Ford Off Road is what Test Drive Unlimited would be like if you took out all the really cool cars and removed the sense of freedom. You start off with the choice of a Land Rover or a big Ford pick-up to drive around the desert - hardly the most hair-raising selection of full-blooded motoring.
And things don’t get much better. The game is split into three rough parts. Events start off in a dustbowl - yellow - and then slowly move to take in mountain scenery - grey - before some forest - green/brown - then they wind up skittering over some icy plains - white. It’s hardly the most inspired colour palette, and its drab nature suits the game. It’s dull. Insipid. Throw all those colours into a paint mixer and you’d doubtless get a foul bland beige, the most boring colour known to man.
Maybe it’s the vehicle lineup, all four-by-fours. Made by Ford. So no Porsche Cayenne. You do get a Range Rover the size of a Challenger tank later on. Or it could be the utterly lackluster races on offer, some of which set pointless tasks like collecting almost invisible ‘artifacts’. Oh no, wait, the worst part is the horrible handling. It’s the way the cars handle like shopping trolleys, with no palpable sense of feedback from the terrain you’re riding over, and so where there should be giddy joy at throwing expensive cars through muck there’s nothing; except a sore thumb. It’s like waking up in bed with Ray Romano.
Mar 21, 2008