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Monster Jam: Path of Destruction


This game is definitely for those born with gasoline in their blood, and is really male oriented, because frankly, it’s cars, they are big, and they are noisy. Making donuts and jumping 20 feet in the air with these trucks is pretty satisfying.

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“Be ready to rumble!”, “You’re flying bro’!” “Really tearing it up out there!”, “Spinning like a torpedo!” and “Faaaantastic deestruction!” is just some of the inane bromides, narrated by Scott Douglass, that sparkles up when you perform different stunts.

The laydown

There isn’t really a story attached to the career mode. You get this overview of north America and the stadiums pops up in their respective places as you unlock them by progressing in the game. In each stadium there’s a row of different events to choose from, all known from real life monster truck events.

Monster Jam: Path of Destruction | Screenshot

Activision licensed the game to use the look and names of the real life monster trucks. I’ve seen very few shows (I enjoy them, but they aren’t a common interest in my country) and it was really fun to see and make use of the trucks in the game – I’ve always preferred the real deal over something made up, that being a sports game or a racing game – Fifa and NASCAR games comes to mind when talking about this.

The game actually has a great learning curve, which surprised me quite a bit because it feels a bit cheap at certain points. Most of the things you have to do is pretty straight forward, and the very few more complicated movements is learned through small challenge events just before a bigger event where the skills are useful.

Events consists of different challenges from plain circuit racing over checkpoint races to freestyle. In freestyle you have to do various stunts with your truck, from simple moves such as smashing the carwrecks in the arena to making slap wheelies and flatspins in the air. In time crunch you have to use your skills to reach the checkpoints as fast as possible, and in stadium racing you have to reach your own goal before your opponent reach their goal.

Monster Jam: Path of Destruction | Screenshot

Personally I found the freestyle events to be the most difficult (I restarted those the most) but also the most fun ones. I had to think in advance; what stunts to do, and where in the arena were the possibilities, and then; what stunts do I miss, and can I do those before time runs out? The rest of the events were more straight forward, race the other contestants, drive through checkpoints and so on. The races were what I dreaded the most, I simply didn’t like them because of several things; the course was narrow compared to the size of the trucks – there is not enough space for two trucks side by side, and frankly, it annoyed the hell out of me when I was trying to overtake another driver. Fortunately I found a trick, and that was to stay close to the other truck and overtake in turns, when there were more space, cutting the curve.

What's going on?

The gameplay is playable, but I could have used burning and blown engines. Hurting the wheels enough would make them jiggle and eventually fall off, crippling your truck heavily. Clipping is also a part of the experience. Nothing that ruins the game per se, but something that aches the eye when watching it happening in slowmotion.

Monster Jam: Path of Destruction | Screenshot

Voiceover is kind of stereotypical, yet suitable – I couldn’t find any valid sources that confirmed if it’s the real life Scott Douglass that hosts/commentate at the monster truck events in the game. That doesn’t matter, the voice is well chosen and is just a tad enough annoying to be fun and suitable for a game such as Monster Jam: Path of Destruction. Graphics could have been better, and soundtrack is all right, while sound effects, such as engine sounds are tedious, and won’t really make any gamer go “WOAH this truck has some powaah!”.

I quickly discovered that this title never wanted to be a triple A title. But also the developers jumped over the lowest point of the fence when it comes to the small details – it aches me every time I see something small as clipping is – it should be pretty easy to avoid or at least correct, shouldn’t it? When my truck is getting stuck on the same place several times, it’s getting really frustrating. I enjoyed this title, don’t get me wrong, but I hardly believe that I’m gonna pop it in too many times in the future.

Monster Jam: Path of Destruction | Score
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Oh hai and welcome to my small corner on the internet! I am a gamer at heart, and I love to write - so what's better than doing this? You can also find me streaming games on Twitch, being opinionated on X and sharing screen shots on Instagram.

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