If you are like me and you love motorcycles and racing, but can’t afford your own bike, this is the game for you. If you have a games console that is.
I have had Ride 2 in my games collection (a whole lot of 6 games) for a month now. If you had to ask my fiancée, she would admit it was not easy to get me away from the TV, thanks to this game.
It’s brilliant, far better than I expected. The visuals are beautiful, one of the best, if not the best in terms of visuals, that I have seen in a racing game. The start-up page is a view of handlebars, when loaded and you press start, the bike starts up. The dials of the bike move as they would when you start up the real thing. It’s all really well thought out. Clever little things like this make the game what it is, and make it a great experience.
There is a lot of attention to detail in this game. As I mentioned, the visuals are brilliant. The bikes come up on the screen and as they rotate around, the light catches the frame of the motorcycle, and you can’t help but just stare and get sucked in. This is however, also where my first issue appears.
With game developers under pressure to push titles out as soon as they can, it seems mistakes are made. I have come across a number of glitches. The first was when I wanted to add a new exhaust to my new Kawasaki ZX-10R, the pipe just disappeared. I realized as I went on that this was an issue with a number of the bikes. This was unfortunately one of a number of glitches I would discover along the way. However, if you do have an internet connection, a patch can be downloaded that will sort out these issues. Not only that but you can also download awesome new content, the likes of the new Suzuki GSX-R1000 for example.
In terms of bike knowledge, you can learn a lot playing this game. Ride 2 offers over 200 bikes from 18 of the most recognizable manufacturers. Each bike has a spec sheet alongside it as you choose your machine from the massive garage. The garage, unfortunately, is not as great as I would expect from a game in this day an age of outrageous development capabilities. Let’s be honest, I am no game developer, but I would think that by now we are past the standard picture menu styled ‘garage’. Surely we should be given the chance to have an actual garage space displaying all our bikes that we have raced for hours on end to earn. Maybe I’m just to hopeful?
Staying on that note. I used to love playing Need for Speed, with its more, ‘free world’ styled map. It would be so great to be able to ride the bike to each race, back to your garage and be able to explore a map on your new machine. Again, maybe I’m too hopeful, then again, it’s been done before, so why not for in the Ride franchise?
Back on to a positive note though. There has been a genuine effort to make Ride 2 the most realistic riding experience possible on a games console. The tracks are beautifully laid out and just like the bikes, great care has been taken in making the tracks as close to the real thing as possible. From some of the most famous road tracks (not the Isle of Man unfortunately), to the most iconic Racing Circuits, the likes of the Macau Grand Prix circuit and Nurburgring. You are sure to be kept busy for hours and hours trying to master each. Drag racing and SuperMotard are also available, which in their own right, are a ton of fun.
In terms of the game modes on offer, there are your standard quick modes and multiplayer for you to get straight in to the experience. The true test however, is in the World Tour Events. Here you will be able to compete in Seasons Events. You will race in different series at different levels, racing everything from SuperMotards to Hyper Bikes and Pro Racers. Throughout the seasons you will earn reputation to climb the rider rankings, and earn credits to spend on new bikes and parts.
After completing each season, you will be invited to race in an invitational event where you race against your opponents to take home the main prize, a new bike, of which there will be two to choose from if you win. During the season, when you have won a specified amount of medals, you will be able to race in a championship for each different series.
I really enjoyed the customization side of the game. Being able to change the appearance of my bike, make it quicker, sleeker, more agile and throw on a fancy Akrapovic pipe. Not only that but customizing your rider’s appearance with a large selection of apparel from the world’s top brands. A really great feature of the game allows you to keep two track racing riders, a SuperMotard rider and two road riders, fully customized in their gear, so you don’t have to constantly go back and forth changing them all the time between races. Just simply pick one and go.
All this being said, it is easy to see that Ride 2 will keep any fan of the motorcycle well entertained. I for one struggled to pull myself away from the game. I was constantly saying to myself, “Just one more race.”“Actually, I’ve got time to finish another series of races.” It is not something that happens very often with racing games as they do tend to become rather monotonous. Luckily, that can’t be said for Ride 2 from my experience thus far.
I really do recommend, if you are a motorcycle fan and you have a gaming console, pick this game up and give it a go. Trust me, you will find it difficult to put that remote down. Anyway, time for me to get back to my game.
My word on Ride 2.
(Featured image credit: Ride Game Facebook page)