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Well, now you're here, keep reading! Dooyoo.co.uk = an idea? A dream, which became reality? Or is it just another website? Starting well over a year ago, probably around 18 months ago Dooyoo.co.uk went live, became online and rapidly became one of the most popular online resource sites, full of loads and loads of information in the form of reviews from consumers, Everyday people, unheard of people, suddenly becoming famous to this online community based site – through their opinion style, through their thoughts and viewpoints. Dooyoo.co.uk is quite frankly. Superb. I have only been on the site for around 4 months now, and yet I have only written 7 opinions, I should be making that figure up to ten by this evening, hopefully! I’m still relatively new, but I have done my fair share of rating and reading of other people’s reviews. I just don’t know what to say about them sometimes, so I rarely comment – each to their own though, you don’t have to have the same writing style or approach to dooyoo.co.uk as long as you try and make your opinions as good as possible, which is what I try to do always. To write an opinion you have to sign up, and that doesn’t take very long – you could be putting your mind across to the whole world in less than hours, on nearly every single subject you’d like to. Games – any game, any console, modern or old, you can write about it! Sports – football, golf, anything – write about it! Speakers corner, modern issues, televisions, all sorts of products – anything at all, just check the product category listing on the left bar on the homepage. Alternatively use a search to find what you want to write about. That’s how I found this opinion place! PAYMENT WOOHOO! Well, you wouldn’t be here if they didn’t pay you, but don’t go getting too excited, don’t give up your day job, this is no
t fantastic pay, but depending on how good your opinions are, and how many people know about you, will affect the amount of money you will make. 100 miles an op, 50miles a read, 1000miles a crown, of which I have 3!! The better the opinion, the more the reads, but to get yourself known you are going to have to do a lot of rating and reading of other members, this will allow them to see you are an active member and will give you the chance to learn from their ops, and understand how to write good opinions. I haven’t claimed any money, I don’t even have half the amount I need for the 55,000 miles cash in, but I will continue to write, slowly but surely and hopefully I will achieve the amount of money needed and somehow know a lot more from it – learning from others who know about products and services that you might be interested in. I have opinions on games, gaming related products and some other ‘interesting’ topics. Only 7 opinions so far, this is the 8th, I hope you’ve learned from it anyway. DO THE FOLLOWING: (please try to do this!!) Remember not to swear or purposely offend anyone. If an opinion becomes stuck on the front page, as I have seen happen once, then do not make loads of comments that do not relate to that opinion, in the comment place. This will not bear will for your future here. Dooyoo.co.uk is your site. You make the opinions and therefore the content is yours, and every member’s here, but remember that it would not be possible without the creators – effectively your bosses, so don’t be out of order to them. Report acts of bullying on the site, it can happen online in text form just as well as physically or verbally, believe me, bullying may happen here and does happen in text form. Don’t be afraid to say your mind, say what you personally feel about what you are writing about and be funny or humorous! Attempt to make you
r opinions as exciting and interestingly as possible, but don’t go over the top, unless you want to!! :-) Profiles: Write yourself a profile if you want to do so, it may help members gain a better perspective of what kind of person you are, but try to let your opinions tell of who you are. Be as good as you can, do what you can and have a great time writing opinions here. Hopefully you’ll find this useful & hopefully you’ll leave a comment and write something of your own today! ICEFIRE!!!!!!
The PS2 launch was probably the biggest games console launch in history. At launch there was over 30 games available with the PS2. This was part of Sony's plan and their policy of quantity and choice among games in contrast to Nintendo's quality only screening. Of course most of these launch games turned out to be less than wonderful but a dark horse that really shined was a SSX. This really was a dark horse, vying for sales alongside established games like Tekken Tag Tournament and Ridge Racer V. SSX simply blew the competition off the snow and reached the number one sales spot sometime after the launch. Not bad for a little known or hyped title, and it has been selling well ever since. Along with Timesplitters, SSX was hailed as one of the great launch games and rightly so. SSX is the first extreme sport game from a special division of EA sports, EA Big. EA Big have excelled themselves in every way possible to make SSX one of the best games available on the PS2. SSX stands for Snowboard Super Cross in case you were wondering and is basically a futuristic and slightly mad snowboarding competition. This is where SSX's strengths come from and is why it has succeeded in making a cracking game out of the snowboarding genres where other games have failed. SSX is not a snowboarding sim. It is distinctly arcade in style without being too far-fetched or totally unrealistic. The tracks are probably the most important thing in a game like this, as they have to be varied, well-designed and fun to play. To say the levels are varied would be an understatement as they range from almost typical ski slopes to giant pinball-like tracks. An easy trap to fall into would have been to design the levels more realistically as this would have marred the game in terms of graphics. The level design is excellent as each track has faster routes, big and small jumps, areas where jump-to-grind combos are available and plenty of hidden shortcuts. The lev
