If last year I skipped the annual MotoGP edition to give Juan the opportunity, this year I wanted to get back on the bike and compete. I had already done the hardest part because unlike my experience in MotoGP 19 I already had the basics of riding and just needed to adapt to the new features that Milestone brought to this MotoGP 21. fooled me

It’s been a while since I came across such a challenging driving game; within the most commercial games of the genre. While maintaining the playable premises of the previous installments, the title has taken a step forward in terms of simulation, both for better and for worse. Forever, because we’ll feel the bike at all times, its condition, that of the track, the weather… everything contributes (or diminishes) to the behavior of the mount and it’s spectacular. We won’t do two of the same laps and that means concentration and a much higher demand on our skill than in the previous installments. On the other hand, this high demand will drive away those who want to take control and spend 5 minutes with Quartararo in Montmel√≥.

It’s true that the game has a series of tutorials that, in addition to reminding us of the basic functions, also explain some of the new mechanisms; such as tire management, fuel or the topic of long laps. Still, I’m either getting older, or it’s not enough to put on the grill. It’s also true that the game has a bunch of customizable utilities, like classic auto braking, auto gears, the pursuit line, and that kind of common stuff in the genre, but the game should give you more of a hand when it comes to that To teach them things that are of the utmost importance, e.g. B. How to take a curve. I know it seems silly and obvious, but believe me there is a chasm between terrible, bad, average and good; and I could take intermediate steps for all eternity.

In the end you have to decide for the tried and tested: Practice. And the thing is, practice makes perfect and there’s nothing like using the pre-race sessions to conquer the track, spy on the other riders as they take the various corners, follow them and see what’s going on are we doing wrong or in which section are we losing two tenths per corner and why. This is the great wonder of MotoGP 21, bringing out your streak of self-improvement, competitiveness and frustration that later turns into satisfaction.

I used to joke with Juan that this edition seemed like the souls of the bikes to me, and joke aside, I ended up taking the game as such. Each circuit a biome, each curve an enemy. Testing and testing and testing until we found the spot, fused with our bike and nailed this track. And there’s a world where you start and end a practice session. Your way of opening up before the corners, leaning, playing with the edge of the track to scratch something… all this is magical and when you reach it the feeling is indescribable.

Therefore, because of this new approach to the game, I have no shame in abusing the rewind system. In my case, in this franchise as well as others, I’ve always had it in mind for those moments when you blatantly fail, go off at the last corner, or accidentally (willingly) collide with a rival, to assert yourself and the thing doesn’t end as you expected In MotoGP 21 my chip changed and now rewinding is my best learning tool. Fast and unlimited rewinding is our best way to memorize, fix and improve. He’s your best friend, more so than your engineer, and will lead you down the path of good times.

I’m talking about setting good times, falling behind, but obviously we will also have rivals. Competitors we want to beat. Everything we’ve learned is put to the test on race day and everything changes all over again. Our lines, our inclines, our braking points; Our good work can be undone if we face a competitor who brakes in front of us, or another who rushes it more. If our tires start bleating forget about accelerating at the curb because you will fall and falls are now more penalized than ever, if before we appeared spooky on the track we will now if we fall we have to tell our driver get to the bike, wait for it to mount and get back on the tarmac. A novelty that fits the realism that Milestone is implementing installment after installment, and of course it fits like a glove.

The competition won’t make it easy for us either. The artificial intelligence (ANNA) returns, which has been improved and makes the behavior of the pilots much more realistic and appropriate to the racing situation. The battle for points will get complicated and rivals will throw themselves in the air like daggers for a point, a podium or I tell you no win. An AI that feels good, does consistent things, avoiding the typically unreliable, immobile single row in each race. Now the pilots are falling, they’re making mistakes, they’re going to avoid a crash, but they’re not going to fold once they’ve taken the line. A very good experience, which in turn requires concentration and good work.

Another interesting recent addition, in keeping with championship loyalty, is the inclusion of the long lap penalty. Now on almost all courses we will have a curve with a longer variant in the form of a track, which the direction of the race will force us to take, for example if we shorten the curves too much. A problem that doesn’t happen in qualifying because they just cancel the lap, but in the race it can be a chore as we have to ‘deviate’ to serve out the penalty whilst saying goodbye to the podium we were last fighting for have few rounds.

In short, becoming a MotoGP champion is an arduous task. As I said in MotoGP 19, it’s best to go into career mode, start at the bottom and work your way up. A mode that has greatly improved and added more layers of customization. We can even create our own team and decorate the disguise to our liking with endless stickers. In addition, we must control our collaborators, both a representative and a team of engineers who will help us find better contracts and improve the bike, obtaining research points that will offer us improvements in future Grands Prix. Very complete and at most, it can be requested to add a narration to our pilot, as for example the Codemasters F1 does, although it must be said that it is not stunning either.

In the end, our goal is to move up the category, but of course the move towards more powerful bikes means a bit of a reset, since all our references change, the bikes behave differently and it’s time to use the training sessions again to get the new one tame bike. Each circuit a biome, each curve an enemy.

The game is complemented by the time trial mode, fast racing and winning a championship. Something similar to the challenges we’ve seen in previous installments is missing, too bad because it was fun unlocking the classic riders and their bikes. That doesn’t mean they don’t appear. We can easily use them all unlocked in fast modes and enjoy, for example, Doohan, Stoner, Crivill√© or any of the different Rossi variants.

The multiplayer, for its part, meets dry. It lacks a local co-op which wouldn’t be bad for that, but then again it has dedicated servers for a better experience. Outside of the competition itself, the funniest thing is being able to act as a race director and control everything that happens on the track.

Milestone The new generation got off to a very good start. Not so much on a technical level that although there are improvements and the bikes and tracks remain at the good level already seen, there isn’t a stunning jump; Although, to tell the truth, those who can get their chests can be counted on one hand. On the other hand, the modeling of drivers and team personnel still needs a lot of improvement. The use of vibration is more enjoyable with the DualSense, less complex with the Xbox controller. It tries to transmit the sensations of the motorcycle based on vibrations from the controller and it helps a lot in immersion, which is greatly improved if we decide to play with one of the cameras in the first person perspective. It’s the overall experience that, for a change, will force us to change the way we run and take references.

MotoGP 21 is a game for players who love challenges. Those who like to battle everything to scrape a few tenths, which in the end only gets us to a seventh place on the grid, but we taste like a pole. A title that can take many hours and makes us realize that we only practice and that it reaches its maximum height when we are able to win races and championships.