Review: MotoGP 17 (PS4)

Review: MotoGP 17 (PS4)

Formats:

  • PlayStation 4
  • Xbox One
  • PC

Format/Hardware Used:

  • PSN Download
  • PS4 Pro
  • HDTV

Extras:

  • DualShock 4 Required (1)
  • Move None
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Title: MotoGP 17
Format: Blu-ray Disc / PSN (11.4 GB)
Release Date: July 11, 2017
Publisher: Milestone
Developer: Milestone
Original MSRP: $49.99 (US), €69.99 (EU), £49.99 (UK)
ESRB Rating: E
PEGI: 3
A copy of this game was provided by the publisher for review purposes.
PS Nation Review Policy

I have only very briefly played a MotoGP game. As with most of the older and cheaper games I buy, it was lost in my proverbial pile of shame after I had a quick five minute go just to check it worked.

It was many years ago and could have been on PlayStation 3 if memory serves.

Gameplay:
MotoGP 17 has a long install, but at least you can jump into the Quick Race mode while the rest completes.

I had one quick race in Qatar in which I managed to get halfway through the pack before crossing the finishing line. The assists seemed to hold me back a bit too much and I struggled to get ahead in the short three lap race.

After delving into the Management Career mode and using my own character and bike that I had created earlier, I muddled through the first few weeks of my calendar and did a quick PR stint and a couple of races. I say created but the options were quite limited and I couldn’t even fit the final letter of my last name into the input area.

In between races you select to do various activities and tests, which is just selecting from a few choices that boost your reputation or funds or improve your research and development if you happen to be working on an improved part of a bike, for example.

Aside from hiring some members of staff on short contracts, there isn’t much else to do. You can recruit new drivers and buy them a bike to ride, and that is pretty much it. It’s an enjoyable, if a little basic, mode but welcome all the same.

I did briefly allude to the assists but glossed over exactly how smothering they can be. When playing on easy it can be difficult to fall off the bike, not impossible, but it almost feels like you’re in a tank, a very fast tank. I strongly suggest leaving the easier difficulties and assists for the younger audience.

At the other end of the scale, the pro difficulty and no assists make the game extremely sensitive. Any wrong move and your rider will smack into the tarmac. At least mine did, constantly. I guess I’m too used to the four-wheeled racing machines.

Once I adjusted the assists it allowed me to finish a qualifying race in first place consistently. This was much to the delight of my unblinking pit crew, yes you read that correctly, not a single person has eyelids and it freaks me out. I should have probably saved that for the visuals section of this review, but I don’t care.

I briefly played the Rider Career to see what that entailed and was surprised to see the exact same thing as the Managerial Career mode, just without the team management aspect. I don’t know what I was expecting but they are basically the same. And that’s it, no other modes, no weekly challenges or tutorials, nada, zilch, nothing.

Visuals:
I like the representation of speed and the sixty frames per second help to make it look smooth. There’s very little pop-in and it only seemed to be at the start of a race.

The trackside details are a little sparse in some locations and the grass definitely looks too flat. That might just be the fault of the courses themselves, but with twenty-seven recreations, there’s enough variety and spectacle with some of the more famous locations.

I do like the Photo Mode accessible from the Options menu, yet it does have a few caveats. Mainly the inability to get too close to a bike and its rider and only a few basic filters.

My main criticism is with the rather odd and limited player creation choices. I chose one that looks a bit like a serial killer and that was the best one. I still find it bizarre that after several years of the PlayStation 4 and High Definition televisions being so prevalent that things like this are still an issue.

Rain looks embarrassingly bad. Although you do get some reflections in the rain soaked ground and the water spray from the tires is okay, it’s just the actual rain that disappoints.

The light bar changes to represent the state of play and if you are revving up before the lights turn green then you will see the bar flickering red and orange, it looks good, especially in a dimly lit room.

Looking at the graphics overall I think MotoGP 17 looks a bit dated now and other racing games do a much better job with their fancy new engines and effects. If I recall this latest game looks to have the same engine as the old one I played on the PS3, just with cleaner and more detailed graphics.

Audio:
The sounds of the bikes are nice enough although I don’t really have much experience with the sounds of a race day event. I doubt fans of the genre will complain, and the menu music is alright too.

Online/Multiplayer:
There’s a nice selection of online modes and even the opportunity to partake in the PlayStation 4 exclusive eSports championship. That’s if you can find the website and register your times, as there is no mention of it in the game itself.

I was able to create my own lobbies and make them private, public, quick join, and browse all of the lobbies for each mode. The quick join seemed to kick me back to the menu more often than not and that was with all the filters set to the more forgiving “Not Important” choices.

Browsing the lobbies resulted in the most success when trying to find a race or championship to join and each event I played was without incident, apart from my pitiful performance and embarrassing crashes.

I’m happy to see a local split-screen mode that works well. The graphics take a little hit but the speed is still there. Sadly, the head and helmet viewing choices are not present in this mode either.

Conclusion:
MotoGP 17 seems to lack some of the excitement of the dangerous high-speed sport but it’s a solid and enjoyable game nevertheless. I had fun playing the game but being new to the franchise, never felt all that welcome. The graphics are good and the speed is nice but it looks desperate for a fresh lick of paint and some dazzling effects.

Score:
7.0

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

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Written by Chazz Harrington

Chazz Harrington

You can find me on everything: PSN, Twitter, Wii U, Origin, Steam, etc using my universal ID: ChazzH69

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