el design is very wide as it will let you explore the surrounding landscape to the track instead of funnelling you down a pre-chosen route, in fact in some levels the game actively encourages you to leave the track by jumping over fences and weaving through trees. At the beginning of each race/stunt event the camera pans around the track and the stands to show you the great lengths that the developers have gone to in order to present as much eye-candy to the gamer as possible. The tracks are beautifully made and detailed. The overall look of the game is bright and colourful as rather than sticking with the look of traditional ski slopes SSX has gone in favour of brightly coloured boards, metal pipes and stands as well as a variety of coloured stripes on the track. This helps to give a fun arcade feel to the game and makes it a joy to watch and play. The characters are also beautifully designed and colourful and represent a full spectrum of likely snowboarders. A neat touch is the ability to win nice new outfits for the boarders as you progress through the game, which helps in customizing the characters to your personal taste. The boarders look extremely realistic in the game as each has a slightly different stance and sways with the turning of the board as it carves through the snow. The movements of the characters are smooth and fluid when performing tricks with no jagged edges or rigid movement in sight. This compliments the graphical genius of this game as no jagged edges, pop-up or slow down is evident anywhere in SSX. The game itself has two main modes, world circuit and single event. The two main events in each mode are Race and Showoff. Race is as it sounds, a hectic dash to the end of the track. Showoff is a trick contest involving huge air and massive combos if you want to continue to the next stage of the competition. Both of these modes are extremely fun and in addition there is also a freeride mode and a beginners tuition le
sson. There are 7 tracks in all plus one bonus track but only one track is available at the start of the game. The other venues are earned by getting a bronze, silver or gold medal in the World Circuit mode. Also as you progress through the game with a character you unlock better boards and can enhance the characters stats, which consist of speed, tricks, edging and stability. Playing SSX is a pure joy as it is an incredibly fast game. The feeling you get after pulling of a ‘sick’ combo is one of the best experiences the PS2 has to offer. SSX is a fiercely addictive game as well. The single player mode is comprehensive and thorough and the two-player mode is excellent. There’s nothing like spraying snow in your friend’s face I can tell you. There are some nice extra features in SSX such as the adrenaline meter that fills up with the number of cool tricks you perform and can be used in a form of speed boost. Also each character has a trick book that can be completed, which adds a bit more life to the game if you are that way inclined. SSX also makes good use of the PS2’s sound with its banging soundtrack and amazing voices that manage to sound like the snowboarders without becoming too annoying. SSX is currently one of the best games available for the PS2 and offers the most thrills in any game. SSX is beautifully designed, fun to play, very easy on the eye and furiously fast and addictive. What more could you ask for?
Smoking. Why do we smoke? I don’t smoke, but that doesn’t make me any better than someone who does choose to smoke, although I would assume that all being well, I’d live longer, lead a healthier life than someone who does smoke. There are those who smoke, those who don’t and those who only smoke at social events and in public houses, often to try and fit in with the rest of the crowd. Why do people still choose to ignore the warnings and continue with this ‘filthy’ habit? There are groups of people that want you to smoke, and groups that don’t. In my life I’ve often walked past a group of youngsters, no more than around 13 years of age – smoking and pressuring one of the group members that haven’t yet succumbed to the cancer drug, and making him smoke, something that could ruin his/her life. Why do they do this? Is it so they don’t feel uncomfortable with a ‘non smoker’ hanging around with them, supposedly thinking he’s better than them? Smoking is no longer cool. When cigarettes first really came into their own, the effects of smoking were not yet fully known, or at least couldn’t be proven by those with sceptical eyes, and many people smoked, it was a fashion accessory, something to do, something to waste your money upon, and ignorance was shared between the world, but not so now. People know the dangers, but they will continue smoking, they won’t listen to anyone else’s viewpoint – it’s they’re decision, or is it? Nicotine is the drug found in tobacco, which makes smokers become addicted to smoking, it’s one of the most addictive drugs freely available and it won’t let you quit without a fight – giving up smoking is one of the hardest things to give up in life, I have to give respect to those who at least attempt to give up, and more so to those who do and succeed, going on to live a healthier, ric
her and more prosperous life. You may not want to give up, could that just be the nicotine talking? I have friends that smoke, and they’re many smokers who are decent people, and in a way that makes it harder for me and others who don’t smoke – they’re intelligent, but it’s just hard to watch them wasting their money and more importantly, their lives, away. You see some right scruffy looking characters, notably tramps, who smoke, drink and I have no sympathy for them – they beg all day, probably get around £30 a day from the charity or stupidity of passers by, (sorry, ‘ignorance’ would be a more polite word), and then what do these beggars do? Spend on cigs and alcohol. They’re the lowest end of society in this country, they’re effectively death walking. It’s a shame to see a human being, someone of the same species as myself, come to this. I suppose it’s our fault as much as theirs. The government don’t want you to quit. Cigarette taxation brings in so much money for the government – only a small percentage of this money is spent on treatment for illness and disease brought from smoking, so smokers are keeping the government happy, but there must be another way. In some countries though, I cannot remember which, but there was a news article about it recently, there government was actively encouraging people to smoke, as it brought in so much money for them through the tax on a ‘packet of fags’. Immoral, but effective – what is the world coming too. So you smoke, you’ve read my thoughts and you think I’m a stuck up non-smoker who can’t stand the sight of you. You’re wrong, you may have a strong mind, but just not at the time you started smoking – is there really anyone who wants to have a premature death and serious health problems in life? Some people enjoy smoking. This I find hard to accept, and I don’
