Cool Boarders 4


Review by Matt Paprocki

989 Studios


Graphics: 8

Sound: 7

Gameplay: 7

Overall: 7

coolboarders41ps1.jpg (37107 bytes)989's Cool Boarders series has been the most prevalent series of snowboarding games on the Playstation. Other systems have since had better playing games and Cool Boarders has been fallen into the "redundant" category. The fourth attempt gives players all the normal features of today's snowboarding games, but doesn't add much to the rapidy over crowding genre.

The series has improved significantly over the past few years and this game continues the trend. The characters move realistically and perform their tricks with uncanny realism. The snow shows the treads of where your boarder has been and deeper snow will cover your rider in the white stuff, while also slowing you down.

Tricks are easy to perform and come out smoothly. The responsive controls only help, especially when in the games half-pipe mode. The speed seems to be a bit slow when in the air, but this gives time for the tricks to pulled off without frustration, unlike many of today's snowboarding games. Simple button presses can perform some of the more complicated moves allowing for even the novice players to pick up a controller and have a go at it.

The basic sounds suit the game, but not much has changed since the first incarnation. The music is still of the metal/alternative type, perfectly suiting the sport. The rest of the games sound effects are basic voiceovers and shredding sounds.

coolboarders42ps1.jpg (38108 bytes)Many features litter the game to increase the replay value. The real problem here is the fact all of these have been prominently featured in other games and done much better. The half-pipe mode is simple and effective, but other 'board games such as Tony Hawk have upped the ante. Regular races are of the basic "finish first with the most points" type, adding nothing to the genre.

One questionable features include the ability to punch you opponents to stop them from completing the race. While this can be turned off, the fact that it was included lowers the games credibility and realism factor. Once can only make wild assumptions as to why this feature was included.

Overall, the game is definitely one of the better snowboarding games available for the Playstation. Unfortunately, other games have done it better. Sequel-itis is setting in with this game as little improvements are being made to help the series keep up with other, more advanced games. Fans of the series will enjoy playing through the latest edition of Cool Boarders, but will find little incentive to go out and actually put down the cash to justify a purchase.


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Last updated: Tuesday, October 04, 2005 11:38 PM