I can count my favourite PS Vita racers on one hand, and one of those is Ridge Racer…I think you get my point here. If it were not for Milestone bringing their console motor bike racers to the handheld the drought would be even dryer. MXGP: The Official Motocross Videogame is their latest release and features all the riders, teams, bikes and rules from the official MXGP 2013 calendar.
Motorcross is all about hurtling down a mud infested winding dirt track with the hounding opposition closing in on you like a pack of blood thirsty wolves. Only the ever increasing engine roars give you an indication as to which side their attack is coming from, in the hope of taking first place. MXGP gives you this excitment – well sort of. MXGP, like previous Milestone titles follow the same trusted pattern and layout you have come to expect, but this time around it does offer an extensive online campaign and a staggering lengthy trophy addition. If you’re wanting to Platinum this baby then you’re going be in for the long haul, if you can stomach the ride. Undoubtedly the main bulk of your race time shall take place in Career mode. The MXGP 2013 calendar sees you jetted across the globe taking part in two racers on each track with (or without) qualifing. Other modes include Grand Prix, Championship, Time Attack and online play.
Jumps, bumps, dips and tight corners certainly capture the true essence of Motorcross but with slightly less detail and realistic gameplay on offer to the console versions. The handling of your bike on the default setting needs minimal skill to manoeuvre so winning races becomes a doddle. Clunking into the opposition or taking a bend to wide and soaring off the track are your main concerns in an otherwise very arcady bike racer. It’s not until you change the bike set up to Pro Physic with manual transmission that you will see all that change. Here MXGP can go from an easy ride to a hardcore simulator with the bike reacting in a more realistic fashion. If you’re a motorsport enthusiast who wants a tough ride then this is for you. And with faster loading times, restarts are not so much a chore anymore.
Graphically MXGP dips in this department and unfortunately does not have the polished look MotoGP 13 gave us. Sure the tracks all look fairly detailed, even the pretty little cinematic clips introducing each country certainly muster up a bit of sparkle but it still all feels rather unspectacular. The audio misses the mark too, as there is a complete lack of in-game music. I’ve never been a fan of your usual bone crushing waking the dead type of death metal soundtracks that usually rip through such off road racers, but maybe something inventive would have been nice here. Furthermore, each exhaust emits sounds similar to that of flatulence each time you hit the gas. Once you’re out ahead in first place this sound does become rather tiresome. This biking outing for me can happily be played on mute.
For the trophy hunters it’s a constant ping as 49 trophies come pre sealed. But as I said there is one lengthy trophy standing in the way of completion, ‘Motocross Star’ requires you to win over 1000000 fans – so keep those goggles, shin guards and neck braces on for a little longer. Completing championships (18 rounds in total) on repeat may take the shine off this muddy motorcross experience.
Simulation racing veterans Milestone are constantly backing the handheld – which we must applaud them for, and while where’s nothing inherently wrong with MXGP: The Official Motocross Videogame I just feel we’ve been here before and got the mud stained tee shirt to prove it. But that said, weather it be Mud or Dirt, somehow off road racers always steal the limelight.
Lizard Rating 6.5/10