Amped 2 E3 2003 Preshow Report

Microsoft is developing a sequel to its snowboarding game.

Microsoft has announced its plans for a sequel to its Xbox snowboarding game Amped. Amped 2 appears to feature a redesigend trick system, but the most important new element definitely looks like its Xbox Live support.

Like the first game, Amped 2 has a career mode that starts you out with nothing but the drive to become a household name. Performing big tricks in front of sponsors, boarding fans, and photographers will pave your way to mainstream snowboard success, taking you to the upper echelon of the sport and giving you all the media coverage and magazine covers that come along the way.

The trick system has been updated with what the developers are calling "steez." It sounds like performing tricks with steez works like a "perfect" bonus that you get when executing your tricks as well as possible. Playing with style is a counterpart to the more aggressive method of riding, and both will produce high scores. All the tricks from the first game return, and now you can link tricks together by doing manual-like butters, much like in Activision's Shaun Palmer's Pro Snowboarder series. Other newly tweaked versions of existing tricks are also available.

The game's tracks are being designed by a real-life snowpark designer. You'll find mountains in Switzerland, Australia, and New Zealand, among others. Also in the real-life department are a large collection of licensed gear and 14 professional riders. Amped 2's soundtrack is gargantuan, featuring more than 300 songs from independent artists.

Whether it's via split-screen, a LAN, or Xbox Live, you'll have access to various multiplayer modes, such as horse, score competitions, and a king of the mountain mode. The game will have team-based multiplayer modes as well. You'll have access to regional and worldwide rankings, and you can also trade replays with other players and download new content, including new mountains, snowboarding gear, and music.

Amped 2 is expected to be finished in time for this year's holiday season.

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Jeff Gerstmann

Jeff Gerstmann has been professionally covering the video game industry since 1994.
Amped 2

Amped 2