a problem unless you're a total video game dunce.

Given the ease of traversal, most of your energies are directed toward achieving all of the optional objectives to receive a trophy, or posting the quickest possible time through any given course. Most of the time this involves rushing forward at full barrel and taking every single jump without hesitation. Unfortunately, there’s no means to post these scores to a leaderboard to determine if you’re actually better than anyone else out there, taking away some of the potential fun.

With no consequences for falling off the course, there’s very little motivation to actually try. In the end, with minimal effort, it’s likely that you’ll finish the course and progress onward. This differs significantly from the more gamer-friendly/focused Doritos Crash Course, which specifically required precision movements and planned pathways through each course.

Making things worse are the sometimes spotty controls. In a number of instances, I couldn’t hold forward and expect to move in that direction, instead my character would randomly oscillate between backpedaling and moving forward. This essentially led to my demise, forcing me to pick up at the last checkpoint.

It’s hard to say who the market for Wipeout 3 is exactly, but clearly it could’ve been a much better experience. Even in the constraints of 2D, interesting platforming segments and tight controls could’ve brought this into a league of its own. Instead we’re left with an unsatisfying and unchallenging licensed game that next to no one will have any interest in picking up. Though inoffensive, Wipeout 3 is the type of drivel that all gaming enthusiasts should avoid, regardless of Behavior’s past success.

Review Policy

In our reviews, we'll try not to bore you with minutiae of a game. Instead, we'll outline what makes the game good or bad, and focus on telling you whether or not it is worth your time as opposed to what button makes you jump.

We use a five-star rating system with intervals of .5. Below is an outline of what each score generally means:


All games that receive this score are standout games in their genre. All players should seek a way to play this game. While the score doesn't equate to perfection, it's the best any game could conceivably do.


These are above-average games that most players should consider purchasing. Nearly everyone will enjoy the game and given the proper audience, some may even love these games.


This is our middle-of-the-road ranking. Titles that receive three stars may not make a strong impression on the reviewer in either direction. These games may have some faults and some strong points but they average out to be a modest title that is at least worthy of rental for most.


Games that are awarded two stars are below average titles. Good ideas may be present, but execution is poor and many issues hinder the experience.


Though functional, a game that receives this score has major issues. There are little to no redeeming qualities and should be avoided by nearly all players.


A game that gets this score is fundamentally broken and should be avoided by everyone.


 

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