I waited 7 long torturous years for SSX to come out on the current generation of consoles. For many of those years I wasn't even sure they would make a new SSX but I never gave up hope. Granted every other fan of the series was in the same position I was, so what made my hype for the new entry special?
Well, extreme sports games are what made me the gamer I am today. I saw Tony Hawk land the first 900 in 1999 and have watched every X-Games since then. At the age of 12, I was meeting my half-brother for the first(and last) time in North Carolina. While in bed reading whatever gaming magazine was popular back then I read a review for Grind Session. "Holy crap! They make extreme sports video games, I need a PlayStation and I need it now!" So the next day I forced my parents to take me to the nearest store and used my life savings to buy myself a PlayStation and a copy of Grind Session.
The first game I purchased with my own money
The only games I owned for the original PlayStation were extreme sports games. The only reason I even purchased a PlayStation 2 was because they stopped making Tony Hawk games for the original. Shortly after purchasing the PlayStation 2, I heard through the gaming grapevine of a gem titled SSX Tricky. "They make snowboarding games now! Must own!!!" Snowboarding was easily my favorite extreme sport as it was the only one I was decent at. Shuan White was still a year away from taking the world by storm, so snowboarding had yet to become mainstream and for that reason I never expected to see a video game based off the sport. I played SSX Tricky every chance I got until they released SSX 3, then I played that every chance I got until they released SSX On Tour. SSX On Tour was a disappointment for me, I played through the entire game but it didn't have the same replay for me that the previous two iterations had. Throughout the life cycle of the PlayStation 2, I continued to stick with mostly playing extreme sports games, occasionally leaving the genre for a Scooby Doo title (don't judge, I'm a sucker for Scooby) or a game of Madden.
My current collection of extreme sports games, I have owned a lot more of them over the years but was stupid and sold a bunch of them
Come 2006, the Xbox 360 had been out for almost a year and the PlayStation 3 and Wii were soon to be released. I was still confident the SSX series was not yet dead and I knew if I wanted to play whatever the next game released was, then I would need to buy one of these consoles. The Xbox 360 won out partly because it was cheaper than the PS3 was estimated to be, but mostly because it already had Amped 3 released, the one extreme sports series I had not yet played over the years. I beat Amped 3 in a couple of days, during which time a new SSX had still not been announced (much to my dismay)! This is the moment I became the gamer I am today. There were no new extreme sports games slated to be released in the near future so it seemed time to expand my repertoire. I had heard that this game Call of Duty 2 was suppose to be good and I loved learning about World War II so I decided to check it out. I fell in love with a whole new genre of games and now I will play pretty much any game that sounds fun!
In 2007 SSX Blur released for the Wii and seeing no other option I went out (to 5 different stores!) and bought myself a Wii. SSX Blur proved to be even more of a disappointment than On Tour. For the next several years I satiated myself with other non-SSX games while constantly hoping that a new one would be announced. I would spend the most boring of my college classes day-dreaming of what a new SSX might be like. In 2010 my dreams were answered and the new SSX was announced. At first I didn't pay much attention to the media surrounding it as I was worried it either would be cancelled or be terrible and I didn't want to be crushed yet again. That all changed during E3 2011 when solid game play footage was finally shown and the game looked amazing! I was unbelievable excited, finally the game I had waited so long for would arrive. I constantly kept myself up to date on new information released about the game and checked every retailer to see who had the best pre-order bonuses. A week before the game was to be released, and the day after I had moved to a new part of town, I found the nearest Game Stop and pre-ordered a copy.
I love tricking off the heli!
SSX was the game I had waited so long for! Everything I loved about the game was still there. The outrageous tricks are still there and "It's Tricky" is still played after pulling enough crazy stunts in a row. Mac and Zoe are still playable characters and you can still customize the boards and outfits. They even made the race mode something I can enjoy playing and added the entirely new Survive It mode. The deadly descents aren't my favorite thing, but they provide for a nice change from the usual. I actually prefer the Global Events to traditional multiplayer and couldn't care less about the lack of a split screen mode. SSX was well worth the 7 year wait and while I hope they release a new one sooner than before, at least now I have games in all genres that I enjoy to keep me busy.