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View Full Version : Baja EOC Review -Written by me!


flippy1008
09-28-2008, 07:56 PM
So what's going on here then? Two off road racing games out the same day for the same price in the same shops! While we believe Baja has competition, PURE, its expected rival only focuses on off road quad bike racing and superb stunts, while Baja takes a Colin McRae angle by adding dune buggies, motorbikes and much more into the mix, while removing the jazzy, just for fun, stunts. So unlike PURE, this is off road racings at a more considerably safe level!

In the few moments glimpse of playing this game, I could see its perks. The menu was expansive. The career mode is way bigger than PURE is, the online options are equally as massive, despite only having 6 players, and the other options are equally accessible. In fact its boosts quick play modes over Career modes! But still, I jumped into career to try some fun off road, funny camera angle racing.

Yes you heard that right, the camera angle is actually correct for once. Rockstar promised us a camera tilted further to the left in GTA 4, but it was very much strafed left and didn't feel massively different. The perk with Baja is it's that its camera is, by default, from a more sensible angle, which, while very confusing to start off with, works well when you are trying find any nearby opponents and also for seeing corners over the next hill.

Adding to this fantastically well implanted feature, along with a massive list of options, here is the new control system which is so simple that even the control mechanics of your many 30 plus vehicles work well. The control like pressing the Right Trigger to accelerate and Left Trigger to brake with the left thumbstick to steer, and depending on the force you give the triggers depends on the speed of acceleration and deceleration. Apart from in menus, not of the other buttons, bar the back camera change button, are in use during the race. The only time you will be required to us more than those buttons are when you crash, when you pull the two shoulder buttons simultaneously to respawn the vehicle. Luckily, it respawns you in record time and also the moments before you crashed the car so your position will remain intact.

And you will get carried away with these new subtle features however the problem lies with the fact that the environments you race are still as brown and gray as ever. In fact, compared to Untamed earlier this year, they are probably even worse. The car physics are spot on and the environments look vaguely realistic but it just feels a little bland and too little activity. Also comes the problem with soundtracks. There is none! The only sound you here is the rather bad noise of your battered Beetle. The soundtrack only plays in the menus and loading screens, which there are lots of in excess of 20 seconds at least, and when it comes to the race, there just isn't sound. Its very much like those games where you never realise there is anything on the radio until one song plays really loud for a second, except there isn't any of that either. It's a shame because it could have added more fun to the slightly dull racing experience.

Add to this is the normal repetive by nature racing environment. Like you'll find with PURE, it gets boring, quick. Racing around different tracks is fine until you realise most of them look the same, and with essentially only an upgraded car and better AI, the game doesn't offer much else. I know it's a big ask, but maybe mixing in some fun modes would have made it great. Like before, not having a soundtrack during the races doesn't help the situation anymore.

So who has won this competition? Well from the first sight Baja has it all. Unlimited modes, stable framerate, lots of vehicles, and a working camera angle, but look into the graphical and audible side of things and you start to see problems. Add to this the boredom you can experience just like other racers, it stops looking up and goes downhill. However PURE has a very hard control system, a very unforgiving AI and not many vehicles, in fact you have to make them yourself, but it has got good graphics and good soundtrack and 3 new modes to add to bag of boredom. So really it's a draw. It may sound crazy but really both have brilliant and disappointing aspects from each. It just depends whether you want a stunt full off road quad bike racer or an off road buggy thriller!

Graphics 4.0 Not great
Soundtrack 2.0 Only in the menus and loading screens
Achievements - 6.0 - A good mix of easy and hard
Last ability 8.9 So much to do, and so much time taken up
Overall 7.0 While the PURE score may be a darn sight higher, Baja has aspects which PURE never had, and vice versa. Buy both and be happy!

Suki
09-28-2008, 10:40 PM
yeah well i gave baja a proper go today well an hour in that hour i finished the first 3 tiers of the baja buggy league, i managed to come first in all of these races (8) i have hill climb next, winning gave a great sense of accomplishment, u really have to race hard and live on your reactions to win and its exciting racing with jumps over rivers and roads with traffic on, racing along the edge of a mountain etc etc. I read many reviews and comments on this game and wasnt looking forward to playing it and the first race doesnt help its a crappy track with worst graphics but get ovet the graphics and i think u have a great racing game with all the modifications of forza (well almost) but most importantly for me its very close exciting racing and thats all im after. i will update when i have played more but at the moment im looking forward to my next session. I've got 130 gamerpoints so far :)
ps: i have fininshed PURE with 880 gp's and really enjoyed it but u cannot compare these two games at all its like trying to compare GRID to Forza there both racing games but very very different as are these 2 off roaders, u can enjoy them both, i believe though baja has a lot less spit and polish than pure but will last a lot lot longer than pure.

flippy1008
09-29-2008, 06:36 AM
so are u basically saying you agree with my review bar the comparison

jeffy777
09-29-2008, 06:05 PM
Also comes the problem with soundtracks. There is none! The only sound you here is the rather bad noise of your battered Beetle. The soundtrack only plays in the menus and loading screens, which there are lots of in excess of 20 seconds at least, and when it comes to the race, there just isn't sound. Its very much like those games where you never realise there is anything on the radio until one song plays really loud for a second, except there isn't any of that either. It's a shame because it could have added more fun to the slightly dull racing experience.

Uhhhh, there is a sound track (mostly rock tracks). You just have to turn the in-game music up in the sound options. It's turned down by default.

I would think if you're going to take the time to review it you would have discovered that :)