;t like the way these people broadcast their enjoyment of the addiction, it could influence others, but if someone does not want to give up, what can you do? Nobody has the right to dictate what another person does in life & smoking is legal, for those 16 and over 16, I will never smoke, I know the risk. I hear of an old lady, around 80 years + I would say, she’s got 3 days to live – she’s suffering so much, I can even hear her coughing next door, she smoked, this is not the way to die. The thing that troubles me is that her granddaughter and grandson in law whom she lives with can see the pain she’s going through, and yet they do not even think about giving up smoking – they have a young daughter, she’s having to inhale everything, they’ll no doubt suffer from something, but it’s just not my place to say give up smoking. I could try, asking ‘why do you smoke?’ and see what happens, but I just don’t think it’d have any effect. Whether you smoke or you don’t, you have a choice. Everyone has a mind, some people are mentally stronger than others, some people will not be affected by someone else’s pressurising, some will. Smoking is foul disgusting and has an awful aroma, it’s a filthy habit that I would not tolerate in my home, but the people that smoke - most people that smoke are good honest people. I have friends that smoke. I have friends that don’t. We’re not all perfect - in fact if there were a perfect person, we’d know about it. You pay your money & you buy a packet of cigarettes – just as you usually do, but just think every time you spend out on something that will kill you. Think. Thanks. I hope I have not offended anyone. ICEFIRE.
Well, well, well, another PS2 game ported from the Dreamcast. Not to worry though because like Crazy taxi, Fur Fighters is a very good game in its own right. I must say that when I first saw this game on the shelf I was not convinced however it has grown on me over time. Maybe it’s the comedy or the cute characters I just don’t know but this game seemed to wriggle its way firmly to the top of my PS2 collection and stay there for a considerable time. Fur Fighters, despite looking fairly childish, is not a kid’s game. It has a lot of game play with many expansive levels and quite a few tricky parts chucked in to infuriate the player. It is involving and fun to play but can become a bit repetitive at some points during the game. Fur Fighter is predominantly a 1 player experience with a multi-player tagged on as a well worthy extra. The one player game starts of being fairly easy with a nice tutorial at the beginning to allow you to get to grips with the fairly tricky control system. This can be changed to suit the player but the standard set-up becomes mastered after a few hours game play. The story is set with a nice introduction scene at the beginning of the game. The Evil General Viggo, a white cat, is hell bent on World Domination and captures the Fur Fighter’s family’s, Mothers, Brothers, Sisters and all, the evil swine. You are then cast in to the role of the six remaining Fur Fighters as you band together to save all the baby Fur Fighters and their parents, with a twist of course. In each sub-level there are a number of babies to be saved however each type of baby can only be rescued by its corresponding Brother/Sister. In the same way, each boss is one of the Fur Fighters parents that has been mutated into an evil robotic being and can only be saved if it is defeated by its offspring Fur Fighter. This method of play combined with different challenges that are easier with certain characters all
ows, no orders you to use the strengths of each of the Fur Fighters accordingly. An example of this is a stage where you have to go on top of a train and jump and avoid bars and signs as you traverse on the train. This can prove annoyingly difficult unless you backtrack to get the tiny Firefox Chang who can just stand on the train and watch the bars just go above his head. There are six Fur Fighters that can be used throughout the game to rescue other Fur Fighters and progress through the game. The characters look very cute due to the cell shading effect used throughout the game to give it a comic book shine. The characters all have different abilities, strengths, weaknesses, looks and even different accents. The characters are all fairly loveable and at times comic. Not much time was spent with Lip-Sync on this game but it all adds to the humour. The Fur Fighters are lead and guided through the levels by a mysterious ghost of a Walrus and encounter various friendly characters along the way from Beavers to Army Fitness instructors. General Viggo, the evil cat, has an army of stupid bears, which are just that, in an attempt to halt your progress. The levels are very varied as are the boss fights and the challenges and puzzles strewn throughout the game range from the obvious to a mastermind level of lateral thinking. Fur Fighters is an immense game, especially if you are one of those people who can’t leave a level without collecting every gold token, discovering every cheat and secret and rescuing all the babies. Speaking of cheats, these are gained through the completion of sub games littered around. Examples are scoring 3 out of 5 basketball shots. Other diversions from the main game involve being a flea on one of the Fur Fighter’s bodies and exterminating a number of blood sucking parasites-nice. The Fur Fighters are proficient in a vast number of deadly weapons with which to shoot the fluff, not blood, ou
t of the enemy. The weapon range is good with my favourite being the Plasma Gun. Only when you start to get on to harder levels do you begin to realise that the Al of the enemies is actually quite advanced. Fire a rocket and the stupid bears will attempt to dodge it. Evil peacocks will be strategically positioned with their own rocket launchers forcing you to either do a lot of strafing or to find another route. There are lots of welcome breaks from the fast and frantic shooting, mainly in the form of weird and humorous cut scenes, my favourite of which involves a massive blow up gorilla! The multi-player deathmatch is much like many others and is best played in first person perspective unlike the one player adventure, which is played in third person perspective. Although the fun of fluffing your friend is slightly diminished by the lack of gore, the multi-player mode is still good fun. So if Furry animals, big guns, inflatable gorillas and somewhat zany game play are your things then fur Fighters is the game for you. If however you prefer more ‘mature’ games than I feel sorry for you as you will be missing out on a class piece of entertainment. Thanks for reading.
