Twisted Metal Black Online
Genre Sport -> Racing
Today's Rank 31947
Date N/A
Publisher Ubisoft
Date 2003-06-11
North America Retail Box ArtCar games are great, especially fast car games, but add the additional novelty of high-powered weaponry and all of a sudden it's a whole new ball game--particularly if you can play against drivers from across Europe. Hurrah then for Twisted Metal: Black Online for the PlayStation 2, which drops the single-player mode and any attempt at a story line in favour of a stripped down but extremely effective multi-player experience. TM:BO provides the player with four game modes: the obligatory Deathmatch, Last Man Standing (similar to Deathmatch but once players are killed they don't re-spawn until the game's over), Collector--which involves gathering up items that are scattered around the place within a time limit--and Hunter, where one player must hunt down the others and as each gets caught they in turn assume the hunter's role. A wide variety of gaudily painted death traps have been included for the amusement of all, including a strangely disturbing ice-cream van driven by a lunatic clown who prefers to dispense fiery death then delicious icy treats. The graphics and sound are fairly solid, with the 20 arenas possessing plenty of scenery to drive around, over and through. Special mention needs to be given to the car models: select something heavy duty and a special animation kicks in that shows parts of the vehicle opening up to allow the gun of choice to pop through--classy. The music too is passable and a selection of spooky tunes complements the explosions, tyre squeals and engine-revving noises that proliferate. Overall, Twisted Metal: Black Online is a worthy opener to the Playstation 2 online experience. It's by no means perfect (the ability to speak to the opposition, SOCOM-style, would have been very cool) but the ability to play against breathing opponents rather than semi-dumb AI characters really lifts this head and shoulders above its offline peers. --Chris Russell

- 14 diabolically inventive vehicles
- 9 vicious battlegrounds to tear up on Single Player Mode
- Improved vehicle physics deliver dramatic jumps and landings
- Tons of weapons and combo attacks make for creative kills
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