The penalising mechanic that underpins challenge in all other racers is evidently ineffectual here. Following every crash, Nail'd respawns you safely on the track ahead of the offending obstacle or precipice with no time penalty - in some cases even increasing your lead slightly. Although it's not a defect players would readily exploit – crashing still irritates, after all – it's one that diminishes gameplay by engendering an irrevocable sense of invulnerability.
It's only rock and roll...
That feeling is augmented by the game's overall difficulty, which remains static throughout. While the tournament mode and system of bike upgrades suggest a progressive challenge through Nail'd's various league and cup competitions, it becomes clear that the AI drivers of the first race are as just as fast and aggressive as those of the 104th race. And it's not just your opponents who remain static – upgrades to your quad or motorcross bike are always zero-sum, so a new engine might boost top-end speed, but will come at the expense of handling and acceleration.
Perching in the treetops
Occasional spikes in difficulty ultimately prove false dawns. Although most are designed for three-lap races, several of Nail'd's tracks are special, giant one-lap downhill courses. These courses take the longest time to master – your first few attempts often in vain against an AI familiar with the shortest routes. But even downhill courses are memorised within half-a-dozen or so races. And with only 14-tracks in total, servicing 104-individual race events, Nail'd runs dry of novelty well before the tournament's halfway stage.
Next page: Depressed mode
Just in time
So glad you did this review, played the demo last night and seemed alright with the 2 tracks on offer.
Best to wait for Motorstorm me thinks.
I'll stick with Motorstorm
Nail'd sounds pretty poor.
We have all of the Motorstorms, now they are a really good offroad racer.
I like the Patriot Rodeo, Monarch Claymore (a Bowler), the blue tanker lorry (Hydroaid?)
"the impunity of its crashes"
Isn't that like every racing game in the modern console-gaming age? You scrape your car around the crash barriers of a track with your virtual foot on the virtual floor, slam into the rear/sides/front of other cars, and blast through the finishing line only to be offered stuff to buy. (When I say "you", I actually mean the talentless dick you're racing against, realising that there's no point in having a brake control when you can bounce off the side of the track as if you were an elementary particle.)
Nice scenery, though.
Thanks for the caption
The game looks rubbish, thanks for the review :-) But even bigger thanks for the caption of "Boulder Dash", I'm off to find a C64 emulator to play that instead!
The stills look very similar to Pure - that was a great game. Thought this might be the sequel when I saw the first pic but reading this review it definitely isn't...