Billabong Surf Trip: Tiago Pires is stoked!

The Surf and Gaming media got its first hand’s on look at Billabong’s new surf video game yesterday in the conference room at Bong Headquarters in Irvine California.

Billabong Surf Trip was received by both members of the surf media and gaming editors and bloggers from all over the gaming world.

“My overall experience with Billabong Surf Trip was a good one,” wrote Matt Dunn from the prestigious game site Touch Gen. “The waves are sweet, the controls are solid, and the various maneuvers actually require some skill and timing to pull off.”

The game is a joint project of Apple, Chillingo (the top video distribution group) Biodroid and Billabong. It will be out sometime later in the season, and looks like it has caught the interest of both surfers and gamers with some interesting new features.

“It’s the first game to have wave technology that changes features not only at every surf break but on every wave,” said Brad Vandenberg, Billabong Graphic Designer who has been playing a prototype of the game for several months now. “It makes it a unique surf game.”

Billabong Surf Trip: crazy aerial game
Top surf stars Taj Burrow, Maya Gabiera and Tiago Pires were also on hand and gave the crowd some of their thoughts on how the game had been developed from the surf aficionado’s viewpoint.

“Biodroid, the developers of Billabong Surf Trip, said they spent almost 6 months on the algorithms for the procedurally-generated waves in this game, and it definitely shows,” wrote Matt Dunn.

“I’m a big video game water nerd, so when I’m impressed with water in a video, it definitely says something.”

Meanwhile, play online surfing games.

Forestry Beach: the longboarder's dream

The 2010 North Island Longboard Championship event will go ahead this Saturday 11th September 2010 at the primary location of Forestry Beach.

The long range forecast is predicting a 1 metre North East Swell with North - North West winds which should provide suitable conditions to run the event. Forestry is a North Swell magnet and has had consistent banks through all tides in recent swells. High Tide is at 9.30am on Saturday morning which will start the day with an increasing swell all day.

With a 32 strong field in the Open Men's division including current National Champ Dylan Barnfield and a handful of NZ's top longboarders, along with a full draw in the Juniors, Women's and Over 50's, the event will be an eye opener for both contestants and spectators.

Registration and Event Briefing will be from 7.45am on Saturday morning at Forestry (contest area will be set up) with the first heats in the water no later than 8.30am.

Please see event location map showing location of event. Mangawhai township is 15 minutes drive north of Forestry and has all amenities. Please contact Hannah Howard for more information on accommodation etc. The Prize giving will be held at the Smashed Pipi Bar and Cafe in Mangawhai Village after the completion of the event.

If conditions deteriorate there is a slim chance ( very, very slim ) that the event may be shifted to another location ( West Coast ) We will ensure to notify all competitors of this no later than 5pm on Friday night.

Kolohe Andino: how good is that?

Kolohe Andino (San Clemente, CA), 16, won the Association of Surfing Professionals (ASP) Grade-4 Nike 6.0 Unsound Junior Pro over Nat Young (Santa Cruz, CA), 19, in Long Beach, New York after a marathon day of competition in peaky one-to-three foot surf to take an early season lead on the new ASP North America Pro Junior Series ratings.

Surfers competing on the ASP North America Pro Junior Series are out to finish atop the regional ratings to qualify for the prestigious ASP World Junior Tour and the Nike 6.0 Unsound Junior Pro’s heightened ASP Grade-4 status will play a vital role in competitors overall standing for the season.

Andino remained focused on his wave selection throughout the event’s entirety despite the tricky conditions and his patients paid off, putting Young in a combination situation in the Final to take out the Nike 6.0 Unsound Junior Pro victory.

“Everyone was surfing so well and I’m just stoked to have ended up in the Final,” Andino said. “There are lots of waves out there, but wave selection is such a huge part of surfing heats. I just tried to focus on myself and focus on my wave selection.”

Andino hopes to carry the momentum from his ASP Grade-4 win to the first stop on the ASP World Junior Tour, the Oakley Pro Junior in Bali.

“I’m really excited about heading to Bali and I’ve been working with my shaper Matt Biolis on getting my boards ready,” Andino said. “I’ll be traveling with Luke Davis and my Dad and it should be fun, I can’t wait.”

Young, who posted the highest heat total of the day, a 16.40 out of 20 in his Quarterfinals heat, was in top form throughout the event’s entirety, defeating fellow Californian Conner Coffin (Santa Barbara, CA), 17, hungry Hawaiian Tanner Hendrickson (Haiku, HAW), 17, and ASP Pro Junior standout Keanu Asing (Ewa Beach, HI), 18, but was unable to find a rhythm against Andino in the Final.

“The tide got really high and the wind switched offshore,” Young said. “Everything that could go wrong went wrong for me out there. It was tough. I’m bummed. To make it to the Final and lose is always hard.”

Conner Coffin (Santa Barbara, CA), 17, tore through the opening rounds of competition in the small punchy waves on a magic contest board, but was unable to find the scores needed to surpass Young in the Semifinals. The explosive regular-footer’s equal 3rd place results sets him in excellent position on the ASP North America Pro Junior Series ratings.

“I’m super excited on this result,” Coffin said. “I missed the World Juniors by one spot last year, so I’m psyched on this as my first result of the new season, especially since it’s a Grade-4.”

Coffin, who earned a wildcard berth into the first event on the ASP World Junior Tour, the Oakley Pro Junior in Bali, will turn his focus on preparing for the event once he returns home.

“I have a wildcard from Oakley into the Bali event and hopefully I can get a wildcard into Narrabeen if I do well in the first event,” Coffin said. “I hope we get some waves at home and I can just surf a lot and maybe do some yoga to stay flexible before the contest.”

Balaram Stack (Long Beach, NY), 18, earned his career-best result at his home break and put on an excellent performance before falling to eventual Nike 6.0 Unsound Junior Pro winner, Andino in the Quarterfinals.

“I surf here every day and to have the best surfers here at my home break has just blown my mind,” Stack said. “To take them to the city as well and show them around has been amazing.”

The equal 5th place result earned by the native New Yorker puts him in excellent position on the ASP North America Pro Junior Series and he hopes to carry the momentum on to the next event, the Fins Pro Junior in New Jersey.

“I’m psyched on this result,” Stack said. “I’ve only made the Quarterfinals a few times and to do it in a Grade-4, the points are really good for my rating. I’m looking to do well in the next few events.”

Nike 6.0 Unsound Jr. Pro Final Result:
1 - Kolohe Andino 15.50
2 - Nat Young (USA) 10.70