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A.P.I Review: Freestyle Boardin' '99
Developer: Pony Canyon Inc. OPTIONS: S.SHOT
No.1   No.2   No.3
Distributor: Capcom 1-2 Player
Game Type: Sports / Snowboarding Memory Card
Review Date: April 1999 Dual Shock/Analog Compatible

Setting the Scene

Ah, here it is April. Nice sunny weather is returning, things are starting to warm up...what better time then to sit down and review...a snow boarding game?!? Hey, we take 'em as we get 'em.

Freestyle Boardin' '99 is the latest game trying to capitalize on the ever-growing interest in snow boarding games.

Select your board, put on your best duds and get ready to do some shredding!

Sound & Vision

To start off, Freestyle Boardin' '99 does not have any sort of opening FMV, it simply kicks you right into the main menu. Now I realize that this doesn't really matter in the grand scheme of things but it is always nice to get psyched up to play a game with a really good opening like in Gameday '99.

The graphics throughout the game are decent doing the job of representing the snow boarding sport. The courses are easy to follow and the players have good animation during moves but there were a couple of flaws.
*One, the crowds along the slopes look like cardboard cutouts propped up in some old ghost town to fool Big Bad Bart into thinking there are more townspeople.
*Second, when you get a bit off course and hit the rocks or a fence (which I did many times), you can see a lot of polygon seaming and clipping going on.

Overall the graphics weren't bad but there is definitely room for improvement.

The music for this game is actually pretty good. There is something like eight different songs to choose from in the Config menu and all of them can get your blood pumping. However, there is an announcer throughout the game that becomes a bit of a nuisance. He has an extremely annoying voice and if you play the game long enough he will drive you crazy.

The overall sound effects do a good job in imitating the sounds you would expect to hear in a sport of this sort. Cool snow shredding sounds, painful thuds as you slam into a wall or snow bank. You know, the usual stuff.


Freestyle Boardin' 99 has four different playable modes to choose from, Championship, Time Competition, Free Style, and VS Modes.

The Championship mode is obviously the most comprehensive of the bunch. You start by picking the particular boarder you want. There are five different people to choose from with varying skills. Once you have selected a boarder you proceed to the first race. There are eight races and depending on how well you do, you get points to upgrade your skills between races. Championship Mode touches the full gamut of courses from downhill to half pipe with slalom and freestyle jumping in between.

The Free Style mode allows you to pick the particular course you want to race on and then compete for the highest point value (trick points and speed). What I found good about this mode was the free style jump course. It affords a setting in which to practice your jump moves, and they are not easy. You have to hold down particular buttons while simultaneously moving the D-Pad, but only after you jump properly! Eventually you get used to it but the developers don't make it easy.

The Time Competition mode is just as it sounds. You race simply for the best time.

I always enjoy competing against friends but I was a little disappointed in the VS mode. In this mode you race against a friend but with a side by side / vertical split screen. This may not sound like a big deal but it gets very confusing when you start bumping into things and seeing through them like I mentioned before. VS mode is fun but it will definitely screw with your eyes.

Freestyle Boardin' '99 is your typical run of the mill sporting game for Playstation. While it can grab your attention for some time while you learn moves and skills, it doesn't keep you interested in coming back. It's the kind of game that is fun to play every once in a while but not nearly exciting enough to play everyday. I recommend renting rather than buying.

GRAPHICS: 13/20 I thought Freestyle Boardin' '99 was an average game. Average graphics, average gameplay, average!

It has its moments, especially in the Championship Mode, but lacks that something extra to give it that "wow" factor.

It has its fun aspects but it lacks the excitement to keep you coming back. It can be enjoyable to play but only once in a while.
SOUND: 7/10
VALUE: 13/20


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