ScreamRide: Not a health and safety officer in sight

One of gaming’s great joys is the discovery of the new. The relentless charge of endless FPS blasts and snow-capped RPGs might try and convince us other wise, but this is a pastime that has the power to take us to new worlds, to try new things, to live impossible lives. Sure, we love shooting things, but it’s great to see something a little different come our way. ScreamRide, from the firing synapses of the world-class minds at Frontier Development, wants to take you for the kind of ride you’ve never been on before. Yes, this is a rollercoaster game from a studio with quite the tilt-a-whirl heritage, but this isn’t your granddad’s rail-runner. This is as much about the carnage of destruction as it is the grandeur of creation.

Yes, you will be using a vast and streamlined creative suite to build terrifying near-future thrill rides, and ScreamRide will let you reach for the skies and lunge for terra firm a with coasters that push the limits of the laws of physics. Fun to ride, but way better to actually drive. Unlike most coaster games that ask you to just sit back and enjoy the ride, ScreamRide needs a bit more from its players. You’re going to have to be one of the brave souls who actually have to test these adrenalin factories. ScreamRide then becomes something like an extreme Scalextric set, putting you in the driving seat of a tiny little car you’re actually going to have to negotiate the rails and keep your car from flying off to its, and inevitably your, death.

It’sa time trial of sorts; competing with Xbox Live friends for the most rapid route, and even testing out their tracks. In truth, though, falling off isn’t the worst thing you can do. In fact, it might just be the best part of the game. Send your car off at the right angle and you can demolish an entire rollercoaster by smashing through a key support, then watch as the whole thing comes crashing down to earth. It’s an incredible spectacle. Of course, if you want to be a bit more precise, you can carry out a controlled demolition, leaving the poor sods in the car with absolutely no chance. They’ll understand.

ScreamRide might not dominate the charts, but it’s exactly why gaming is so interesting games like this let us play around with living impossible lives, one destroyed theme park ride at a time.

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