- December 2nd, 2016
- Xbox One / PC / PS4
When Steep was announced it has the potential to reclaim the extreme sports section for games that is otherwise largely untapped since SSX is no longer a thing. Once released as well that it was more than just a snowboarding game, fans were quite excited. Does the game reach the potential it could though or does it fall straight down the mountain side?
From the start the in game world looks vibrant and full of activities. You can seamlessly jump from area to area around the mountain at ease and use your binoculars to scout new locations and zones to drop off from. You can also click and teleport to various events across the various activities you are able to do. Navigating the map can be troublesome at times. Though you can zoom in for some precise details at time, having to drag your cursor around while it constantly snaps onto every marker on the map.
It starts to quickly be apparent that the game becomes shallow. Under its looks and premise of races and going down the slopes against others you quickly see Steep’s true colors. You never race against others, AI or otherwise. All races boil down to simple time trails. You also have events where you need to do tricks and such to get a medal. If you get stuck on a race or anything however your only option is try over and over to get that bronze, silver, or gold. This all can become tiresome and repetitive rather quickly knowing that especially during single player races that you are ultimately just racing the in game clock.
Another thing that hurts as well is that you can beat races, get XP, and level up but at no time does it ever feel like you are building towards anything. You can unlock challenges but new ones are mostly little changes on what you’ve already been doing. New boards and gear carry no changes other than cosmetic and since races can start to feel the same over and over you’ll quickly wonder what your reason for wanting to push forward or go for gold is. It doesn’t help either that the game has a little learning curve with a forgettable tutorial and a in game menu that never tells you or shows you how to work it.
The one thing Steep really does succeed at is just providing some great intense moments. Using the wing suit to race down the mountain just barely missing the ground can be intense. The same can be said for starting at the top of the mountain and using the snowboard, racing your way down hitting every big spot and pulling tricks off like nothing. These free open world moments are more enjoyable than any event the game has to offer.
Visually and audio wise though the game for the most part is stunning. The wide open mountain side looks great and racing down a mountain side gives you one of the most realistic wind sounds a game has possibly ever offered. Sadly though this all starts to take a dive once you see how buggy and glitchy the game is. Expect to get stuck on small objects and clip into other things. I had my rider get stuck on invisible objects more than a few times. By far the worst part of the game is that it has a good tendency to crash out of no where. I was mid race and mid free roam numerous times when out of no where the game would just shut down and put me back to the Xbox dashboard.
Overall though Steep can be fun. The open world has its moments where it feels so great. Sadly though once you actually look into the game you quickly see how shallow it truly is and that, along with the bugs, is what stops Steep from truly reaching what could of been.
Score : 6/10