Split/Second: A Video Game Review

Split/Second: Or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bombs Strategically Placed Around the Racetrack

May 18, 2010, might as well be called Red Deadmageddon. On this date, Red Dead Redemption was released and sold three copies for every living person on the planet. Unfortunately, two other great games were released the same day. Now, if three great movies are released on DVD on the same day, there are a few things that fans might do. They might buy them both today, or pick one up in a week or so. Video games are different for two very big reasons. One, games cost $60, and it is really hard to buy two in a week. Two, games take more than two hours to play. Red Dead clocked in at over 40 hours. That is a regular work week. I have already discussed one of the casualties of Red Deadmageddon, the criminally underplayed Alan Wake. Today, I would like to discuss the other.

Split/Second is a racing game with some silly ideas about spelling, but some terrific ideas about gameplay. The basic premise is this: drive your car in a race and blow up the track to wreck the cars in front of you. Simple. But, oh, so much fun. What this accomplishes is a marvelous blend of action movie chase scene and legitimate race. Think any shitty Michael Bay movie crossed with Truth in 24 (which is a great documentary available for free from iTunes). Basically, you blow up the track as you race around it. This does two things. It messes with the other drivers and sometimes changes the track itself. Actually, I lied. It also puts a big goofy smile on your face. There is something satisfying about sending the air traffic control tower crashing into the cars in front of you during a race. It just makes you feel warm all over.

I could get into the sense of scale this game brings, which is massive, or I could mention the great race mechanics, they’re great. I could expound on the extra modes (especially the one that evokes the LA River chase from T2). I could run to find my thesaurus. I could talk about the multiplayer. Well, no I can’t; I didn’t get a chance to play it. I can discuss the graphics, sound, gameplay, or anything else you talk about in a racing game, but, instead, I’ll just say, you can crash an aircraft carrier into a pier, jump onto the deck of the freakin’ aircraft carrier, dodge planes falling into the ocean, and jump back off to win a race. Try doing that in Gran Turismo.

Four stupid grins out of five.




Last modified on Friday, 21 June 2013 01:34

Ben Rhodes, Fanbase Press Senior Contributor

Favorite Book:  Cryptonomicon
Favorite MovieYoung Frankenstein
Favorite Absolutely Everything:  Monty Python

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