Here, we've got a bunch of gameplay videos and a developer Q&A for the Wii version of Shaun White Snowboarding, subtitled Road Trip.
EA's Shaun White Snowboarding on Wii sounds like a bit of cut-down cop-out on paper, with none of the Test Drive Unlimited-style online integration of the other versions, but we had a go recently and its bloody good. So make sure you sit yourself down and concentrate on the vids.
Here's the dev Q&A.
Can you give us a summary of the game's storyline?
You and your friends travel the world trying to hook up with Shaun who's plans to go on a snowboarding road trip with you were foiled by last minute obligations. You follow Shaun's path from Canada to Chile and eventually in the Alps, Japan and the U.S. trying to meet up with him, which you eventually do. Along the way you meet knew friends who have in their own way something to bring to the road trip. As a rider, each friend contributes in his own way to your growth as a snowboarder. In the end you realise snowboarding is more than just riding down the mountain. It is about friendship and sharing the life of a snowboarder with others.
What were you going for in the character's design?
We really wanted to have a good variety of characters that would visually differ from each other. It was really important since we wanted to have entirely different personalities for each of them. Also, we did not want to use real people. We could have simply taken some of the real pro snowboarders out there and tried to caricaturize them to our style, but it would have made our characters less authentic. When I write for characters, I prefer creating my own rather than trying to shape a personality around a real person's. It is more creative and way more fun.
Can you explain the emails and mementos?
Our game being a snowboarding road trip, we were thinking of ways for the player to identify himself as a pro snowboarder on the road. Since today's riders often use cell phones and personal laptops to communicate with friends and loved ones, or for professional use, we thought adding an e-mail feature would enhance sensation that you are really out there, and that people are trying to get a hold on you, wherever you are. So that was it for the emails. For the mementos, it was a way to reward the player but also to give him a few souvenirs of his road trip. Just like some people apply stickers of places they've been to on their luggage, most snowboarders love to keep souvenirs as well.
We've seen pictures of your character's vehicles evolving in the game. Can you go into detail on this?
We start the road trip with an old beaten-up Van and with only two characters, but as you explore the world looking for Shaun, you meet more friends who join the road trip. With more and more friends joining, you need a bigger vehicle to hold that many people, so we had to come up with various ideas and concepts to find the right ride for the right country, and for the right amount of characters. I'm happy with the final vehicles and how they turned out to be. The team has worked extra hard to try to bring not only what was needed in the game but also to bring some elements of humour and personal touches here and there. It was a really fun project to work on and I hope people will appreciate it.