It looks like there is a great chance for GameCube to have SSX.
Are you ready for a special edition version of SSX for Gamecube? You had better be. Full story.
December 11, 2000
Last week IGNcube reported that EA Canada had received Gamecube development hardware and was already deep in benchmark testing -- with impressive results too. At the time, we had no word on what possible software Electronic Arts was planning for Nintendo\'s console, if any, but now we do.
A leak within the huge publisher has now relayed to us that EA is internally working on a revamped and enhanced version of the PlayStation 2 title SSX for Gamecube, called simply SSX: Special Edition. That, despite earlier reports that the firm had plans to outsource all of its Gamecube content. The game, which we assume is being created at EA Canada (as it has development hardware and created the original SSX), will allegedly feature extra boarders, tracks and "other goodies," according to a source close to those involved.
Interestingly, we\'re told SSX: SE will be used by EA as a testing ground for any future Gamecube products to come. Supposing the project goes well from a development standpoint and then, more importantly, enjoys a decent amount of retail success, the company\'s "Big" label will include Nintendo\'s platform for its next offering -- a rumored extreme mountain biking game.
As always, we contacted Electronic Arts for comment and received the typical response: "EA does not comment on rumors and speculation."
Crazy Taxi may very well be coming to the PS2, and from my perspective, nothing good can come of this. Now, before I get all emotional, let\'s break down the rumored "facts":
Acclaim owns (or owned) the Ferrari license in the United States, and therefore AM2 and Sega needed them to publish Ferrari 355 Challenge. Why Acclaim wasn\'t willing to just take the game and make free money off of it I don\'t know, but there was some more provisions to the contract. Acclaim was allowed the rights to three Sega arcade games, allowing them to port them to other systems. They chose Crazy Taxi, 18 Wheeler: American Trucker, and Zombie Revenge. Why the last two? Who knows, it\'s Acclaim…
So, Crazy Taxi will likely be the only game to get ported in the deal, and Acclaim Studios Cheltenham has been given the task of porting the game over. After a little digging, I found that Cheltenham\'s last release was RC Revenge for the Playstation, a sequel to Re-Volt. Re-Volt on the other hand was developed by Criterion Studios, the folks behind the Dreamcast games Trickstyle, Suzuki Alstare Racing, and Deep Fighter. While Re-Volt was a great game in its Dreamcast and PC incarnations, it apparently sucked on the Playstation. So, the sequel was given to Cheltenham Studios, and they changed the feel of the game to a more arcade styled racer.
Cheltenham Studios\' next release will be RC Revenge Pro, a PS2 port of the Playstation game. It\'s being billed as the third game in the series, but IGN.PS2 said in its preview that it\'s really the same game, with one more track and slightly improved graphics. Now this is when I start to get worried. IGN.PS said in its review of RC Revenge that it had only average Playstation graphics. Now IGN.PS2 is saying that Cheltenham\'s port only looks to have better resolution, with the textures and all remaining the same. So how will they be able to handle porting Crazy Taxi, with its great graphics and textures, to the PS2? It\'s well known that while the PS2 is a more powerful machine than the Dreamcast, it has a wildly different architecture and smaller texture RAM. Now, it\'s true that the better developers have figured tricks involving the main RAM and the blazingly fast data bus to get almost limitless texture memory out of the PS2, but with the track record of both developer and publisher, how well can this port possibly turn out?
Sega handled everything with Ferrari 355 Challenge I believe, handing Acclaim the finished game to simply box and ship off. Crazy Taxi is an entirely different situation. The game will have to be rebuilt from scratch, because DC code simply won\'t run on the PS2. The developer will have to work with the complex PS2 hardware, and figure ways to make it all look good, all the while keeping the same great feel of the game together.
If this rumor does indeed come to fruition, we may very well see a terrible port of Crazy Taxi on the PS2 come next winter. Now you may say, who cares if the Sony fanboys get an old Sega game on their PS2s, we\'ll already have Crazy Taxi 2! Well, I see two major problems. First off, Sega\'s brand recognition will be damaged, in that people who know the Crazy Taxi name from the arcade or even Sega\'s own commercials, will see the game for PS2 and get confused. They may think Sega is publishing games for PS2 now. Or they may think other companies will be porting Sega games over. Either way, the Dreamcast\'s major selling point, Sega exclusive games, will be tarnished. Uninformed gamers may end up buying a PS2 for Crazy Taxi, as parents and casuals will just be getting around to a next generation system by next Christmas. Though admittedly that\'s a bit of a stretch, it\'s not far from the truth.
The real problem I see with this lies in my strong feelings that Crazy Taxi will be massively underwhelming when it hits the PS2. A Playstation2 owner who may have been considering picking up the DC, might decide to try Crazy Taxi first, and then maybe get a DC to play the sequel. A crummy PS2 port will sway a lot of gamers from the Dreamcast, affirming their beliefs that it sucks and Sony is the only way to go. I see this as the crux of the problem, and the major way it could hurt the Dreamcast both with naysayers and those gamers sitting on the fence.
On top of that, it hurts those of us diehard Segans. I love Sega, they are my gaming company, and I\'ve been with them since Sonic first hit the Genesis. I haven\'t owned anything but Sega consoles since the NES. I absolutely HATE the idea of seeing a Sega game go to a competing system, even if it will be over a year and a half old by then. It takes from us that which we hold dear, Sega exclusive games, and is a step in the wrong direction. Sega may not have any plans to publish for other systems, or to drop out of hardware manufacturing after Dreamcast, but there\'s certainly been too many rumors about that in the past. Sega definitely doesn\'t need a Sega game on PS2, adding fuel to those old fires and discouraging gamers from buying their systems.
P.S. Remember folks, this is still a rumor, but it is the best and clearest rumor of a Sega game on another console that I have ever heard. Odds are it will come true if Acclaim doesn\'t go bankrupt first, but you should still treat this as a rumor.
[Edited by ElAsesino on 12-11-2000 at 11:16 PM]