Video Game / Dark Summit

Mysterious military experiments are being performed on a ski resort. As an undercover snowboarder, your job is to expose and put an end to them. Fortunately, the military has a mole working on the inside to provide you with information on their shady doings, and give you objectives.

That's the plot of this rather obscure 2001-2002 PS2/Gamecube/Xbox game by Radical Entertainment, which combines snowboarding with adventure. You're not just snowboarding for the sake of it, you're trying to stop The Man!

The sports elements are all there - you can perform tricks, the courses are designed for you to try your hand at risky stunts, and you can string combos together. All these earn you experience points. The adventure elements come from the many mission objectives, the plot, the many secret areas and alternate routes on the mountain, and the "ski lift points" you collect by performing missions, which earn you higher positions on the mountain, as well as advance you farther in the game.

The game has a foreboding soundtrack to go along with the whole "mysterious conspiracy" theme, but it's played a bit tongue-in-cheek. Frequent loudspeaker announcements warn skiers not to go poking around where they don't belong, and there's a lot of animosity towards the game's rebellious snowboarder heroes.

This game provides examples of:

  • And Your Reward Is Clothes: Earning experience points lets you buy extra accessories, such as a CD player, shades, and so on, as well as new outfits.
  • Bears Are Bad News: There's rumors about a man eating bear on the higher parts of the mountain. You actually encounter it for one mission. Though it's not the bear that you have to worry about...
  • Fat Bastard: Chief O' Leary. In fact one of the early missions involves wrecking his lunch, which consisted mainly of a whole chicken roughly half the size of Naya.
  • Fake Longevity: You'll be traveling down the same long mountain (from one of four different starting positions, leading to different ending positions) many many times. Missions are found on the mountain, and since you can't backtrack for obvious reasons, you'll have to find new missions by going back to the start position and going down the mountain again. Slightly mitigated by the ability to check in to any of the other ski lifts to pre-emptively end your run without having to go all the way back down to base camp.
  • Government Conspiracy: What the 6 snowboarders are trying to uncover on the ski resort.
  • Hero with Bad Publicity: Even though you're only trying to expose the experiments and conspiracy going on at the ski resort, the other skiers don't like you and often shout things at you.
  • The Mole: Your missions are given by someone working at the ski resort.
  • Marathon Level: At one point near the end the chief gets tired of your snooping and decides to call someone in to kill you. You then have to race him to the base of the mountain in order to keep him from putting in the call. Seeing as you get this mission at the beginning of the Summit dropoff point and all the other dropoff points become disabled for use while the mission is on, this means you'll have nearly fifteen minutes of snowboarding ahead of you to get all the way back down to the very base of the mountain. Thankfully this mission is otherwise relatively easy if you know your way around the mountain, as you can't be eliminated through contact or by falling too far behind.
  • Obstacle Ski Course: The snowboarding variety, although you do encounter skiers on it.
  • Potty Emergency: One mission is to reach an outhouse within a time limit.
    Voice: "Did you try that chocolate bar Hans just gave you? It was a bar alright, but it sure wasn't chocolate."
  • Product Placement: of the Nokia kind. Any and all calls are made and received with a (then new) Nokia 2310 phone.
  • Rich Bitch: Rachel and her brother Hans.
  • The Voice: Whoever the military mole is that's giving you missions.
  • Weirdness Censor: Even with all the strange markings on the ground, big piles of radioactive waste, and many other things going on, the skiers don't seem to notice. And if they do, the loudspeakers tell them not to.
    Loudspeaker: "That was just a weather balloon!"
  • You Have Failed Me: After being beaten down and forced to spill information, Chief O' Leary ends up vaporized by his upper management, leaving nothing but his cap and goggles behind.