Joe-Danger-SE-XBLA-Review Joe Danger SE XBLA Review

   14/12/2011 at 01:13       Chris OToole       6 COMMENTS. - Score 5/5
 - Joe Danger, Tean Nasty, XBLA, Hello Games, Stunts

Joe Danger SE isn't Trials HD. It isn't even ExciteBike. It's something new, something different, and most of all, something fun.

After a horrible accident caused by the nefarious Team Nasty, our erstwhile title character decides that after healing his broken bones, now is the time to take to the saddle once more and prove that even after his lengthy recuperation period, he still has the chops to be the world's number one stuntman.

This involves level after level of platforming, high-score getting, racing madness, but not exactly in the way you'd expect. You see, I always expected Joe Danger SE to play like Trials, but it's doesn't. There isn't even a high-score table for your fastest times. Bizarrely, Joe Danger SE is more of a platformer. You have several star-giving medal-challenges (the currency to unlock stages) to collect in each level and these can range from hitting targets, finishing under a par time, finding sneakily hidden stars and even comboing the whole level which means you have to complete the whole course without a break to your stunts - wheelies will be your friend when trying for this one. The game is a bit like a more controllable Sonic The Hedgehog with a Tony Hawk scoring mechanic lovingly dolloped on to it. And the cherry on top? Well that would be the game's pitch-perfect humour and the lavish amounts of polish Hello Games has managed to add.

Ah yes, the polish, once upon a time plain old Joe Danger was a PSN exclusive, a game we at AATG loved upon its initial release. So what is new enough here for Microsoft to buy up and release this fresh Special Edition of Joe Danger? Well, for a start the load times are far better, eighty percent better so say the developers, and that is the difference between turning it off, and having one more of several one more gos. Hello Games have also managed to add four times anti-aliasing without affecting the buttery smooth frame-rate, loads more playable character models for you to try and the downright evil pro medals, these bastards have you complete the requirements for every available medal on that stage on one perfect run though, and they are teasing, slippery bitches. Ahem.

The biggest addition to the new Joe danger SE is probably The Lab, a Micro Machines toy-like setting hides the sadistic underbelly of this fifteen-ish hour long torture chamber of joy. The Lab uses all the tips and tricks you have learned and throws them in your face to test your skills to their limits, and let me tell you, it's utter joy when you crack one of the tougher buggers. Think along the lines of Super Meat Boy, but on a motorbike. Yep, some can be that hard.

The Sandbox mode from the PSN game is still all present and correct, letting you create your own levels on the fly and send the results to your friends, also included are the fantastically fun Unirally-alike co-op and versus modes.

Joe Danger SE is a superb game, it improves and surpasses the PSN original on every imaginable level, and I've no hesitation in recommending it to everyone at it's top-end price of 1200 moonpoints, the amount of content seriously justifies the really rather meager cost here. Plus you can unlock a supremely camp Joe Danger costume for your avatar. Almost worth the admission price alone.

 

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