Supercross 2000 is Electronic Arts' entry into the world of dirt bike racing, and it definitely feels like a first-year effort. Control issues and dodgy graphics plant Supercross 2000 firmly behind 989 Sports' recent addition to the genre, Supercross Circuit.
Supercross 2000 is broken up into two styles. The racing mode puts you on lots of different tracks, while the freestyle mode puts you in a large area populated with jumps, bowls, and other air-enablers. On paper, both modes look really cool, but the game's control really isn't up to snuff, and this takes a lot away from what otherwise would have been a pretty good game. The problems surface when you make turns. The game tries to make turning realistic, in that your rider will put his foot down if you jam the stick all the way to one side, but you never seem to turn with a tight enough radius to feel fully in control of your bike. Turning problems aside, the game features a pretty nice physics model, and the bikes buckle and bounce in a realistic fashion after big jumps.
Graphically, the game looks a little boxy, especially the racers' legs and torsos, but everything runs at a tolerable frame rate in both one- and two-player mode. The game's sound is every bit as annoying as real supercross races, complete with grinding, buzzing motors. The play-by-play is low on the personality meter, sticking strictly to calling out passes, tricks, and other semi-important events.
If you're a fan of supercross, 989's Supercross Circuit is the game to get. EA's Supercross series may eventually become a contender, but this first effort is lacking. Hopefully we'll see some control tweaks and some improved performance in the sound and graphics departments in the unannounced-but-you-know-EA-will-eventually-do-it sequel.