It’s so good in places but so so bad in others
- Developer: Rainbow Studios
- Publisher: THQ Nordic
- Genre: Off Road racing
- Release Date: 27/3/18
- Platforms: PS4, Xbox One, PC
- Reviewed on: Xbox One S
- Game Supplied by: THQ Nordic
Some games just grab you by their concept and bikes and ATV’s have always done that for me, I’m certainly no enthusiast but firmly believe these games should be fun, enjoyable and a little off the beaten track.
MX vs ATV All Out offers bikes and ATV’s racing standalone and side by side in various disciplines from free roam, time trials, series events, supercross, arenacross to name but a few. High jumps, extremely manageable stunts can be performed with fast paced rider balance control which make MX vs ATV All Out a fantastic game and in part it is.
I love the way the game does not control what you have to do, there is a huge ranch which acts as your menu basically and enables you to select events, customise your rider and vehicles (more later), tune them but also go to training points to learn more about how to play the game or just roam around and practice without worrying about stunt points or times. In its concept it’s great .
Sometimes it’s all about the delivery, you most likely as I was, love all you’ve seen and heard thus far and are excited to start playing the game, well this is where it starts to go wrong, and not in some huge flaw but basic elements delivered badly that may or may not affect your love or indeed hatred of the game.
Let’s start with basics, riding the bike, easy enough, accelerate, brake, turn but the nice touch here is being able to control the rider’s body weight with extremely noticeable effect, you can take a corner much faster by leaning your rider correctly, by the same token when taking off and landing jumps your rider’s weight will affect your jump height and if you fall off when landing. All great but it’s how it feels and the bike responds in the arenas and maps. It’s very unpredictable, I’ve been sideways at mid speed and fallen off but also stayed on and straightened out, it’s just not reality. Other jumps I’ve landed some very small, what seems well poised for a landing can just throw you off the bike and there begins the 3 second delay whilst you watch the other 15 riders fly past you into the distance.
However it doesn’t end there, free roam is great, make your own path and get to the checkpoints to win the event but in the likes of supercross sometimes you can be just a foot outside the boundaries and your pulled up and again the wait begins to reset you when you don’t need it, you lost time going off anyway but can go straight back on no need for a 3 second reset. Other times though i strayed off into a rock, nothing to do but reverse but you would be expecting a reset and don’t get it, you can use reverse to sort out your trajectory again and set off but this takes longer. It’s insanely frustrating at times.
Now that being said it doesn’t always make for a bad experience sometimes it’s great but others will have you turn the game off in frustration.
Now visually it’s another mixed bag, some good landscapes and environments the unfortunate thing is only rocks and tree stumps seem to be real, grass doesn’t move, plants seem like holograms and you can ride straight through them again even the race boundaries are like holograms, this isn’t Mx vs ATV 2050. Visually there are issues with the textures, details on the landscapes are nice from afar but up close it really lacks detail. Trees are bland and generally it’s just very unappealing.
Bikes and riders have a nice look to them but again lack the detail up close, despite a nice amount of customisation on boots, gear, gloves, goggles, helmet, number and name adding a nice personal touch to the game it just feels unpolished all round.
I’m afraid it doesn’t stop there I’m mixed on the in-game sounds and music too, some great tracks from various genres but overall they didn’t get me very pumped, i ended up turning it off only to be left fully focused on what for the most part sounds like a lawnmower engine constantly grinding thought my ears. No crowds or finish line theatrics add anything either so it’s either bike or music, huge miss here by the devs to add a great atmosphere like Monster Energy Supercross I recently reviewed.
I presume your thinking overall im being a little negative towards the game and I suppose I am, there are lots of simple elements that make this game badly flawed, but moving past that and back to the events and just racing I have to admit it is good fun when it plays right.
I loved selecting jumps for some tricks even when they were not needed, hitting open landscapes in search of checkpoints was great fun and although you can literally come last and first in the same series it was enjoyable to play.
Events were not too long but you can change the number of laps anyway and overall it should be a really fun and enjoyable game to play.
Promising platform but unfortunately MX vs ATV All Out won’t be making this years top 5 racing games in my book, it falls short in too many places and despite their being potential for a quality title i had no desire to go back to it again