One of the more popular racing experiences outside of normal vehicles has been found in the motorcycle category, which has had several games based on its specific style of racing. One of the great series has been in the title of MotoGP, which has been around for a while now and was really one of the first great online racing experiences on a console. Now Namco has brought MotoGP to Sony’s Playstation Portable to try and see if the genre can work as well on the handheld as they did on the consoles. So how does MotoGP for the PSP fair? Read our full review to find out!
One of the big factors in the success of MotoGP and the franchise surrounding it is the fact that technology has been heavily working in the game’s favor. The increased level of detail help the physics in the game actually work to make a more enjoyable and realistic experience. Thus we have seen in the last couple of years a genre that was once not really all that exciting now, turn into a huge genre that we are seeing a handful of games thrown into each year.
So let’s talk about MotoGP, which is the first game to grace the Playstation Portable and one that really comes from a long line of success on the Playstation 2. MotoGP has two main attractions up its sleeves, which includes the arcade mode and season mode. The season mode, which is by far the meat and potatoes of the game really does seem rather thin in comparison to what we have been seeing in the past. Basically the season mode has two options create a racer or go through a really quick career with a professional racer. Either way the game doesn’t put a whole lot of emphasis on making you want to come back to this mode after months and months, as it just seems like your given a list of races in a set order and not a whole lot else to keep you interested.
Although the season mode was an utter disappointment, the actual gameplay in MotoGP is actually quite good. Like I mentioned earlier the franchise has been blessed by being able to take advantage of some great hardware and managing to make really realistic experiences. Well, this to translates to the PSP as well which has the same unforgettable gameplay as before. MotoGP is not for the weak at heart ,as this game will literally tear you up and down the race track if you’re not ready for it. The game’s controls aren’t a problem, but the phsyics in this game are just so unforgiving I fear the average racing fan is just going to get fed up. However the serious racers who are wiling to spend time to master their rides and tracks will find much enjoyment out of this game.
The game does also have multiplayer, which is limited to just Ad Hoc; meaning that everyone your playing against also needs their own game. This is kind of unfortunate, because that means it will be near to impossible to be able to take on a full eight player race. The multiplayer which I did get to try out seemed to flow nicely and worked well enough for those who are interested in it.
MotoGP is one of those games that really just has the core gameplay down, but is missing all the extra goodies that help make games great in the long run. I think the immediate reaction to MotoGP will be positive, but following some good racing you will see that this game is really missing the key ingredients to keep you entertained for long periods of time.
Visually I kind of got the same sort of impression as I got in the gameplay department, which basically means that the initial reaction is highly positive but as you continue with the game you start to see that there are some things that this game desperately needs. First off ,the race tracks all start looking much too familiar as you get through the game. Having more detail and variety would have helped. Also the game does have some minor frame rate issues that does seem to bog up a bit during some of the intense sequences in the game.
One of the great things about MotoGP is that you could literally play this game for hours and really get no better. This is because the learning curve is so dang high that some may just really never get the hang of it. And if you’re like me and enjoy a challenge, then you’re going to enjoy this game. But unfortunately once you get through some of the personal accomplishments that this game has to offer, there isn’t a whole lot else to do. The season mode is rather short and the multiplayer doesn’t throw anything new or exciting at you.
MotoGP is not a bad game, it is a game that plays extremely well but is missing the modes to go along with it. For those hoping for the same rich deep MotoGP experience that we have experienced on the PS2 over the years, you will be disappointed with this game. Otherwise MotoGP is a game that I think is worth checking out as a rental, but anything more seems like overkill.
The owner and editor-in-chief of Darkstation.com. I've been apart of the website since 2002 and purchased the website in 2010. Owning and running Darkstation is a dream come true. I love video games and I love writing and talking about them even more.