There was a golden age for arcade games that some survivors still have, as is the case with MX vs ATV, with its license continues to present new sequels. This new title is more focused on simulation, such as the official product of the MXGP motocross world championship, MX vs ATV has always offered that casual style to arcade lovers.
The arrival of MX vs ATV Supercross Encore refers to the remastering of that game that arrived on Xbox 360 in 2014. Simply offering the same content, even more, where graphic improvements are the most evident, and substantial improvements have been included in other areas, such as gameplay. Motocross bikes and quads at full speed on circuits throughout North America, competing in different disciplines to prove the worth of the riders.
MX vs ATV Supercross Encore is a remastering that aims to bring the player to something more than a visually renewed experience.
Arcades style gameplay
One of the most relevant aspects of this type of proposal is the inherent lack of games, which now seem to be in short supply. MX vs ATV Supercross Encore offers that light proposal, without questions or complex approaches, where the important thing is to participate. The arcade character has been largely lost within many genres, where the extreme sport has included more complex products, where trajectory modes introduce us to a simple mission, to be the best pilot, but for what it is necessary to show concentration and a deeper strategic approach.
MX vs ATV Supercross Encore ignores all those approaches, offering a good dose of action and fun with a simple approach, drive and enjoy. This is how we can find the different rules that the game offers in individual races, such as Supercross races, the main protagonists, but also a free mode or the waypoints mode, which take place off the circuit, or the Rhythm Racing mode, that takes place in an irregular straight full of jumps. But this refers to the quick mode, which is combined with multiplayer modes, both online and local for two players.
Of course, this is not all, there is also a Career Mode, which may not correspond to its name. Well, far from being a career mode, it could have been considered as a championship mode, where there are different lists of circuits forming different championships based on one rule or another. There we have the 125, 250 or 450 motorcycles, as well as the quads, which will either compete with each other or as part of a show that mixes both types of vehicles.
The approach is very simple in Career Mode, choose, compete, win and unlock parts, accessories, equipment and new rules to continue enjoying. A very arcade-like approach, oblivious to those complex proposals that try to put us in the shoes of a driver and prove our worth. It is a game to play because you feel like it and simply have fun doing so.
Motorcycle games have always been somewhat more complex than cars or trucks racing games. And it is that far from directing the vehicle with a single stick, both have been used to choose the direction of the vehicle and the position of the driver. In motocross, we have seen that this gives the ride a more complex touch than when the action takes place on asphalt. But in MX vs ATV Supercross Encore, the arcade approach simply plays a trick, when this control system, coupled with non-existent physics, becomes a tough experience.
MX vs ATV Supercross Encore offers different elements, explained in a very brief and not very explicit tutorial section, as an interactive tutorial which is always better. Controls and the use of the clutch are beneficial when the physics has something to define. The combination of all these elements supposes real chaos in the control, because the excessive response or sensitivity, along with the irregular trails, can bring many annoyances that will limit the experience. You can even notice that the AI in ‘rookie’ loses control continuously, going off track and doing things that seemed like it could only happen to the player.
And there we have a complicated control system, in which you have to combine the movement of both sticks to give the curve in conditions, with the consequent loss of speed, for which using the clutch, we will shoot out wherever the front wheel points. You can execute jumps, using the right stick up and down to gain momentum and get thrown at a higher speed. Of course, given the sensitivity, as well as the irregularity of the terrain and the position of the bike, we can fly beyond the limits of the circuit, and lose the race if you’re playing it on a higher difficulty.
And that is precisely where one of the problems of MX vs ATV Supercross Encore lies, that the level of difficulty increases without measure when we can barely control the bike, given the sensitivity problems derived from the controls. Combining sticks, clutch and coping with the continuous jumps will seem, in many cases, chaos, although the reaction of the motorcycle may not be as intuitive as required. Impossible jumps, which have their grace given the arcade character of the game, but which can detract from the proposal in other aspects, since certain reactions to the control are not understood.
You can always train, but it may be easier to spend your time on something else or have fun competing at more affordable levels and performing various pirouettes, for which there is a combination of Street Fighter movements, using three different cameras. But it is not a game in which they have focused on enjoying this aspect of pirouettes and pranks, except in that free mode where we will play without worrying about anything. The rest of the game modes offer an experience focused on those fictitious tracks, as well as on the game mode in which we must go through those open maps going from one point to another, in search of the checkpoints.
