Another year, another MXGP game from Milestone. But with a switch to Unreal 4, is there a massive boost to the graphics or realism?
Milestone’s usual format to the career continues, starting you off in the junior MX2 class with your own team, allowing you to either take it to the top or earn a drive at an official team (the game has the full MXGP and MX2 licenses) in your quest for the MXGP championship. Whilst there are some customisation opportunities, these are purely limited by cash, and your team manager only speaks to you for a few tutorials.
Even the faux magazine covers and pretty generic emails and sponsor opportunities with hilarious fake companies like ‘parmigiano reggiano’ have been mostly stripped out, leaving an even more bare bones experience than last year. Technically, there are now some real sponsors like Tag Heuer, but there’s almost no in-game benefit to them.
Tutorials also take a step backwards, with videos mostly replaced by some step-by-step guides, so the only way to get up to speed is by playing the game, probably by driving around at the back in your first few races of the trial championship season. These first 3 races only seem to exist to make your first full season less embarrassing.
There are some more basic control options, and more difficulty options, but on the very basic settings, the game will still be too hard for many. Having played last year’s game though, I quickly got bored and started to ramp up the difficulty and physics simulation. Bikes then require a delicate touch of the throttle, and to succeed, you really need to manually control both front and rear brakes, located at LT and A respectively. More advanced players can then move on the controlling their rider’s stance using the right stick, although you can definitely get away with this on the basic physics setting. The game does seem to handle a little better, and the fact that the tracks deform as the race goes on certainly adds in a little extra challenge when things get really torn up.
The AI has certainly seen some improvements though, as they can at least avoid you regularly. That doesn’t mean they are realistic though – they drive hard, fast, and on the best lines. They are efficient robots, and little more.
Content has actually been reduced from last year, whilst with many of the MXGP tracks remaining the same, it feels like an all-too similar experience throughout the career. Even the developer tracks from MXGP2 have gone, and the MXON content seems like an afterthought this year.
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