My latest game review is a bit of a departure from my normal stuff. Every review I have done in the past revolved some type of car racing game like Forza, F1, etc. However a rep from Namco Bandai games reached out to me about a new motocross game they developed called “MUD”.
Nostalgic thoughts of Excitebike made me jump at the chance to play a motocross racing game. Keep in mind I am being literal when I say that as Excitebike was the last motocross racing game I ever played! So did MUD capture my childhood memories? Was it an enjoyable experience that I can recommend to strangers I see on the street because I was so over come with joy?
In short: not quite. I did have fun with the game but not in the way I think the developer intended. See what I mean by watching my review below.
DISCLAMER: I played this game on Xbox 360. It is also available for Playstation 3 and PS Vita (as digital download). Please note that I DID NOT play online mutliplayer as during the time of my review there were internet issues which prevented me from connecting to Xbox Live. This review strictly deals with single player modes.
In one of our first E3 2011 previews we got our hands on the first official trailer for Wrecked: Revenge Revisited, a car carnage racing game from the same people who created “Mashed” and “Micro Machines v4″. In this romp, brought to us by 505 Games, there are no licensed cars or micro managing settings. Players just pick a car that looks cool take to the track and try to cause as much damage as possible! Players will have access to guns, missiles, land-mines, and can even call in air strikes to smite down their opponents! It sounds like a pretty good time to us! We will follow up with 505 Games at E3 2011 to get more info on Wrecked. Look for this game to be available on XBox Live Arcade and the Playstation Network.
A short while before the new year I was lucky enough to get my hands on a brand new 2011 Audi A8 4.2 courtesy of Circle Audi here in Long Beach. I’ll be honest. This was my first review of a German luxury sedan. Especially one with an MSRP of about $78,000 at base! The model I had probably hovered closer to about $92,000 with the options equipped.
Looking at the A8 is a bit of a conundrum. The car looks good but its styling is very subtle. It definitely sticks to Audi’s design DNA. Does it look classy and expensive? Yes. Does it look like a $92,000 car? Not quite… That can be a good thing or a bad thing depending on the type of person you are.
If you enjoy flaunting what you got and have a flair for the ostentatious then the A8′s looks probably wont push your mojo buttons. If you’re someone who wants something that looks nice but cares more about what you get from the inside of the car than the outside then the A8 was pretty much built for you. I’m glad Audi stuck with the latter style. You see, instead of spending a lot of time and money on designers to make the A8 look like an aerodynamic piece of jewelry that should be worn around a rapper’s neck; they put all of that effort into the performance, interior, and comfort.
When I first got into the A8 I was surprised at the contrast between the exterior and interior. As I said Audi A8 looks great on the outside but it looks certainly fall on the subtle side. As such I was expecting the interior to subtle as well. However, I was way off on that notion! While I haven’t reviewed any German sedans before this one I have had my share of drives in them and I can honestly say that the A8′s interior is one of the most luxurious set ups I’ve ever sat in. The interior design is classy, the seats are super comfortable, and there is plenty of room for all passengers. Most importantly the fit and finish is top notch. You can definitely tell that the interior was hand upholstered.
The interior controls provide options for just about everything you could want while driving. Although because of the level of gadgets it will take some time to get used to everything. Audi’s multimedia interface does help with learning curve but if you are going to pick up an A8 for your own I would suggest taking some time to get used to all the gizmos before you drive it. Once you have the hang of it then controlling everything from radio stations to navigation on the fly will be much more intuitive.
All the gadgets and seat massagers in the A8 are fun but the real magic comes when you start driving. First thing is first. The ride, as expected is buttery smooth. Which is comfortable, but also quite boring. Yet, it isn’t something that Audi has forced you to live with. Thanks to their dynamic suspension control you can change the ride to suit your mood and have the dampening and even the ride hight changed instantly. Now if you feel like re-enacting scenes from “The Transporter” you’re all set to do so if you feel inclined.
Motivating the A8 is a 4.2 liter V8 packing 372hp and 328 ft-lbs of torque which is just enough power to play with but not enough to get yourself into real trouble. Now, compared to some of the super sedans out there you may think that the numbers are a bit underwhelming. However, when you factor in the car’s weight (4409lbs) which is quite light thanks to its all aluminum frame the horsepower figure gains some significance.
Another benefit of the lightweight and having horsepower in the sweet spot is the fuel economy. The Audi brochure will tell you that the A8 gets 17mpg city and 27mph highway but in my experience if you drive smoothly you’ll surpass those economy numbers.
So, in a nutshell what do you get when you buy the Audi A8? You get a car that is a brute when you want it to be, smooth when you want it to be, relatively economical, comfortable, and will massage your back when you’re feeling stressed. Essentially, Audi attempted to make everyone happy with the A8 which is usually a bad idea but in this case they came pretty damn close…
As I mentioned a little while back Mitsubishi USA was kind enough to loan me a Evolution X MR not only to drive to SEMA in but also to tool around town a bit to see what I thought of it. I’m going to start off with my impressions on the car’s looks, because well, we’re all a bit superficial in that way aren’t we? Just me? Whatever, let’s move on…
The first thing to note is that this isn’t a “regular” Evo X (AKA Evo X GSR). This is an MR edition which stands for “Mitsubishi Racing” from what I surmise. However if anything the MR is more subtle in appearance than its brother. Gone is the giant wing normally found on the GSR, as well as the contrasting black grille which is color matched on our particular car. Also instead of the aggressive Enkei wheels found on the GSR the MR features BBS RGR-esque wheels.
The Evo X’s body lines do hold on to some of its inherent aggression which gives the MR trim a sense of reserved strength. Almost as if to say “I have nothing to prove to you.” Personally, I dig that.
The interior in the MR that I received was fully loaded with all the options. There is leather all around, including the SST shift knob and emergency brake handle. I got the full 710 watt Rockford Fostgate sound system complete with subwoofer enclosure in the trunk and touch screen navigation system, as well as the obligatory Recaro bucket seats.
Based on the price point ($37,995), performance (which we’ll get into in another post), and toned down looks one could assume that Mitsubishi is going after the BMW 335i buyer. Based on the superficial aspect alone I would say that the Mitsubishi is at least on the same level as the 335i but that is a subjective area. I love BMW’s but the current 3 series is a bit vanilla so looks wise I’d say the Mitsubishi Evo X MR edges out the BMW just a bit.
In the next post I’ll get into the performance aspects of the MR as well as my experience driving it to Las Vegas and back. Stay tuned!
This post marks a historic occasion for our little site as its our first car review! The story starts with me hastily packing for SEMA and suffering the poison fruit of my procrastination. Just when I was begining to worry about last minute travel arrangements Mitsubishi USA swooped in at the last momnet and saved me from the Greyhound by offering up a 2010 Evo X MR. Over the next few days I’ll be updating you guys with my impressions of the Evo X MR both here and on our twitter page @MotorworldHype (follow us!). Stay tuned!
Matt Farah pits the 2010 Lotus Elise against the 2000 Lotus Esprit twin turbo V8 in the latest episode of the Smoking Tire. Farah puts both cars through their paces on a canyon road and goes over the pros and cons of each competitor. In the end he can’t bring himself to pick a clear winner so he leaves the choice up to you. It’s a pretty good episode but if it were me I would have put the Esprit against the Lotus Exige instead!