Stuntman - PS2

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Also for: GBA
Viewed: 3D Third person, into the screen Genre:
Racing: Car
Racing: Off-Road
Media: CD Arcade origin:No
Developer: Reflections Soft. Co.: Reflections
Publishers: Atari (GB/US/GB)
Released: 19 Sept 2003 (GB)
6 Sept 2002 (GB)
Sept 2002 (US)
Ratings: 11+, ESRB Teen 13+ (T)
Accessories: Memory Card
Features: Vibration Function Compatible


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We must confess that we got more than a little giddy with excitement at the prospect of a new game from the developer behind the hugely playable Driver series, especially when we heard and saw the first syllable in its title. Just imagine - Reflections' unique car handling physics married to the kind of game that doesn't have so much of a storyline, more of an obligation to play it, and all on the PS2. Driver and its sequel were great fun, yes, but now the majority of have grown used to the 'easier on the eye' visual capabilities of the PS2 and its games, do you really want to go back to the Driver and Driver 2? Didn't think so. Looking for a game that can deliver all that Driver-type fun and games in spades? Let Stuntman into your life.

Career is the main mode and where you get your major jollies with Stuntman. Here you can embark upon your own path to screen fame, earning cash, kudos and better vehicles to aid you in moving up the stunt performing-ranks in a bid to become the best in the business. You'll start out working on small budget films and work your way up to the big blockbuster movies, but only if you're very talented and have no fear. During the course of each stunt, you'll have to perform many individual tasks as specified by the film's director. If you fail to reach the threshold he sets, you will have to repeat the stunt over again until he's satisfied. The good news is that whichever movie you're working on, whichever director is calling the shots, you can try as many times as you like to get it right. With only the briefest of descriptions offered before each scene, trial and error is the key to the game - something which is initially frustrating, but which is also the reason that keeps you coming back to try again…and again…and again to get a better performance, and so earn more money. As you progress through your career, the stunts get more difficult, but the payments for successful execution increase too. In addition to being a better stuntman with a bulging wallet, you'll also be rewarded with vehicles, ramps, crates and other paraphernalia to use in the Stunt Arena and Training mode.

The Stunt Arena is where you can set up your own stunt sequences. At first, there are only a limited amount of toys to play with, but this mode does at least help you get used to the physics of the big cars. Once you start progressing through your career in films, bigger, more exciting equipment becomes available.

Great performance in your career also opens up modes under the Driving Games header, a complementary side-game to Stunt Arena. The first of the driving games is Precision Test, which consists of driving around marked courses in a given amount of time. Courses are littered with coloured cones which specify whether you should be going forwards or whether you should be in reverse. Hitting any cones will incur a time penalty and ruin your chances of getting to the next, more difficult course.

Speed Tests are awarded when you complete a movie's stunts in career mode. In these tests, you must race between checkpoints in the fastest possible time. Successfully complete the required number of laps within the allotted time limit to progress to the next, and inevitably harder test.

The final series of driving games will only become unlocked once the Career mode has been conquered and a Lead Stuntman ranking attained. In order to complete this ultimate test, you'll have to collect all the Stunt Tokens dotted about the arena in a limited amount of time. As in the rest of the Stuntman experience, the further you go, the more difficult things get.

The depth of gameplay in Stuntman is enough to satisfy even the most demanding player. We feel we can safely say that there is no one outside of the development team that will crack this game within a few hours. Aside from the game itself, there are some attractive extras: a 'making of' movie, interviews and film clips of real-life stuntmen, an Atari Games gallery and music videos.

Okay, this next scene involves you getting down to the business of buying a copy of Stuntman, so what are you waiting for? Like the director says, "Action!"