Golf. The mere mention of the word either has you thinking, "Hmm, a round of golf does sound appealing" or "Argh, Golf, what a poor excuse for a sport" depending on which side of the fence you are. Before I start I must say that I do not consider myself to be a true golfer, merely some one who sometimes partakes of a game and occasionally enjoys it. Golf is an old sport that is fairly steeped in heritage and tradition and thus has a few stringent rules and regulations. Golf on a base level, involves whacking a ball with a club, which sounds fairly promising to me. Due to the age of the sport golfing can seem really strange to the uninitiated i.e. me. There are lots of rules to adhere to and this may be the reason why golf seems to be a strange sport to people not used to it. Firstly, golf is probably best classed as a gentleman's sport due to the strange clothing that is mandatory golf wear. Most golf courses require you to be smartly dressed, i.e. collared shirts, trousers and tailored shorts. I myself do not agree with these codes as they are often abused. The other day I witnessed an older member having a go at a couple of youngsters for having slightly un-tucked shirts and black socks instead of white. This really annoys me as this is the kind of stupid attitude that has left golf stuck in a rut as far as young people's interest in the sport goes. Golf is often not considered to be a sport by some and I can understand this. Often, the strict rules and people telling you how to swing can often take the life and joy out of a game of golf. Some people just want a nice fun round of golf but this is nigh impossible at some clubs due to the attitude of other members. To say I dislike this side of golf is an understatement. I absolutely can't stand the snobbish, this is how to play, and you must wear these clothes, approach to golf. What really frustrates me about golf is they way that p
eople say that the reputation that golfing gains is unjust. This is un-true; as long as these attitudes remain in golf clubs then people will not be attracted to the sport. No amount of Tiger Woods will be able to rekindle a youth interest in golfing unless some of these golfers with the elitist attitudes try and be nicer to young golfers. I agree that some dress code and code of conduct is necessary but people's attitudes in and around golf need to be brought in to the 21st century. Right down to the game itself. One famous quote regarding golf is "The best way to spoil a nice walk" or something along those lines. This is quite typical of the feeling that golf gives you. One time you can have a really good round and come away marvelling at your skills and the next day you fell like snapping your clubs due to the terrible way you are playing. Golf can be an incredibly stressful past time. It can also be extremely rewarding although I find it is hardly ever fun in the true sense of the word. It is quite hard to have fun whilst playing golf without breaking one or other of the rules and regulations. The game of golf requires a lot of practice, patience and skill to become proficient at. Also, no matter how good you are you will never completely master the game of golf, every now and then you will play a terrible game. From the outside looking in, golf looks like an easy sport, hit the ball in the hole, simple, or not. To have a basic level of competence at golf requires practice and possibly lessons. Once a person has experienced this they will either leave the sport through lack of interest or be hooked on it. Playing golf can be a costly sport. Adult membership of golf clubs can cost nearly £2000 a year and that’s without the purchase of clubs, balls and other golfing necessities. There are a couple of things that only golf can offer as a sport and this is where it redeems itself from
its bad points. No other sport can offer you the feelings that just one hole of golf can e.g. Your tee shot fires near to the trees and doesn't travel very far. You are gutted, annoyed and frustrated and could kick yourself for playing such a terrible shot. Next shot you play a stunner. The ball curls around the trees and bounces twice before rolling on to the green, sheer elation is felt. The other thing that golf occasionally offers is a leisurely walk through a nice looking course with sunshine and a cool breeze. Of course a bad round can ruin this totally but the courses themselves look really nice providing you have the time and patience to admire them instead of cursing under you breath. All in all golf is very much a love it or hate it sport and it is down to the individual which reaction the sport gets from them. I still can’t make up my mind whether or not I like and Enjoy the sport, which is weird as I usually love a sport e.g. Football, or hate it e.g. Cricket, what kind of an excuse is that for a sport! :-) Thanks for reading, Ice
