What is Monster Jam: Crush It!?
Monster Jam: Crush It! is an authentic recreation of the Monster Jam experience, with gameplay that divides into two very different halves - the stadium challenges, which capture the glitz and glamour of Monster Jam, and the hill climb mode, which works more like a monster truck based platformer, and is about as crazy as you might expect. With a total of 24 of your favourite monster trucks on offer, from Grave Digger and El Toro Loco to Monster Mutt, there's a great choice of vehicles on offer, and everyone will find a favourite.
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How do you play Monster Jam: Crush It!?
As mentioned above, Monster Jam: Crush It! is a game divided into two parts - the stadium challenges, and the hill climb. The stadium challenges are further divided into either races, or freestyle events. The races are brief and challenging, as you wrestle with your monster truck to stay on track across a course littered with bumps and jumps, racing against a computer player who makes few mistakes. Freestyle events, meanwhile, are like monster truck ballet, as you're given an entire arena to play with, and earn points for any airtime you can grab from jumping off ramps, but lose them for any time you spend either stationary, or reversing.
The second - and more substantial half of the game - is known as Hill Climb, and plays quite a lot like motorbike-based-platformer, Trials. Here, you'll need to navigate your monster truck through a platforming style course as you try to get from A to B in one piece. The trick here is in controlling your throttle - hit bumps and jumps too fast, and you'll be off the ground for so long, you'll lose your momentum. You'll need to stay on the ground for as long as possible if you want to get to the end in the quickest time possible, and earn a medal.
How easy is Monster Jam: Crush It! to pick up and play?
In terms of accessibility, Monster Jam: Crush It! is pretty easy to pick up and play, as the game has been designed so that a younger audience can get involved without too much hassle. Exactly how easy it is depends largely on which mode you're playing. The stadium events use a very exaggerated physics engine that can make it easy to flip your car, and difficult to drive it in anything approaching a straight line - although flipping an out of control monster truck is also a large part of the fun.
The hill climb events, on the other hand, are a lot simpler, as they actually have very little in the way of controls. Your car mostly drives in a straight line, and the only major input you have is in the throttle. In mid-air, you can control the attitude of your car, tilting forward and backwards by using the analogue sticks, to make it that little bit easier to hit those crucial jumps, but for the most part, the game is all about being careful with the throttle - easing off as you approach big bumps, before hoofing it over flat bits, or as you approach a jump, with the simple controls making it easy to pick up and play.
While there's nothing in the way of an adjustable difficulty level here, you do only need to get a bronze on each stage to move on to the next, which isn't too tricky in the hill climb events, although it can prove challenging during races.
With nothing in the way of violence, swearing, or sexual content, there's nothing at all for parents to worry about in Monster Jam: Crush It!
Format Reviewed: Playstation 4