Along with the Tony Hawk 2 copy we also received the demo of Mat Hoffman which was enclosed in the game. This would be my first time that I would play this Tony Hawk based game since Activision has been somewhat hush-hush about it. Mat Hoffman as we all know is probably the most well known BMX rider, his biggest competitor in both real-life and videogaming would have to be Dave Mirra, who is another extremely recognized figure. I have played Dave Mirra Freestyle BMX for quite some time and I really found the game enjoyable and yet not too over-complicated. If you folks read my preview on Dave Mirra then you may have remembered me saying that Freestyle BMX may pose a big threat to Mat Hoffman, after playing the demo of Mat Hoffman I think that what I said may be true.
I can't strictly comment on the visuals since I only saw one stage, which by the way looked very nice. The biker models weren't just spectacular but they were much better when contrasted to those in Tony Hawk's Pro Skater. I like the textures, they really look nice, solid and best of all realistic. The bikes are detailed just as well as anything in the game, they look like real-life counterparts and some even feel like real-life counterparts. The bikes come equipped with pegs two on each wheel, if you didn't know pegs are what you would use to grind with with a BMX bike. You can pull off Ice-Picks, Tooth-Picks, Doublepeg grinds and many more. The game plays almost exactly like Tony Hawk's Pro Skater, the moves can be pulled off the same way by pressing either Square or Circle, (depending on what type of move you want to do) then by pressing a directional button.
My feelings towards Mat Hoffman are very good, it is obvious that this game is more reliable on its arcade style gameplay rather than the simulation aspect found in Dave Mirra. But having said that I can also say that Mat Hoffman is one incredible game, with Tony Hawk's qualities and a little more. In order for me to make a real decision I would have to play more of Mat Hoffman to really speak out on it, we will try to get a playable copy of the game from Activision as soon as possible. But for now since Mat Hoffman is slated for November, I suggest that you pick up Dave Mirra at the end of this month save up some coinage and get Mat Hoffman in November. If you do that then you'll be satisfied both ways.