TransWorld Surf Preview
You probably won't find too many surfers unless you live along the coastline of California or the beaches of Miami; therefore, surfing games usually aren't a top priority for developers because the sport isn't quite as popular, as say skateboarding or snowboarding. However, there is a nice little niche of hard-core surfers, and Angel Studios plans to treat them with a videogame rendition of their favorite sport. Enter, TransWorld Surf.
TransWorld Surf is plentifully filled with gameplay modes. On the single player side, there are ProTour, Single Session and Free Surf, all of which are pretty self explanatory. In 2 player mode, you can chose from FreeSurf, Competition, King of the Wave and Shark Attack. Shark Attack is a tag-like game, which is exclusive to the PS2 version.
Angel Studios has designed some great looking levels spanning across 10 real-life locations. In all, you'll be able to taste the waves just about everywhere from San Francisco, to Hawaii, to Australia and even Tahiti. In addition, the PS2 version gets another exclusive, this time it's a level, which takes place in the waters of Mexico, and no the water won't be brown, although that would be quite funny.
There will be 13 top pro riders included in the game. For those of you who are familiar with the various pros, there's Taj Burrow, Shane Dorian, Andy Irons, among others. You've got to wonder though, how the stats aspect of the game will affect the different riders pertaining to their performance.
Arguably the biggest part of the game will be how the waves are incorporated. Looks, feel, pattern, and realism will all come into play in this surfing title. As of now, the water does look fairly good, as does the backdrop. The waves' sizes vary greatly from level to level, and depending on the intensity and height of the waves, it will also affect your performance noticeably. As you go through the levels, there are tons of odd missions to complete such as saving dolphins, stopping the monstrous sharks, and many other interactions with a broad variety of sea creatures.
Surfing isn't one of the more popular sports around as far as video games. Heck, it isn't even in the upper half. However, so far it's looking as though surfing fans will get everything expected from a surfer title and maybe even a bit more. You can look out for TransWorld Surf next month, March.
2/21/2002 Joseph Comunale