Monster Energy AMA Supercross 3 FIM World Championship: The Official Video Game to give the game its official title is the latest installment of off road motorbike racing from Milestone continuing with the tradition of alternating between this title and the MXGP series. By now you can be sure that Milestone now have a proven track record in developing the series and have polished them by now, however, haven’t we seen all of this before?
Well, in short, yes we have. Last years installment of the series saw new features brought to the first game, but it also had issues. The issue I had with this years release for me was all the bad aspects of last years game seemed to rear their ugly heads again and the good things were gone.
Its the same old routine, the career mode gives you the chance to work your way from zero to hero against other riders on official tracks, but before starting on that journey you need to win a qualifying race within your compound; easier said than done when the annoying physics from last year are still there. What I mean by that is the one major thing that annoyed me last year was even the slightest collision with the edge of the track and your rider goes flying over the handlebars and that really needed addressing, but seems it hasn’t been! Hurtling into the first corner and I was pushed wide by other riders, my rear wheel slightly caught one of the small foam barriers and off I went. From that point on it was hard to try and pull back any sort of lead I hoped to gain and the collision physics continued throughout the race making it highly frustrating to the point I was pulling my beard out (I don’t have any hair on top so can only pull my beard).
If you can move past that the game is actually very well polished, something you should expect it to be after this time. Running on my Pro, the graphics were amazing and frame rate drops were none existent, but there was just something missing that I couldn’t quite put my finger on at first. When it did hit me it seemed rather obvious. The thing that has always made Milestones bike racers great were the deep ruts created by the bikes racing over the terrain causing all hell with your steering if you ended up catching them wrong after the first lap you could kiss your ass goodbye. They are there this year, just nowhere near as deep and daunting as before, it just feels that Milestone decided to add the artistic effect, but not the physics effects. It has always been something that the MXGP series has got right but not so much with Supercross.
The campaign does feel a little (shall we say) dull. There is no real sense of achievement other than XP gains which do very little other than unlock a few new outfits you can apply to your rider. You race across various stadia and tracks on either a 250cc bike of 400 yet it doesn’t grip and pull you in. I mean, I may be being a little over critical on what should/is a good title and does offer quite a bit outside the campaign mode.
At last we can choose to play as a female rider, not that it makes a difference anywhere in the game, but great for all the equal rights activists I guess. The track editor has been improved upon last years installment allowing some fun in creating your own track, racing on it to test it out and then uploading it online when you are finally happy. Multiple racing events as well as the online multiplayer.
The game as a whole has been improved upon. The textures are visibly much better than last year as well as frame rate improvements making the game flow and feel a lot nicer, but even down to improvements on the animations when riding the bike making it feel a lot more natural to control if you do avoid the stupid crashes. Then, look closer, the stadiums are well lit and the track from multiple angles, and those shadows cast are perfect, flowing seamlessly under your bike.
The game does have a lot going for it but there is just something that I don’t like about it and can’t really put my finger on it. MXGP (for me) is a lot more fun and feels much more rewarding to the player and does make me want to keep going back to it; I just don’t get the same feeling when I played this years release. I keep referring to them, but the over exaggerated crashes kill the game off and it’s always in a corner of even worse, at the side of the track when you go off after a big jump, which then resets you on the up ramp of a jump. Hit the gas too hard on respawn and your bike goes into a wheelie due to gravity physics and throws you off the back, but then when you do start to get going again you can’t get into a flow over the jumps due to lost speed and by the time you hit a flat spot where you can build your speed up again, you are 10 seconds behind the man in front and at the back of the race and as I said before, making up any places is seriously difficult when you are that far back.
Unfortunately for me this years release hasn’t improved over last years enough to constitute a successful release. Please Milestone, I beg of you, bring in more features from MXGP and you really will have an amazing game. This years release however for me gets a 7/10. Last years got an 8 from me, but there’s just not enough improvements this time to warrant the same score I’m sorry to say.
**PLEASE NOTE** AIR Entertainment were supplied with a review copy from Koch Media. This has in no way influenced my review as per our Review Policy.