Secure and Save before time runs out with Bitdefender Exclusive Clearance Offer! Get Bitdefender Total Security 2018 Now!
Eidos Summer Athletics
Go for gold
- Career and character-creation modes, excellent graphics
- Sports nerds may complain about definition of 'athletics', unevenness, disappointing multiplayer mode
Fans of licensed products will be better served by Sega's official Olympics game, but Summer Athletics is a simple, low-cost alternative that will provide hours of old-fashioned fun, with the bonus of excellent graphics and career modes.
Price$ 49.95 (AUD)
If the success of our Australian team at the Beijing Olympics gave you a taste for sporting glory, 49Games's well-timed Summer Athletics could be right up your street.
Conspicuously lacking in official Olympics branding, Summer Athletics is nevertheless a fun, varied game that evokes the spirit of the event in a cheap and cheerful way.
A sports nerd in the PCA offices (who shall remain nameless) insists that diving and archery don't count as 'athletics'. Thank goodness, then, that the developers took a wider view — these fringe disciplines are the most enjoyable parts of the game.
The fiendishly tricky diving in particular pushes things into the currently more fashionable realms of rhythm gaming (you have to hit sequences of buttons at key moments to pull off the moves, as in Guitar Hero), as opposed to the straightforward button bashing that drives most of the running and swimming.
Not that button bashing is entirely a bad thing. There's nostalgia value here, for a start. Fans of old-school track-and-field simulations will be pleasantly familiar with Summer Athletics' general principles: hit the left and right keys as quickly as you can to go as fast as possible. They'll also know how surprisingly addictive these techniques can be. Chuck in some superb graphics, an impressive range of sports and the variety offered by the more complicated events mentioned above and you have a winning formula.
There's some unevenness in Summer Athletics, however, as tends to be the case with portmanteau sports sims. The swim races, for instance, are very easy indeed — we sliced 17 seconds off the world record in our first, wrist-destroying attempt at the medley relay.
The team cycling, on the other hand, is bafflingly hard — as with several other events, the instructions make little sense. But you can adjust the difficulty levels in Summer Athletics, and it's actually nice to have a couple of events that are immediately accessible and others that reward prolonged practice.
A more frustrating issue is the disappointing multiplayer mode, which could have been the game's trump card and the saviour of the track events. What you want here is for all parties concerned to be allocated two buttons on the same keyboard and then tap away at once — hey presto, you've got a nicely raucous party game. Instead, with Summer Athletics you have to take it in turns.
Finally, the long-term appeal of Summer Athletics is improved by the inclusion of career and character-creation modes, allowing you to edit your athlete's name and appearance, gradually improve his or her athletic skills and unlock achievements.
Join the newsletter!
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Huawei P20 Pro review: See it and believe the hype
- 2 Nokia 6 (2018) review: Simple. Solid. Supreme.
- 3 Samsung Q9F Series QLED: Peak performance from a home entertainment heavyweight
- 4 Fitbit Versa review: New look, better price, same limits
- 5 Dell Inspiron 13 7000 2-in-1 review: Smaller form-factor, higher performance
Latest News Articles
- E3 2018: Every big game announcement and trailer
- Computex 2018: CoolerMaster have new a mouse that can count your kills
- Computex 2018: Everything new announced and shown by MSI
- Computex 2018: Razer open up RGB ecosystem and keyswitches to third parties
- Computex 2018: ROG up their game with new Strix II notebooks
PCW Evaluation Team
If you’re looking to invest in your next work horse laptop for work or home use, you can’t go wrong with the MSI GE63.
If you can afford the price tag, it is well worth the money. It out performs any other laptop I have tried for gaming, and the transportable design and incredible display also make it ideal for work.
Touch screen visibility and operation was great and easy to navigate. Each menu and sub-menu was in an understandable order and category
The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use
I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.
It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.
- Huawei P20 Pro review: See it and believe the hype
- Computex 2018: Nvidia launches new AI-focused hardware and software platforms
- Computex 2018: Everything you missed at Asia's biggest tech tradeshow
- What's the difference between an Intel Core i3, i5 and i7?
- Laser vs. inkjet printers: which is better?