Sega used to be the biggest name in home consoles, they took great market chunks away from Nintendo with the Mega Drive being the ultimate 16bit games machine – the Super Nintendo was great too, but the Mega Drive had the greatest sales. Ah, the days of 16bit technology. How it has advanced in such a small space of time! Anyway, Sega had an opening run in with the Master System, a comparable console to the Nintendo entertainment system – similar graphics – same 8bit technology, but Sega’s 16bit monster really was the winner of the 16bit era. Unstoppable at this stage, Sega wouldn’t let the market move on, bringing out ugly add-ons and so forth like the 32X, Mega CD etc. The gaming public didn’t want or need this, and quite frankly Sega messed up – these extras flopped like nobodies business and in 1994/5 the Sega Saturn and Sony PlayStation 32bit games machines arrived onto the scene, but it’s obvious which one was the most successful. 80million unit sales compared to 4million. Says something doesn’t it? Sega had lost a lot of support and fans as gamers ignored the hefty Sega Saturn. It was never as great as the Sony revolutionary console, it did have a few top games, but Sega flopped with the Saturn and debt mounted. Sega needed to recapture something that was once theirs. The N64 came and went, with mediocre sales meaning the PSX or PS1 would never be beaten. But Sega, determined to claw their way back from beneath the huge hole that they effectively dug themselves, was to make resurge and in November of 1998 gamers in Japan went wild for the new 128bit incredible Dreamcast. However many sales records were broken at launch, the Dreamcast started to slow down, with few top titles being released. A disappointing Sega Rally 2 conversion – one of Sega’s flagship titles, and a half decent Virtua Fighter showing, the Dreamcast did take a while to get into it’s stride, which sadly
, eventually, was stopped. The Dreamcast was fished out of the water and crawled up to our shores and launched on October 14th 1999. A fairly good launch line up, fairly decent sales but the advertising – far too obscure hardly did the Dreamcast any favours. Yeah, so the Dreamcast has had some really good games, and although I have not owned one, I have played on them, but I prefer the PlayStation 2. You see, the Dreamcast didn’t have the gaming development support, or the general gaming public support as many people were waiting eagerly for the marvellous PlayStation 2 – and I believe that they refrained from the Dreamcast in favour of Sony’s 128bit console, and this is effectively what ‘killed’ the Dreamcast. Sega have stopped producing it, although you should easily be able to buy one in the UK, it has however sold out completely in Japan. There are more titles being made for it, but it isn’t going to be getting much support outside of Sega’s in-house development teams. Sales figures are always inconclusive, but in the 3 years of life the Dreamcast sold around 7million. Compare this to the 9million PlayStation 2’s already sold, and you’ll see why Sega had to pull the plug as it were. Should you get one then? Well, I would strongly advise the PS2. You may have read my review on it, but if not I can tell you that you have no worries of it ceasing in production. The PlayStation 2 is starting to get some absolutely fantastic games, and it’s now just £269.99 – it’s a games machine and DVD player in one, so I would go for that against the Dreamcast. Now, there is a huge difference in price. The Dreamcast is just £100, although you’d easily find one second hand for about £60. The games are cheaper, with an SRP of £29.99, although again you can find some bargains, with older games selling at less than ten pounds. What has the Dreamcast got that the PS
2 hasn’t? It has lots of games, more than the PlayStation 2 at the moment, and it’s also the world’s first and only online games machine – you can play games online as well as using all of the special Dream Arena internet system and browser disc. The online feature is good, but I don’t know many Dreamcast owners who actually use it regularly. The DC has FOUR control ports, which is a big plus, as you won’t need to buy a multi-tap unlike us PS2 owners – that’s if you have more than 1 friend and a game that has a 2 player + option. The Best games on the Sega machine are probably the following. As I say I have not got one, but I’ve done a spot of research: Metropolis Street Racer – a realistic looking driving game. Virtua Tennis – again, a fun 4 player, realistic tennis game. Shenmue – an RPG style of adventure game with a difference. It looks absolutely stunning I must say – I wouldn’t mind seeing it on the PS2. Soul Calibur – a Tekken rival, looks great and plays very fast indeed. Sonic – everyone loves the Sonic games. This is one of Sega’s best sellers. Crazy Taxi – it’s great on the PS2, but it all started on the Dreamcast. Classic game. Grandia II and Skies of Arcadia are supposed to be the best RPG games. So. You can get a lot for your money, but Sega have flopped yet again with the Dreamcast – losing so much money, they just couldn’t continue and so are now a software (games only) company, developing for the PS2, X Box and Game Cube. It’s your choice as to whether you want a Dreamcast, they’re small and compact with a nice range of peripherals, but if Sega doesn’t care, then why should you? Get a PlayStation 2, but this is still a good machine. So if you have £100 for a games machine? You can't beat the DC.
