The first four races of the actual MotoGP have been cancelled due to the pandemic, but the game is here to save the day. Can MotoGP 20 fill that void?
Racing titles have now hit a point where the visuals are almost as good as they can be, apart from when the developers try to incorporate a ‘create your own character’ and MotoGP is no different with one of the first options being difficulty shortly followed by selecting an avatar. These are decent, but fall flat in comparison to the vehicles and race tracks ironically. Thankfully you only need to see them in skippable cutscenes, so it begs the question, why include them?
The expected race options are there but as with any racing title, you will be aiming to start with the Career mode, which fortunately has been improved and has a few new additions. The mode now gives you the control of a manager as well as the racer. Choosing between hiring and firing managers or technical staff members each of which have certain skills that can push your development further in the Grand Prix.
Select between Moto3, Moto2 and MotoGP and work through the yearly season calendar. Test out prototypes of your engineering teams in test session races to select your preferred bike which can lead you down good or bad paths for the future of the races. The game gives you a massive amount of flexibility in difficulty and lets you play at the level you are happy with. Stronger or weaker AI, more accurate physics, manual gearbox or even fuel consumption.
The game defaults with fuel consumption on. It caught me off guard when I ran out of fuel and had no idea why. Realising less fuel allows you to go fast from the start of the race, or more fuel to help you last the full 6-8 laps (I played on easy) is a choice you can make. After the first failure I upped to enough fuel to last me 7.5 laps, which annoyingly also ran out after 5 laps of a 6 lap race. I then tried again and tried to pit-stop to re-fuel during a race, which just slowed me down and no fuel was added. Suffice to say, after the third failure I instantly disabled the feature. If it wasn’t so harsh it could have been an interesting thing to manage.
There are 20 races over as many countries, all have their own quirks and you can to the Free Practises and the Qualifying rounds in order to place ahead of the pack in the final race. The racing itself is almost perfect and well presented. I particularly enjoy the way the camera shifts to a broadcast style or the on board bike camera when you crash. Press ‘R1’ and rewind as much as you like on the easier difficulties and it is smooth as butter to wipe out any mistakes. Once you get in the rhythm of the races it almost feels like a ballet and you can fall into a zen state, a perfect game for a podcast.
Another addition is the ‘Historic Mode’ which gives you the option to earn currency by racing in historic events. There are 3 difficulties which disable the assist but give you more rewards upon completion. With the currency you can buy drivers or teams that are present in 3 random options ranging from Common to Rare. It almost feels like those football stickers you used to collect as a child but in digital form. I think those with a completionist mindset will get stuck down a rabbit-hole with this one.
MotoGP 20 is a solid game, but there are some features than can ruin the game for you. The further you get into the career you can do things that will mean your bike isn’t as good as the competition or the assists you are so used to will not allow you to win a race. The new additions are nice and a perfect title for a fan of the sport, but those who have no interest in Motorsports should stay away.,
- Replay Value