It’s time to hit that track once more with the release of Monster Energy Supercross 3. Milestone are back again with a new racer and these guys are love their 2 wheeled racers and why not, they do great job! Do we get a racer that is all it can be? It would seem so on the surface..
With Supercross 2 you get a strong single player mode that offers quite a bit with a Career mode, Single Event, Time Trial, Compound, Championship and Challenges. However, you will probably spend most of your time playing in the Career mode. In your career you can choose from either a male or female rider, and then you start your career by choosing your team and what bonuses they offer you and your sponsor. At the start you are offered a small challenge which you can choose to play or leave for another time or drop it altogether.
With each race event you compete in you will earn credits from your sponsors who are looking at you to get the most out of each rest. So, what can you do with these credits? Quite a bit, as these credits are used to purchase new helmets, suits, gloves and more, plus you can customise your bike by adding improved parts for your beast. When you are finished tinkering with your bike and clothes, you can also change up some of the settings like changing the difficult of the other riders on the track and improved gameplay physics like changing the braking system.
If you decide to drop the career or it’s not your biscuit, you can try out the other modes like Single Event which lets you pick an event like a Showdown or Single league to ride in. Then you can try your hand at the Time Attack mode to see how you fair against the best of the rest. Also, there is a Compound mode where it is set in a kind of free roam mode that sees you driving about a dirt site that is being currently built for a new stadium or racetrack. I thought this was a cool mode to have and you could bounce around getting to grips with the bike and the games mechanics to help you improve your game. Lastly, we get the Challenges, which sees you trying to navigate through gates as you complete a course or race head to head against a rival and more.
On the other side of things, we have the Online mode and to be honest I found it to have quite a lot on offer with us being treated to Lobbies List, Public & Private Lobby Creation and Race Director. The Lobbies List is your bread and butter where you pick from a list of lobbies that are available to you and you can jump straight in to play a game. There were times however, that I couldn’t join a game and it would take quite a bit to join one. I would have preferred a quick match option so that we would be able to just jump in and play asap…
In the custom private/public lobbies you are free to set up some interesting events and they can be a lot of fun. This are more like side events like a treasure hunt which is a bit weird in a racing game, for me anyway, especially since it’s not an open-world racer like the Forza Horizon series. To finish off the end modes is the Race Director, which when I first saw it, I thought we would be running some events and spectate them. However, these are races that lets you set up and choosing what rules and penalties you would like to have in your events.
For a bonus you also have a cool powerful editor that allows you to create the track of your dreams, edit and prepare the bike and customize your avatar. I did like using the track editor, but I wouldn’t be the greatest at it. There are those of you out there that will be real masters at it and I look forward to seeing what the community comes up with.
Once you set foot out on the track you will notice how well the game looks, with the stadiums filled with screaming fans, roaring music, fireworks and the occasional light shows. I was really impressed on how the gameplay was and even more so in the rain as the more you race around the tracks, and you tear up the course with your tyres, these indents can fill with water as the bikes try to navigate around the tracks. Which can make the track more slippery and you will find yourself fighting against the track as well as the other riders. The bikes themselves handle well as you race across dirt and sand in the different arenas and locations.
While out on the track you can noticed that there is no actual or cosmetic type of damage that happens to your bike or those of your fellow riders. Everything looks almost pristine as if you only started the race and I feel that it would have made the game more fun if there was some damage or failures in the game to contend with. I know that Supercross is not that type of game, but it could have added that little bit more to it. While the track can get altered slight as you race due to the bikes ripping up muck or mud, I would love to see more added in a future title.
What I also noticed is that the AI riders that are racing with you can sometimes forget you are there. Here you go flying around a corner with your left peg out and then whack, one of the other riders swipe you off the track and sometimes leave you at the back of the pack. Often on certain turns and jumps they show no regard to you and push you out of the way, while other times they will just stop dead on the track or fall for no apparent reason whatsoever. Also, there are times when you get close to the barriers, that you only just have to slightly graze them, and they will throw you a couple of feet away from your bike. This for me was extremely annoying, especially when you are in the top positions and are looking for that valuable win, only for your bike to slightly nick the barriers and you are off your bike. Thankfully, it doesn’t happen too often, but when it does, it’s still annoying!
What I love about Supercross 3 is that it has a perfect balance between arcade and simulation in terms of the gameplay physics and handling of your bike. You can change the bike physics where you can then let game hold your hand while you just go out and have fun, or you can pick apart it yourself. You can adjust the compression on your wheels, change your gear ratios to get that extra bit of acceleration or change your brakes, from Joint to manual. Like I said, it’s all a learning curve, but a good one. I found the more I played, the better I improved and wanted to play more.
The bikes can also be customised and spruced up a bit to suit your own unique style which you can have matching your rider gear. The rider can change the look of their helmet, gloves, boots and even their butt pad, or their bum pad, whichever you feel more comfortable saying it 🙂
When all is said and done and you are looking to do something else, Supercross 3 gives you a Track creator/editor. For those Supercross fans that love to design your own track, this is right up your street. I really liked using the editor and found it very user-friendly to mess and tinker with and create my track. While it may not be anything amazing, I felt a sense of accomplishment once it was done and I got to ride around it on the bike with some AI riders. Plus, you can upload your newest creation online and have the community test it out themselves and see what they think of it!
I can just imagine the madness of some of the tracks that some of the community will be hankering to build…
Playing Monster Energy Supercross 3 is a blast and while I found it had a bit of a learning curve that was steeper than I thought, once I got to grips with it, I loved playing it! Graphically the game looks great (I was playing on Xbox One X) and while it doesn’t set the world alight, it does immerse you into the game and Milestone has done a fantastic job! While the game does have its issues regarding the AI, if you can overlook it, you are in for one hell of a ride!
Grab your gear and your bike, cause it’s time to get dirty!
GoG Rating: 8/10