|Genre||Publisher||Release date||Release O.S||Available on|
|Racer||Nordic Games||28/10/2014||PS3, Xbox 360||Amazon Store|
To me it still seems odd that publishers are putting out games for the last generation of consoles whilst ignoring the key future ones. It made sense to begin with earlier in the year but by now surely all games should be coming to Xbox One and PS4 at the very least too. MX vs ATV Supercross is one of those games to skip the current generation which might mean it’s overlooked by many. Would you be missing out though?
This may be the fifth main entry in the now approaching ten-year-old-series (along with a handful of spin-offs) but the first without publisher THQ at the helm. Now being overseen by new publisher Nordic Games, original developers Rainbow Studios have gone through hell and high water to get their latest motocross title into stores. After the closure of THQ, cancellations and delays has the long, arduous wait been worth it?
Now I’m no expert on the art of motocross (or supercross for that matter) but I’ve certainly enjoyed the odd race or two here and there on television. For those unfamiliar it’s essentially about racing around a dirt track on a motorbike or ATV whilst also navigating a series of ramps and jumps. In that regard the game seems to nail the authentic look and feel of the sport, engines growling, dirt flying, flashes from the crowd’s cameras and real life sponsors and racers at every turn. The level of detail is surprisingly decent.
Racing feels solid enough with the two forms of vehicle feeling different to one another. Motorbikes while easy to manoeuvre are prone to toppling when landings are a little off while the heavier ATVs offer more stability in your riding, handy for those still getting used to the jumpy nature of the races. It can at times be fun to best your opponents, battering into them at every turn, but the lacking sense of speed and samey environments mean this feeling is short lived.
For those playing alone, the career mode is where you’ll likely want to explore. Sadly this entire mode feels like nothing more than a series of single races with no real involving aspects to it. You’ll pick a racer, vehicle and event to tackle, finish five laps on each track and be “treated” to the same podium finale (complete with awkward waving animation every time) should you place well enough. There’s a real lack in customisation which feels like a complete wasted opportunity, a deficiency in variations on race types and basically a lack of any real excitement at all. It also doesn’t help that there are a meagre seventeen tracks to take on – a low number when you consider the likes of racers like Mario Kart, Forza and even DriveClub.
Online multiplayer meanwhile allows up to twelve racers to battle it out on the track – a neat addition in theory but when testing this feature out I had a very hard time finding a room with the maximum number of contestants. Maybe it’s just early days, but judging by the game’s sales, I wouldn’t be surprised if the online side of things here is relatively quiet from here on out. To go from the lively community of Mario Kart 8 to the barren wasteland here feels like a huge step back.
Visually the game is extremely underwhelming, riders rigid in movement and tracks always murky and unimpressive. I guess for fans of the sport this is perhaps an accurate representation of the environments, however for most it will merely feel like seventeen very similar looking tracks complete with bad looking crowds and poor textures. Audio wise the game fairs slightly better with a pop-punk focused soundtrack and engine noises that will soon begin to grate on the ears.
MX vs ATV Supercross feels out-dated right out the gate especially when compared to the likes of today’s racing competition. The murky visuals, often boring racing and streamlined features result in a game that’s easily forgotten and a sign that perhaps this series is better off left alone.
- Seems like an accurate representation of the sport
- Authentic sponsors and riders
- Murky looking visuals
- Dull career mode
- Uninspired racing
- Online community appears dead