Review: DRIVECLUB Bikes (PS4)

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Title: DRIVECLUB Bikes
Format: PlayStation Network Download (14.7 GB)
Release Date: October 28, 2015
Publisher: Sony Computer Entertainment
Developer: Evolution Studios
Original MSRP: $19.99 (Standalone) / $14.99 (Expansion)
ESRB Rating: E
DRIVECLUB Bikes is exclusive to PlayStation 4.
The PlayStation 4 download version was used for this review.
A copy of this game was purchased by the reviewer.
PS Nation Review Policy

Golden Minecart Award Winner 2015
– Best Racing (PS4)

DRIVECLUB Bikes can be purchased either as an expansion for DRIVECLUB at $15.99 or as a standalone title for $19.99.

Gameplay:
The bikes you get are all high end superbikes from KTM, Yamaha, Ducati, Kawasaki, Honda, BMW, Bimota, and MV Agusta. As in DRIVECLUB, there is a full campaign to work through where you have to meet certain challenges to get stars. When you get enough stars your next tour location will open up.

You start out with two bikes. The KTM RC8 R and the Yamaha YZF-R1. With each bike you get three challenges. There are Time Trials for each bike as well as a Skills Run. In a Skills Run you go a certain distance with challenge areas such as doing a wheelie where you rack up points for how long and far you can hold the wheelie. The same applies to the stoppie section. Then you go on to hit a top speed with your bike. Each bike also has a race where you have to finish at or above a certain ranking to get a star.

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DRIVECLUB Bikes is a very forgiving game. When I jumped in I went all out as fast as I could through turns, which of course I couldn’t handle at the speeds I was going. You have to run the correct lines into and out of corners if you want to get a good time. You can go off the track but if you stay off for too long the game will throw you back onto the track. You can crash but you will never get thrown off of the bike. You will just restart in the middle of the track where you left the pavement.

As you work your way through the tour you will unlock more bikes, paint job and cars (if you own DRIVECLUB). You can customize your rider’s sex, helmet, leathers, and the bikes themselves.

… plenty to play without going into multiplayer …
One aspect of the game that I really enjoy is that there are community challenges. You can make up your own challenges and send them to friends or post them to the community. Most of the time they are time-based to essentially see if you can beat the fastest time on a certain track or section.

There is plenty to play without going into multiplayer if that isn’t your thing. Even without delving into the multiplayer there is plenty to go back and do in the game.

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Visuals:
Evolution Studios has made a racing game that looks so good that you can even get hours of fun just with Photo Mode. The game is just gorgeous. From the lighting in time of day to the weather effects that look real.

While you’re exploding through a final turn in the rain and watching the foliage you pass just whiz by you can’t fully appreciate how beautiful the game really is. Checking out the track before and after a race you really get to see the layers of realism they surround the tarmac with.

… It’s all exhaust and engine noise …
Audio:
I really enjoy the soundtrack to Bikes. The game audio is what you would expect from a motorcycle game. It’s all exhaust and engine noise mixed with squealing tires. It all sounds great as you’re racing around taking the corners.

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Online/Multiplayer:
The multiplayer section of the game is where you can race against friends or randoms. The matchmaking works well and you can usually find an open lobby and someone to race against. I haven’t run into any problems in the multiplayer. There is also plenty to play without going into multiplayer if that isn’t your thing.

… a great entryway into superbike racing …
Conclusion:
DRIVECLUB Bikes is a great entryway into superbike racing without too much frustration. As I stated above you still need to watch your speed while going in and out of corners but the forgiving nature of the game makes it loads of fun.

Score:
9.0

* All screenshots used in this review were taken directly from the game using the Share functionality on the PlayStation 4.

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  • Great review, thank you. I really enjoyed DC Bikes and I shall dip back in when the new tracks arrive sometime in 2016. Chuffed it won the Golden Minecart!