Like previous ones in the series, this arcade biking game once again provides a fun, if sadistic, challenge for those who understand the importance of trial and error. In Trials Rising, you ride a dirt bike through an obstacle course that's clearly been designed by a maniac who doesn't just want you to fail, but die trying. That's why you have to navigate a series of jumps, loop the loops, collapsing ramps, exploding barrels, and other hazards. Not only does this require split-second timing, but players also have to determine how much gas to give their bike, as well as whether to lean forward or lean back, or sit center mass, to keep it from flipping over. It's a good thing this game has intuitive controls that, well, don't make it easy, but at least they're not against you too.
As for what's new in this sequel, Trials Rising adds a mode in which you and a friend sitting on the same couch each control only half of a bike. This adds yet another level of challenge, though also a level of frustration if you and your partner aren't in sync. Not that it's necessary, as Trials Rising is plenty challenging already, with the new courses being as clever and outlandish as the ones in previous games -- doubly so if you forget that one is in a Hollywood movie set and "Oh, no! The aliens are attacking!" All of which is why Trials Rising, like the previous games in this series, is as good a test of reflexes as riding a dirt bike through the apocalypse.