Hip Hop, love it, hate it, it truly is taking over not only the movie industry but also the world of video games. With games like the Grand Theft Auto series we have seen how this popular culture has really made a significant impact on our industry and how it doesn’t seem like it is going to go anywhere anytime soon. So now that we know this "hip hop" genre is starting to develop, we have a game today that is totally going after the hip hop crowd in 187: Ride or Die for the Xbox. So does this game manage to make you want to run out and purchase this game? Read our full review to find out!
This generation of consoles really has not been host to many action racing titles like the previous generation of consoles where we saw a ton of these style games. For example although at its core a bit different the old Twisted Metal series reminds me a lot on the outside of this game 187: Ride or Die because of the kind of racing this game has and all of the action as well. But even with the lack of action racer games here on this generation of consoles 187: Ride or Die try’s to fill that gap.
I have no problem with the whole hip hop world, I don’t personally follow it a whole heck of a lot, but when I do I must say that I have seen a common trend that also happens in this game. Similar to the old westerns where someone would die/ get shot, and you would have to avenge their misfortune, the same has been true in a lot of hip hop movies and games like 187 Ride or Die. In this game you play the character of Buck, who is part of this gang with Dupree, who is wounded by a gang leader and it’s your job as Buck to really defend your gang’s area and bring justice back. So I mean as you can tell the story isn’t all that exciting and although the voice acting is authentic, the language in this game is absurd. The amount of profanity that pours out of this game is absolutely ridiculous and in my opinion was un-called for.
So you’re in the main mode of 187: Ride or Die and now it is time to really sit back and see what this game is made of. Well you go through level after level, racing around exactly what you would expect, and this is a pretty typical arcade racing that controls like every other arcade racer on the market. The only difference is throughout the track there are little power ups, if you will, that will allow you to take out your opponents on the track. Now you have control of where you point your attack but beyond that, the whole "action" is not incorporated all that excitingly. I say this because I felt like before this game the action would play an important part in the overall scheme of things and although it is a big part in the game it just is no where near as exciting as it potentially could have been.
The story mode itself is not all that deep and in my really never has any steam to start the race and I am not sure if it ever crosses the finish line either. I just felt like the whole story in the game was jumbled together into one big mess that was not only not interesting but really instead of making the game better, ended up making things much worse. The game also had a problem with making you do the same missions over and over in different forms and since none of us are dumb we are not going to fall for that trick.
The game does consist of co-op (which includes Xbox Live support) in the game and this is really where the game picks up a lot better. I found that in this case the gunner, that is the person on top of the car shooting at the opponents, has a much more significant part in the race, and this is where the game shines the brightest in my eyes. But unfortunately the game lacks in this category a bit to as there are only a handful of different ways to play this game and that just seems to get tiresome after sometime.
From some of the preview movies I saw of this game, I really thought as a whole this game was going to look great but the overall presentation really went much below what I had in mind. The games car models are nowhere near as detailed as a lot of the cars we have been seeing on the Xbox, and I must say they could have used a lot more variety in that category as well. The game however does run very smooth and from my experience didn’t experience any hiccups or any frame rate issues, which is always a good thing.
Overall the visuals of 187: Ride or Die are just mediocre with plenty of room for improvement. With the colorful nature of hip-hop I really expected a lot more then what was given in the presentation of this game.
I must admit even though there are a lot of dry moments with this game that just don’t seem to flow all that well together, the whole overall picture of this game is that there are some memorable and fun sequences that can occur with this game. I must say that while playing co-op or online you will find that this is where the game really shines bright and you can see that this game had a ton of potential but none of it was grasped well enough in the single player portion of the game. So I would say if you always have someone around like I do then you should have some fun with the multiplayer options of this game.
I am really disappointed to say that this game just did not reach any of the potential that it had set out for itself. I am not sure if this game didn’t turn out because of time or money, but for whatever reason 187: Ride or Die is a below average arcade action racer that has some good multiplayer fun but besides that just misses out on a great opportunity.
The owner and editor-in-chief of Darkstation.com. I've been apart of the website since 2002 and purchased the website in 2010. Owning and running Darkstation is a dream come true. I love video games and I love writing and talking about them even more.