Review: MotoGP 18 (PS4)

Review: MotoGP 18 (PS4)

Platforms:

  • PlayStation 4
  • Xbox One
  • Nintendo Switch
  • PC

Platform/Hardware Used:

  • PSN Download
  • PS4 Pro
  • HDTV

Extras:

  • DualShock 4 Required (1)
  • Move None
Title: MotoGP 18
Format: PSN (11.1 GB)
Release Date: June 7, 2018
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

The developers at Milestone have apparently gone back to the drawing board with their latest game, Moto GP 18. Everything from the engine to the physics has been reworked. But does this translate into a better experience?

Gameplay:
A problem I had with the last game is back. Now this problem shouldn’t be an issue in any game nowadays but it has reared its ugly head once again in Moto GP 18. What am I referring to? The number of characters allowed for the last name – here a measly eight characters. Plenty of people have longer last names, some of which are actual racers in the blasted game.

The AI difficulty can be set as low as a very easy twenty percent or an extreme one-hundred and twenty percent. At first, I opted for the medium forty percent mark and found it challenging so restarted the modes and lowered it all the way down.

Regardless of the difficulty, the computer-controlled opponents like to get too close and sometimes act as if I’m not even there. In several races, I watched in fury as an A.I. racer slammed into my bike, sending my rider catapulting from his machine and usually into last place. I managed to regain my pole position in most races.

I suggest keeping the assists on until you grow accustomed to the handling and speed of this game. Although having them all turned on, it feels too restrictive and safe, like an overprotective mother swaddling her baby in cotton wool and bubble wrap. It’s almost impossible to come off the bike on the easiest settings and I hardly had to lift my finger off the gas on some tracks.

Tire wear is now a thing in Moto GP 18 if you want the added realism. I didn’t want the added pressure, which is weird as I love all of that stuff in F1 2017, but I do like that it’s an option in the game.

A Drone Scanning System has been implemented to aid in the recreation of the courses. I have no idea if they look more authentic but it’s nice to see the developers going the extra mile. When some of the assists have been turned off the bikes do feel better and seem to react more realistically than the previous games, so their extra effort paid off.

All nineteen tracks from this year’s season are in the game, including the new Chang International Circuit in Thailand. That should please the fans. Another thing that will put a smile on their faces is the deeper Career Mode, which now feels more immersive.

Visuals:
The visuals for Moto GP 18 are nice but some circuits lack detail in the backgrounds and have little texture on the grass and traps along the edge of the track. The bikes and riders look good up close which, I suppose, is where it counts. The lower framerate makes this year’s offering feel a little sluggish but fast enough to still be fun.

I’m happy to see the people now blink in the cutscenes and there’s even more to see, with scenes of the parc fermé and starting grid making an appearance. I was also surprised to see the Umbrella Girls for the first time, and probably the last if popular opinion is anything to go by.

When pausing the game you have the option of a Photo Mode that does what you would expect and works well enough. I even used it for a few images in this review.

The weather is a nice improvement compared with last year, especially the rain. With some nice reflections in the puddles and realistic droplets on the screen and visor, it looks great. The character models look better too and there’s even an option to view your customized rider and bike in the menu.

Audio:
My bike sometimes sounds like an angry beehive and lacks some of the punch and power I would expect to hear. Although to be fair, I am no aficionado when it comes to these matters and it may sound exactly as it should sound.

The crowd noise is reasonable and I always like to hear the enthusiasm increase as I draw closer to the podium positions, although it happens no matter where I am on the circuit, which is a little odd.

Online/Multiplayer:
Public and private races are the choices in the multiplayer mode and on a few tries I was met with an error connecting to the network. When I managed to get it working I did notice an improvement to the online mode.

I often joined a lobby during a race and went straight into Spectator Mode. This lets you watch from a myriad of camera angles and locations. You can also view the Moto GP ID of your friends which displays a host of stats so you can see how well you are all doing compared with the community.

There is an eSports Championship mode but I steered clear of it since it wasn’t active at the time of writing this review. That, and the fear of utter humiliation.

Conclusion:
Moto GP 18 is a fresh new start that has ironed out many of the issues I had with its predecessor but it still retains a few wrinkles. One of those is the annoying ‘eight characters or less’ oddity that shouldn’t be in any game in this generation.

The graphics and gameplay have seen some improvements as well but it feels more like a good base to build upon and not a leap forward in terms of quality. The more established Career Mode and added cutscenes are very welcome.

Score:
7.5

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

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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