MotorStorm Apocalypse (Evolution)
After playing Gran Turismo 5 and the 3D-retrofitted demo of Pacific Rift, I couldn’t wait to jump into MotorStorm Apocalypse (out this week) and watch as buildings crashed down around me in a city relocated to somewhere a little south of Heaven. The MotorStorm franchise has never been known for its subtlety, and given that I was a tad disappointed with just how, well, subtle the dimensionality is in Apocalypse. At the game’s start, the courses you’re careening around have limited lines of sight and are a little too claustrophobic to get a good sense of forward depth. It wasn’t until I did my first night race through the city (on the back of a crotch rocket) that I saw any benefit to the use of stereo 3D in Apocalypse. Burning embers were floating around the track, nutjob pedestrians were throwing Molotov cocktails at my opponents and me, and skyscrapers started crashing down around us all.
Destruction definitely makes for the best 3D effects here. One circuit takes place across multiple skyscraper roofs, and seeing the fictitious skyline stretch out ahead, only to crash to the ground mere seconds after the race started, elicited more than a few expletives from me. The course design feels uneven, though and doesn’t offer a consistent “wow” factor, at least during the time I've spent with the game so far.
Of the three games discussed in this article, Apocalypse also takes the most noticeable hit in graphics performance while playing in 3D. And aside from environmental effects like water and dirt gathering onscreen, the HUD is flat and — quite honestly — boring in its presentation. Ironically — considering how one-dimensional the narrative is — the motion-comic story sequences made the most use of the added visual depth.
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