In fact, we can state that one of these cameras seems more typical of repetitions, which in this game there is not, since it uses a third-person perspective, but shifted to one side. A little useful camera, at least for something other than the exit, using that trap that avoids getting ahead of the rest. On the other hand, the camera from the helmet can offer a more realistic sensation, but it is not a game that makes the appearance of this type of experience, being in most cases, even more, chaotic when not having knowledge of absolutely nothing that happens around, since the right stick is used for the control of the pilot that we do not see. Thus, the best we can do is use the external camera of a lifetime, with which you can realize that the remastering of MX vs ATV Supercross Encore, it doesn’t look quite as refreshed as it assumes.
MX vs ATV Supercross Encore is a title from the past generation, a remastering of a game that nobody remembered. However, they have decided to fill arcade fans is a good idea, but something more is required. And is that having a competition to beat, although the concept could be more attractive, it must also be visually. MX vs ATV Supercross didn’t stand out at the time, the remaster doesn’t really reveal any substantial changes.
The motorcycle and the rider, who present a good number of accessories and colours to dress up, but that basically only serves to change the appearance of something that is obsolete. However, we cannot stop missing a deeper, more detailed and complex design, where the bikes are detailed just enough and the rider remembers the original design. Maybe even the pilot animations can be highlighted, with a few repeating animations, a few tricks in the air, accentuate the poor design that realizes that it is not a product worked from the ground up.
It is too noticeable that it is a remastering, but in the elements where it could have been worked, such as textures, particle effects and lighting, the work is crude and simple. The lighting is fictitious, not very credible and less detailed, working on textures that do not offer any realism or depth. We might think that it is the objective of this game, to offer a vain experience, but the result is more of a patch on something that saw the light many years ago. In fact, the proof that this game has not been well developed is the terrain that the motorcycles pass through, static despite being mud or dirt, with a totally obsolete texture.
Without remarkable visual effects, the overall look is a sneaky game, tweaked to run at a higher resolution and little else. The work is done to renew this game is poor, to the point that the characteristics that describe it are not understood, even for the sound section, with a soundtrack typical of this type of game that is drowned out by quite clonic and strident sounds. It’s a close-up remastering, however, what matters is what it offers, action, fun, and options.
One of the aspects that draws the attention of the game is to be able to observe that playing it in the Freeplay mode, focused on the only alternative to enjoy this arcade proposal, we find many circuits and possibilities. Get down to work and tackle each race to unlock new bikes, circuits, championships, accessories for the bike and for the rider. It can be sensed that there is an important catalogue to discover, which are being unlocked to give a progressive experience from less to greater complexity.
There is more than twice the number of tracks, with many customization options for the bikes, many ways to face the 60 professional riders in races who can be recognized by their clothing. We can expose our rider with endless equipment from more than 80 professional brands, everything looks good, it seems diverse, and in a way it is.
However, there is a very unpleasant surprise when we are invited to enter the MotorClub Depot. Initially, we could think that it is more accessories for our pilot, using that questionable micro-payment system. But far from being the case, MX vs ATV Supercross Encore is exposed as half of a game for which you have to pay almost the entire original price to have access to motorcycles from the main manufacturers, such as Honda, KTM, Kawasaki … as well as more circuits. That is, we have two motorcycles per category, it is not much, but as they are very customizable, we do not complain, but they sell us about 21 additional motorcycles. The pack of all these accessories costs $59.99, that is, more than what was paid for the original game. It goes without saying that this procedure doesn’t seem too fancy, although they could have put it all together for the price of those add-ons.
MX vs ATV Supercross Encore is a product that can delight those who do not want to expose themselves to complications in motorsports games. More specifically, for those users who are looking for those experiences that had their peak in the Playstation 2 era, extreme sports in arcade format to have fun playing without further worry.
But we can also refer to the fact that the products must be renewed over time, although they maintain their original concept, the change of generation implies a renewal in the technical section, at least. Given that games of this type are not abundant these days, it may be an aspect that companies should consider exploiting and that MX vs ATV Supercross Encore seems to try to take advantage of. But neither can this concept be allowed to be covered in any way.
It is good to propose a simple and flat game, which allows us to exploit that crazy and carefree mechanics, those who seek to experience championships and professional careers in its virtual world. Offering plenty of tracks, including the ability to customize driver and vehicle for off-road riding on open maps But you also have to demand, you also have to comply with the quality of a product along with the achievement of generations and hardware. An interesting approach to evoke those fun arcade afternoons, but an ineffective attempt to deliver a product that satisfies those who demand the genre with today’s standards in terms of graphics and gameplay.
We prepared this review with a digital review code for the PS4 and Switch versions of the game provided by Terminals PR