Crusty Demons Xbox, PS2 Review

Now when you think about the name ‘Crusty Demons’ you would automatically think of an epic RPG with boring gameplay and character history that is so irrelevant you just want to jump off a cliff! The title for this game actually comes from a movie released way back in 1994! It was a movie made by Fleshwound Films, and the title was ‘Crusty Demons of Dirt’. The idea for the movie was motocross inspired, following an American pro motocross rider doing what he does best – death defying jumps and leaps on his dirt bike! After the release of the movie, it changed the face of motocross as we know it and is now known and loved as Freestyle Motocross, in short FMX!

Crusty Demons is your typical extreme sports title. Pull off numerous tricks to gain a really high score, and go to the next area and repeat the same thing. Sounds boring, right? WRONG! For people who have played the Tony Hawk series and especially the BMX games such as the Mat Hoffman BMX XXX branch, Crusty Demons takes a similar approach to BMX XXX in the way that you have the stupid tasks that you have to complete each level. You could just scrape by in the way that you do the tasks at hand and leave the rest for a rainy day.

The story of this game is just random – it really is! The Crusty Demons start a race, and at the first jump on the course, they mess up and are all about to land on the ground and die! All of a sudden they are frozen in mid-air and transported to a cosy little room with the one and only Devil sitting in a chair. He explains that he can make it so they don’t ever die and they can do the most extreme stunts without worry and all he wants is their souls! They think its cool and all sign on the dotted line. After signing they are transported back to the exact same positions just before they were about to die, and they all land! OUCH!! They realize that they can’t die, but can feel pain and lots of it. So now the Crusty Demons are on a little adventure to get their souls back! The way they do it is by doing all random things that the Devil wants you to do in various cities around the world. Uh, what? Anyway, onto the gameplay!

The game play for this feels like Climax Studios have just paid Z-Axis, Ltd and said ‘Please let us copy your game engine’. With how this game handles, it is extremely loose and extremely choppy at best. It just feels like Dave Mirra’s BMX from the Playstation on how it controls. When it comes to doing big tricks and getting around a difficult level, it feels like a chore. Before you rev-up and ride out, you must choose your rider and bike. You unlock more riders and bikes with more of the game you play.

The main feature that this game will be advertised on is a gimmick. That is all. It is just trying to create the biggest injury possible by falling off your bike into walls and falling off big buildings. When you first start playing with it, it is hilarious. Also what they have put into it is a ‘crash after touch’. When you fly off your bike, you use the left analogue stick to control your Demon to get the crash just perfect! When you crash, you get a list what has been fractured and broken, also lots and lots of blood! Another feature is one that seems to be taken from EA BIG’s Freekstyle – basically SSX Tricky on dirt bikes. The aspect taken is the ultra fast turbo mode which helps you do huge jumps to do a more, let’s say, extreme crash. While doing this is a hoot, it gets boring very fast. Once you’ve gotten over how funny it is to break your bones in your body and lose gallons of blood, this game is very bland.

The available play modes are ‘Story Mode’, ‘Devil Rush’, ‘Freeride’ and ‘Multiplayer’. In Story Mode you control one of the Crusty Demons to venture forth and get your souls back by doing various stupid tasks that the devil wants you to do. It’s the same style as the Tony Hawk series (mainly THPS4 and onwards); free-roaming levels with people to talk to for tasks, do the tasks, and move on. You’re not just on your bike, as with Tony Hawks Underground 2; you use different vehicles. These range from a miniature pimp car, an ice-cream truck and a buggy. Random or what? [Editor’s note: That ice-cream truck sounds pretty pimpin’!]

Devil Rush is basically all the levels in story mode, but you have a set number of tasks to do in two minute’s time. Exactly like the Tony Hawk‘s tasks. Get three high scores, collect things. This is a better style of play for the people who are used to the other task-based extreme sports games. Freeride is simply just choosing which level you go on, and doing whatever the hell you want! Literally for if you are bored and cannot be bothered with the game, just play this and repeatedly smash your rider into a wall! Sadistic? I think so!

As a standard the game comes with multiplayer aspects. There are five modes available to choose from. ‘Stunt’ mode is about scoring the highest points at the end of the round. ‘Theft’ is about keeping an object for as long as possible. The other end of the scale for that is ‘Tag’ mode where you’ve got to be the person who hasn’t been “on” or “it” the longest. ‘Crash ‘n Grab’ is a fun mode; in this event you have to destroy as many targets as possible, mostly requiring you to fly off your bike in a suicidal manner. The last mode is ‘race’ which shouldn’t need explaining. If it did, you need slapping with a very cold and very wet fish.

The graphics in this game are really nice, look polished, and are very fast especially considering the amount of detail in some of the areas. The menu presentation is simplistic, but it works! The HUD for the game is the typical score – pop-ups when you’ve done something specific and also how much turbo you have. There are areas in certain levels where they do slow down, but that is because of the amount of detail. Thankfully it’s not enough slowdown to affect gameplay which is a good thing.

The music in this suits the sport down to a tee. It sounds fast, cheap and dirty. It’s exactly what you need with this kind of game. For some reason, no matter the sport, if it’s extremely fast nasty metal always suits it! It will definitely be suited to the metal heads out there, but not to the people that like to sit back and chill out with the music while doing crazy extreme stunts. Again, the Tony Hawk series had the music down for everyone’s liking.

Overall, this will certainly entertain the FMX fans out there. For people unfamiliar with it, this may not last long. It was a nice attempt at an extreme sports game, but it will just get boring very fast. The Tony Hawk series has already claimed the best title set for this genre.

This fiery demon has just been frozen…

7.8 out of 10