DREAMCAST Metropolis Street

Racer (Sega) £39.99 at a: ir * it Whether it’s hairdressers in two- seat soft tops, teenagers in XR3i's, thirtysomethings in Range Rovers or salesmen in Audi's with their jackets hanging in the back, everyone knows cars are about showing off. Sure they are incredibly useful, even essential, in getting you from A to B but if they aren't doing it in style then it is a journey wasted. Yet strangely, this is the one aspect of our automotive crutches that has been overlooked in the gaming world. Until now. Metropolis Street Racer is built on the premise that it ain't what you do it's how you do it. The currency of MSR is kudos, that all-important coolness, and progress through the

250 stages depends on your ability to garner this. Simply completing a stage below the time challenge gains you a little. However, pull a few powerslides, never hit a barrier or lower the time challenge to begin with and kudos comes pouring in. Indeed, the sliding scale of kudos points means that MSR has an almost infinite playing life. Going back to complete earlier stages in better times is all part of the experience, and the draw. Cool is something that is never achieved, only

striven for.

To back up this gloriously infectious gameplay are

Aim to be cool with gloriously infectious gameplay and utterly mind-blowing detail

some of the best graphics ever seen on a console. All the races are set on the streets of three cities. London, Tokyo or San Francisco. Liverpool-based developers Bizarre Creations have recreated a few square miles of streets each, right down to the nearest signpost, pillar and rubbish bin. The detail is utterly mind-blowing with adverts in phone boxes, menus in restaurant windows and readable posters on shop fronts.

MSR is enthrallingly different, fantastically realised

and a real scoop for the Dreamcast. Are you cool

enough? (lain Davidson)

PLAYSTATION FIFA 2001 (Electronic Arts) £29.99 * t t i

It must be that time of year again! The annual FIFA experience has arrived and, shock horror, there’s not much difference from last year. The game looks a little better, with crisper players, better weather and pitch effects and some ridiculous goal scoring animations but the gameplay is pure FIFA. Scoring is easier than during a student union happy hour and it is no feat to take the mighty Scotland team all the way to the World Cup final and trounce Brazil 8—2 on your first attempt. However, FIFA has always been a denizen of the post-pub, mate- versus-mate evening hours and FIFA 2007 won’t let anyone down in that regard. As many friends as can crowd around the telly can battle it out and the battling is much fun. This is a guaranteed seller and your guaranteed to enjoy it. if only it did something new.

This Is Football 2 (Sony) £29.99 * t at t

The young pretender to F/FA's crown, This Is Football received a rather lukewarm reception on its debut. A poor balance between gameplay and style showed the young lad up but he’s gone and used the experience wisely and it has made him, fun-wise, a better player in spades. Although

114 THE IJST 30 Nov-14 Dec 2000

graphically inferior to the slickness of FIFA, in full flow This Is Football 2 looks a lot more like real football. Slower and more organised, picking passes and changing team shape becomes paramount and mazy 50 yard run resulting in an edge-of-the-box wonder strike are unheard of. Rather, your team works the ball forward, probing for that killer pass or whipped cross that allows a striker to earn his keep. There are problems associated with this style, player Al for example, and there can be frustrating moments of helplessness but if you love football for more than just goals then T/F2 is the one for you.

The World Is Not Enough (Electronic Arts) £29.99 t t it

Since the release of Goldeneye, licensed Bond titles have suffered from unfair comparisons. Goldeneye was a freak, an aberration, a one-off that will never be repeated and in a fair world should not be allowed to ruin the enjoyment of other games. Or should it? The latest Bond experience The World Is Not Enough is a decent little game. It follows the story of the movie, has all the gadgets, involves all the girls, the smart suits, even the card playing. It features a host of missions that are tricky, involving and enjoyable, all presented in admirably realistic, if grainy, good looks. Yet all this never really hangs together properly. Bad guys

appear out of nowhere, the inventory is clumsy, missions that require you to have seen the movie to overcome, lots of little niggles that add up to a lot. The World Is Not Enough is just nowhere near as good as, gulp, Goldeneye.

Action Man Destruction X (300) £29.99 *irir

lt warms the heart to see that among all the Pokemon fads and Digimon crazes one hero stands firm. A hero


who won’t desert you, who won't run, who has been around, seen it, done it, been there. Action Man Destruction X allows kids of any age to wreak rocket- launching, bullet-spraying, do-good havoc without destroying their bedroom. There are a wide variety of environments to explore, involving a large number of playing styles from running and shooting to driving and shooting. Though this limits the subtleties offered by focused gameplay, if you don't like one level, you'll enjoy the next. The (STA-style third level for example is a cracker, roaring around a city combating all manner of criminals, protecting the innocent and doing what an Action Man does best. Though aimed at the younger audience, Action Man Destruction X will titillate those of a nostalgic persuasion.

NINTENDO 64 Legend Of Zelda: Majora's Mask (Nintendo) £49.99 * t t * *

Frequently voted among the top three games ever, the successor to Legend Of Zelda: Ocarina Of Time has a lot to live up to. Yet somehow, and Lord alone knows how, Nintendo has pulled out another belter of a title. Following on from the end of Ocarina, our hero Link must now battle the wielder of the titular Mask of Majora, while saving Clock Town from its meeting with the moon in three days. All the favourite characters are back to help or hinder Link and his world has again been created in beautiful 30. But it is the puzzle and exploration elements to Majora’s Mask that provide the most enjoyment. Fingernails will be bitten, heads scratched and mistakes made at many points during the game but the thrill of opening that next door, turning that next corner will drive you on. They don't come any better than this. (lain Davidson)

The World Is Not Enough never really hangs together properly