Crazy Taxi started off life as an incredibly entertaining and fun arcade game and very little has changed since. It has travelled a long, entertaining and thoroughly enjoyable journey through the charred remains of the Dreamcast before making its presence firmly felt on the PS2. Crazy taxi is a candidate for one of the most inventive games ever but the again it is from Sega the undisputed master of weird but excellent games. Crazy Taxi is at heart an arcade game so expect speed, thrills, playability and not just a little bit of a rip-roaringly banging soundtrack to accompany this exercise in criminally insane driving. Arcade style games offer the games developers the most scope in making the game and its odd very unrealistic twists and Crazy taxi is no exception. You are presented at first with the Sega logo appearing on your PS2, which it has to be said, gives you a rather smug and contented feeling. There are 4 taxis altogether to choose from and although this may not sound like much, the way they drive and handle are genuinely different from each other. The outward appearance of the 4 cab drivers immediately gives you a feel of what is to come with a tall lad with a shock of bright green hair hinting at the abject madness of this game. As mentioned before each cab and their drivers have different driving styles and although this seems to be an attempt at varied game-play you will probably find that one of the drivers will suit you better than the others resulting in extended use of that particular character. There are quite a few modes on offer in this game; 2 expansive settings to explore in one of four modes including the traditional arcade mode as well as the slightly strange spectacle that is Crazy Box but more of this later. The two game areas, arcade and original are quite large levels that feel very expansive as they loop round in a large circle so that you never feel blocked in by the cities, they really are quite immense
levels. The level design itself is very good as it enables you to take short cuts in multi-storeys and across rooftops and the like. The level design enables you to explore nearly every part and after extensive playing I have only noticed one slight annoyance in the level design and that is that you cannot jump off one bridge but hey what other game enables you to drive off any bridge let alone all of them. The basic premise of Crazy Taxi is to deliver the customers from A to B, that’s if you want to be boring and not release the full energetic potential of this undeniably good experience. On the journey you can earn tips from the customers in your cab by performing crazy thoughts, drifts and jumping off ramps and rooftops. This is where the fun begins. The potential customers that litter the levels seem to have more money than sense and a strange longing to be scared out of their trousers by insane taxi drivers. By performing a string combo of crazy thoughts, which basically consist of getting as near to another vehicle as possible without hitting it whilst overtaking it at incredible speed, it is possible to rack up over $1000 from one journey. A very large amount of tips are available for jumping over bridges and cruising headlong at a very large lorry only to swerve out of the way at the last minute. Very Crazy I think you’ll agree. The playability and speed of crazy taxi are most definitely its strong points. It is just unbelievably fun to play. It is a blast at a time sort of game as it is easily completed but has an excellent replay value. You will find yourself coming back for more every time I can promise you. The game encourages, teases and mocks you into attempting to beat your already immense high score. The graphics are fairly good with lush bright colours and varied scenery. The only annoyance is the pop-up that is evident when you suddenly hit an artic that just appeared out of nowhere. This can be
incredibly frustrating and is not necessary at all. Crazy taxi is a lazy port from the Dreamcast. Nothing has been altered or improved upon but rest assured that you £300 PS2 is way more than capable of eliminating this annoying pop-up. This is really not acceptable and mars the game leaving it with a slight but annoying glitch. Acclaim are responsible for this fault in an otherwise fine game and they have no excuses for this bar the aforementioned laziness. Right that’s my anger out of the way, back to the game. Once your primal urges, no not those ones, have been satisfied by screaming round the cities at breakneck speeds in an attempt to wring every last dollar from the inhabitants of the game you may like to try something new. This is where crazy box comes in. Best described as a spoof of Gran Turismo’s licence tests, crazy box teaches you the skills needed to survive in the cut-throat world of crazy cabbies. Wow that sounds so much better than crazy taxi. There are 15 tests in all with 9 facing you at the start and 6 harder ones that become unlocked as you pass the easier tests. This gives you an incentive to complete the tests if one was needed at all. The tests themselves are quite enjoyable and range from jumping over ramps and the sea to carrying 6 people in the back of your taxi to a destination via a windy lane with a very large drop on either side. The tests are labelled from C-easiest to S-hardest which ties in nicely with the ranks in the actual game except that Awesome and Crazy seem to be the two highest accolades available in the game. At the present time, Crazy taxi is the best arcade game on the PS2 and is as fun and addictive as SSX, which is also a stunning game by the way. Sure, Crazy taxi could have been better but who’s complaining, it is a very enjoyable experience and a worthwhile addition to any PS2 owner’s collection. Buy it now and roll on Crazy Taxi 2.
