Hydro Thunder: Hurricane was developed by Vector Unit and published by Microsoft. The full game retails for 1200 Microsoft Points. The Tempest DLC pack retails for 400 Microsoft points. A copy of the DLC was provided to us for review purposes.

Back in August, we reviewed Hydro Thunder: Hurricane for XBLA and gave it a Try rating. This wasn’t to say the game suffered from significant flaws, but we questioned if the game could hold attention long enough to match its $15 value for the majority of players. Clearly it could, as two months later, the game’s online community is still thriving and Vector Unit has released their first piece of DLC.

The Tempest Pack for Hydro Thunder: Hurricane contains three brand new original maps (Atlantis, Castle Von Boom and Bermuda), two new, original Boats (the super agile Whiplash and the slip-slidery Psyclone), one new skin for every boat in the game, six X-Boats (upgraded to expert versions of current boats) and of course 50 additional Gamerscore.

Each of the new tracks is on par, if not better than the tracks released with the game. In Atlantis, players race through the sunken city in a three lap race were new pathways become available each lap. Castle Von Boom adds in an interesting cross -traffic mechanic and massive explosions, as players will dodge exploding barrels, cannonballs and other boats. The track features a unique design where each lap requires going back and forth through a middle segment causing oncoming boats to meet in the same pathway. Bermuda expands the insane weather of Storming Asgard as player’s race through the open seas and eventually through a whirlpool where all hell breaks loose.

The two new boats match up nicely with previous boats offering players to chose something new that may match their style better. Vector unit realized that online play is dominated by expert boats and quickly rectified the situation releasing the X-Boats. This brings the total of expert boats up to 11 now. Not only that, but they added a few new designs to the game.
All in all, this is a great value for fans of the Hydro Thunder game. The new tracks are great, and if you enjoy player against other players, the X-Boats are a necessity and something we wish had been included in the original game.

XBLA Fans Score: Buy!

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