Hands-on: Get your tricks out for the lads

First off, Pure has a serious disrespect for gravity. It might look ultra realistic on the surface but you only have to see one of the game's mental jumps to see that it's not going to let the boring constrains of the real world effect it.

If only the real world was more like Pure: winding race tracks with ramps that throw you off Grand Canyon-like cliffs, a moon-like gravitational pull that lets you lick the O-zone layer before pulling you down and humans with the ability to break dance in the air. That's the formula for Black Rock Studio's racer and we're liking it a lot.


Pure is all about stunts. Three of the controller's four face buttons are for stunts, although at the start of races only the A button - the most basic trick button - can be used.

You launch into the air by pulling down then flicking up on the right stick as you leave a ramp, then combine A with any direction on the left analogue to pull of some snazzy tricks.

You stunt to charge your boost meter, which activates the second and third tiers of stunts on the B and Y buttons respectively. The bigger the stunt, the more boost you earn and when the boost meter is full you open up the opportunity to pull off a 'Special Trick' by tapping the left and right bumper buttons.

With enough air to complete a special, you slam the bumpers and watch as your rider flies through the heavens, throwing his arms and legs around like he's at a rave.

While flying though the air you get slight control over your flight path, guiding the bike to a safe landing. Despite the game's gorgeous looks - and yes it does look as good as the screens in motion - it's a totally arcade experience.

The bikes are easy to control, fairly forgiving in their landings and impacts with other racers, and the game packs a fairly decent illusion of speed too. Fancy blur effects and darkened outer edges emphasise your increased pace.

It's chaos with 15 other racers on the course though, especially as you charge off the line towards the first jump. You all bundle over the ramp, launching into the air like a swarm of noisy bees and come crashing down on each other. It's like the first turn on the Monaco course in a Formula 1 race.

But, also like F1, the racers tend to space out after a few bends, so you've got more room to breathe. Gladly, though, there seems to be far less rubber-band-style catch up than in Motorstorm, so if you actually drive well you won't be hounded by CHEATING CPU bikes. You feel rewarded for driving well, and that's why this isn't just Motorstorm with ATV bikes. It's faster, higher and easier to play than Motorstorm.


We played three courses in the game - all three of which you can see in our exclusive videos below.

Timber Falls is set in the rocky canyons of Wyoming, with trees lining both sides of the course and some spectacular hilly views.

Lake Garda in Italy plays host to a greener course, carved into the mountains alongside a picturesque stretch of water. And the Sandy Mountain course takes you to Mexico, with a bumpier, more challenging track to throw your ATV around.

The exact number of courses to feature in the full game is yet to be confirmed, but Black Rock promises to take races through a wide range of other terrains in locations around the world.

We also took a peek at the custom bike creation tool, which allows you to piece together your own bike. As you select everything from exhaust manifolds to body parts, wheels, paint colours and stickers, you can see your parts being bolted to your bike's bare frame. Slick. Save your creation for use in both single-player and multiplayer modes.

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