LifeisXbox’s Monster Energy Supercross 4 review | Italian videogame developer Milestone S.r.l is back with their brand new installment in the Monster Energy Supercross series. Officially, the new title is called Monster Energy Supercross: The Official Videogame 4, but we’re just gonna go with Monster Energy Supercross 4 for the rest of this review. This franchise started in 2018 and gets an update annually. I actually remember playing a supercross game when I was a kid, but unfortunately, I can’t recall its title. Anyway, trying out the newest addition by Milestone S.r.l. seemed like the perfect way to feel a bit nostalgic while enjoying a fun game. I mean, I thought I was pretty decent at supercross. Boy, was I wrong.
We played Monster Energy Supercross 4 for 6 hours on PC. This game is also available on Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S and Playstation 4 & 5.
What we liked!
- Graphics | I quite enjoyed the graphics in Monster Energy Supercross 4. They are not 100% realistic, of course, but they definitely suffice. The terrains look very good, and the riders look decent. To get maximum enjoyment out of the great graphics, a photo mode is available. A welcome addition to the game, in my opinion, since this is a perfect game to take a few cool shots mid-air and on the courses.
- Game modes | The main focus is on the career mode, which is why I’ll be discussing this in the bullet point below. As usual, Monster Energy Supercross 4 also offers an online multiplayer mode. The compound mode (free-roaming area) is also returning for this edition, but it’s set in a different landscape than the previous game. This time we get to enjoy 5 tracks inspired by Maine islands where we can ride around alone or with up to three friends and even uncover collectibles. There’s also a day and night cycle feature in the compound, but they might as well have left this out. Riding around during the night will just make it hard for you to spot obstacles and see what the hell you’re doing. The ever so famous track editor got an upgrade and now includes new modules and customization options.
- Career mode | The career mode is supposed to be the highlight of Monster Energy Supercross 4, and it does a great job at fulfilling that promise. For this new title in the franchise, the career mode was totally revised. You start as a Futures rider and climb your way to the top until you become an absolute champion. The performance of your rider is affected by your skills, which you can upgrade in a new skill tree. Of course, skill points are needed. These can be obtained by finishing races, but also by participating in extra events, completing training, and obtaining objectives. The journal helps you keep up to date with what objectives you have to finish. The skill tree itself is pretty linear and looks pretty basic, but it gets the job done.
- Official elements | The Monster Energy Supercross games have the absolute advantage that they use official elements like teams and circuits. More than 100 real riders are available in this edition, making it the largest number of riders from the 450SX and 250SX East and West ever in the franchise! You’ll also find all 11 stadiums and 17 tracks of the 2020 season, including 7 Salt Lake City variants. There are over 20 official teams, and the game even features the voice of Ralph Sheheen, the lead commentator of Feld Entertainment’s AMA Supercross Championship.
- Sound | When playing Monster Energy Supercross 4, I did enjoy the sound element quite a lot. The bikes make excellent sounds, making the experience feel even more real. Add to this the totally enthusiastic commentator to hype you up, and the game delivers what it should deliver. The soundtrack fits the gameplay perfectly as well, introducing hard rock music during races. It’s a nice addition for the background, without attracting too much unneeded and unwelcome attention.
- Difficult | The actual gameplay is pretty damn difficult. It took me a while to get into the feeling, and still, I ended up falling and failing a lot. It’s not easy finding the right balance between rider and bike, getting to know the racecourses, and timing your jumps correctly. You see, you have to move your rider, as well as your bike by using different buttons on your controller, so this wasn’t easy to navigate. I started out playing against ‘very easy AI’ and still came in last quite a lot. Also, I noticed that once you fall off your bike, you’re pretty much screwed. Getting back in the race with the others will be very difficult, and nearly impossible if you fall twice.
What we disliked
- Not very welcoming to newbies | I’m not very familiar with the supercross sports, or the Monster Energy Supercross games. Unfortunately, I wasn’t given much guidance. I think including more information about the sports could actually be very interesting and helpful. I had an event where I had to complete ‘4 whips’ and I had no idea what to do. For an absolute newbie to the genre, I would’ve loved some extra advice or help.
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