After finally persuading my cousin to get a PlayStation 2, I have now managed to detach myself from the dual shock controller in order to write a review of Sony’s monolithic demon of a games machine. Needless to say, this review will be extensive, so get ready for a catalogue of important information that you should know about PS2. I’ve been thoroughly impressed, my cousin slightly less, and I’m going to explain why this machine is the safest, most appropriate choice for your next generation of games console. Sit back, get some coffee and stay awake! The past: Sony break free from the PlayStation one’s tremendous success as the number one 32 bit games machine to own and bring out something in March of the year 2000 that could totally destroy everything else in the market, or possibly, destroy Sony themselves. You maybe pondering about buying one, hopefully I’ll persuade you to set your doubts away to some far off place and you’ll be a PlayStation 2 better off within a few days. It sold. Oh yes it sold like the hottest piece of hardware that it actually is, demolishing all previous gaming console records. The PS2 was an instant hit in Japan, with those ‘horrendous’ (although some just laughable) scenes of fighting – everyone wanted one, and now some 13million people worldwide have one in their homes. The launch wasn’t smooth, oh no! Memory cards faulty, machines that refused to be played upon – even a case or two of exploding consoles! Surely not! Anyway, Sony, being the market leaders that they are managed to sort everything out within a few weeks and now the PS2 is dominating the Jap’s charts with games like Tekken Tag and SSX starting off the launch, and still selling well today. Then came the USA. Unlike the kindred spirits of good old Sony Europe (Sony UK to be more precise), Sony of America forgot to include a launch pre-order scheme, like the one we had, hence more and
more insane fighting and queue jumping in the malls of the good old US of A, thanks to a demand that outstripped the supply by almost 5:1. Our turn. Again, supply had been restricted and only 165,000 units had been allocated to the UK, as opposed to the 200,000 that we were led to believe. Fortunately I pre-ordered and got one on launch day, and was I tempted to sell for £600 on the auction sites? You bet! I doubled my money, got another PS2 the next day along with 7 cracking games! Fantastic – thank you Sony! By the way, supposedly the shortages were down to a tiny chip or part that couldn’t be manufactured in time in such a scale that would have kept supply in sync with demand. God bless that little chip. Anyway, I saw some PS2 fly for £1200! (Fly = sell) wow! And they said we were getting ripped off? Those who pre-order always prosper. That’s my new motto anyway! So, last November - 26th to be precise, was the UK’s launch of the PS2 and obviously the allocated amount was sold out on day one. The launch titles weren’t as bad as some people make out, I for one was delighted with the amount of variety, and I easily selected seven games! So, why should you get one? Graphically, the PlayStation 2 has the power to surpass anything out there – even the latest Pentium processors and all the current consoles. But I have seen some games that look more at home on the original PlayStation. It’s a well-publicised opinion, which has unduly become a ‘fact’ suggesting that the PS2 hasn’t got any decent games, that the graphics are all shoddy, and the DVD player is useless. Absolute rubbish (no not the PS2 – the supposed fact) – I will be the first to admit that games like Midnight Club street Racing and Wild, Wild Racing are hardly the sort of mouth watering prospects that you expected when you paid out your £299.99, but there are a lot of superb games with some fantastic graphics (and g
ameplay) that you shouldn’t overlook. The PS2 has 128bits and 291.3mhz of pure processing power. This demon can perform – negative comments only make it more powerful, thus Gran Turismo 3 will blow your socks off. Eat that Sega fans! SSX looks deliciously fresh, Moto GP and Fantavision make full use of the incredible lighting effects that the SP2 can achieve, and Tekken Tag shows just how realistic the FMV start ups are going to become. Sound. Yes the PS2 is sound & it’s also awesomely crisp and clear with Dolby Surround Digital sound (or something). Stick your favourite CD into the stylish CD opening slot and listen to it the way Virgin/Emi or Sony intended. The crystal clear sound is apparent in all the games available, except perhaps the original PS one games that can actually be used on this new console! It’s not just two in one you see. So I recommend you invest in a decent set of speakers to accompany your television and PlayStation 2 to fully appreciate such quality. Games? Yes at heart the PS2 is a games machine, it will always be a games machine but it’s also got an integrated DVD player, meaning you won’t have to fork out £150 or so on a standalone player. It’s region 2 so you can’t play imported DVD films but I have never needed to, and the DVD offers a good standard of picture quality. I’ve only got 5 DVD films – namely Gladiator, Road Trip, Terminator and the epic of last millennium – The Matrix and all play to a good quality. I have had no trouble whatsoever so I can only assume people that slate it either haven’t even got one or are comparing it (ridiculously) to some £700 Sony state of the art machine! Do you know what I mean? Yes so, games wise it’s already got a good few classics in my eyes and there are plenty more to come. Here’s six of the best: Zone of the Enders proved a popular hit, partly due to the Metal gear Solid 2 demo disc inc
