I’m not one for off-road racing and other X-games related sports. I’m also unaware of who Jeremy McGrath is and just why he is popular. With that in mind however I was able to step into Jeremy McGrath’s Offroad with an open mind. An arcade like off-road racing game that offers a range of different vehicles and tracks for a low price? Sounds like a good deal on the surface. After stepping into the driving seat and taking control of my vehicle I have to ask, is Jeremy McGrath’s Offroad any good?
It might be wrong for me to say this but when I hear about games that are available on the marketplace, I always get a bit concerned about the quality of the final product. With the games you find on the marketplace having less budget then most games, it’s a fair concern. Of course many show promise and even exceed at offering the player a great experience. Jeremy McGrath’s Offroad however is one that I was right to be concerned about.
On the surface it’s clear to see just what the developer, 2XL Games was trying to achieve. An arcade like racing game that was a nod to the classic games of yesterday. With that said however this game fails to even live up to the same level of quality that games such as ‘Colin McRae Rally’ gave us on Play Station One. Featuring horrible controls, menus, visuals and just poor design, Jeremy McGrath’s Offroad is a less then satisfying experience. The biggest complaint I have for this game is the handling and controls. When a game gives you a range of ‘useful’ hints about how to improve your driving but in reality only requires you to hold down the acceleration, you know there is a problem.
Following on from that your quickly notice a lack of polish to the game. It promises ‘crisp 1080p high-definition graphics’ running at a smooth 60FPS. Now I will acknowledge that the game does run very well with next to no frame rate drops, long load times or drops in textures during any point of the games running time. In opposite to this the graphic level of the game is just awful. It’s cheap with a lack of finish anywhere. That said, graphics are not everything and given it runs smooth on the PS3 I can forgive it for the poor textures. Sound is a plus however and never affects the performance of the game.
Technical aspects aside, the gameplay is the heart of Jeremy McGrath’s Offroad and as I’ve already expressed, the controls are far from prefect. In contrast to what is stated the game only offers five or so tracks and fewer game modes. Vehicles feel no different and once you add a few upgrades your be winning each race without fail. If any fun at the start you will soon find yourself putting the controller down and walking away as the game becomes a tedious and repetitive process. It was just painful to play after about two hours.
I’ll give Jeremy McGrath the benefit of the doubt here and express that I did enjoy my first hour with the game, if a bit slow, but quickly found myself hating it. In today’s current market I fail to understand why games of this natural are still be made. Maybe I’m unable to see the full appeal of such a game or maybe this is just a missed opportunity. Regardless, Jeremy McGrath’s Offroad offers only a small amount of enjoyment and very quickly leads to disappointment and boredom. Also if anyone finds the option to make Jeremy McGrath shut up during the menus then that would be great.
If I can offer any words that may impact your buying habits, then let it be to avoid this game at the expense of saving your money. Trust me. Your bank will love you.