luded, but mainly because it’s actually a highly playable and visually impressive mech game! I’d say this was a must have to be honest. Certainly one of my favourites at the moment! Crazy Taxi I just had to get. All these Dreamcast owners started ripping me unduly because apparently the PS2 had no good games? Yeah right, but anyway I was glad to see this Sega game appear on the Sony machine because it’s one of the few Dreamcast games I actually thought ‘if only that was on PS2’ and now it is! Worth every penny, it’s the best one player game I have. Tekken Tag Tournament or TTT for short was said to be exactly the same as Tekken 3! Well ok, it does play similarly but it looks stunning, a few dodgy backgrounds aside, this is a supreme fighting game that is definitely as good as the Dreamcast only Soul Calibur – I feel anyway. The characters are great, the scenery is alive and the music is classy. This was one of the 7 games I got with that handy £300 8) Moto GP is another Namco game, this time they take to the roads and shake off the ugliness of Ridge Racer 5, which didn’t do anything for me at all, and provides realistic super bike action – race on real tracks with real riders’ names. Good handling, great replays and roaring engine sounds does make this an essential. SSX Snowboarding is a superb extreme sports game that probably is the polar equivalent of the Tony Hawk’s Skateboarder game, which isn’t yet out on PS2. You can race at the same time as pulling off spectacular tricks to gain points and help you progress through the World Series. The snow is realistic, the music is wonderfully addictive and the control system is flawless. It’s got it all – snobby, cocky characters, great circuits and pumping music. Ready 2 Rumble boxing round 2 is another game that I highly advise you to get for your gaming delights, as a huge fan of the origi
nal which appeared multi format, I tell you now – this game is hilarious yet strangely authentic and is the post pub game of the year. It’s go your favourite boxers like Afro Thunder and Butcher Brown, but there’s also the king of backwards walking – Michael Jackson, the evicted White house couple Bill and Hillary Clinton and a strange robot type thing. It looks good and plays even better. Now who said there were no good games? The future: The greatest game of all time, hopefully, is about to embark it’s mission to sell more copies than any game before it is to be released sometime in July over here and already my girlfriend’s been complaining about my salivating at the mouth whilst gazing into some astounding screen shots. You know what it is yet? I’m talking Gran Turismo 3 of course. I’ve exhausted the first one, and the second still pops into the PS2 now and then, but next to my latest next generation games, GT2 doesn’t cut the bill and just looks dated, as sad it as it is, the graphics are making me not want to play it any more! SO I just have to get GT3. Oh, and so do you! MGS2 is probably the most highly anticipated game of all time, after the classic that saw Solid Snake stealth and slyness lead him through the first one. Metal Gear Solid: Sons of Liberty, all being well should be released a few weeks before Christmas. Excellent – I know what’s on my Xmas list! EA sports are backing Sony’s console very well at the moment with loads of Sports games being unleashed onto the PS2 world. Fifa 2001 is actually better than a lot of people say, in my view at least, but the new Fifa – 2002 most likely, should really show the PS2s capability. Konami titles, Eidos, Capcom, even Sega, THQ, Namco and about 100 other developers make the PS2 the horse to back. New consoles will arrive, but they won’t bother me in the least. Sure they’ll have better graphics
and fresher games, more hype and so forth, but when you’re part of a community – a growing one, with loads of top games, hundreds more to come, then I won’t be trading in. No way! The Game Cube from Nintendo and the X Box from Microsoft both look like strong contenders, but Sony have over a year head start, so there’s no worrying on their part. The only other console, which could be said to be in opposition to Sony, is the Sega Dreamcast, but it’s discontinued now, and won’t be getting many more games. Size and looks? The PlayStation 2 is a lot heavier than the PS one, it’s also three times the size (of the new compact PS one), but then it has got a lot more goodies stuffed into it. A4 minus a margin is the area of the front panel, and it’s about 4 inches deep. Unlike nearly every other console, you can lay your PS2 flat or vertically, and pay out £10 for a stand if you so wish, it does honestly add support and make it look better. It looks alright I’d say with a swish purple fading to blue logo on the front with engraved PlayStation 2 underneath the PS2, and it’s black so it blends in nicely with your VCR, should your VCR be black of course. 2 memory card slots, 2 control pad ports and a USB connection with various other ins and out located on the machine – an expansion bay will allow the modem to fit in when it’s released, so no the PS2 isn’t online ready at the moment. A mouse, keyboard and other peripherals should arrive soon. It kind of looks like a stylish black skyscraper – not really anything like a radiator. It does collect dust. You must use duster! I’m very, very pleased with mine. It’s a giant leap from the PlayStation and can even play your old PlayStation games, which is something – you won’t have to sell them if you get rid of the PSX. It’s ensured a long and prosperous life, with games being released all the time, the
genres are rapidly being filled and some should be created soon! Get one is my advice. For your £270 you’re getting a decent DVD player, the best games machine out and a superb CD player. What more can you ask for? J