MotoGP 20 review


Milestone's latest MotoGP entry is a frustrating but ultimately rewarding experience if you stick with it



With the racing season on hold and rounds continuing to be postponed or cancelled, MotoGP 20 has landed at the perfect time for motorbike fans, and the new game looks to fill the void in a variety of ways.

A revamped career mode, upgraded physics engine and simulation systems as well as improved AI is what Milestone has worked on for its newest entry to the MotoGP series, and it all makes for the best the developer has come up with since taking over the series licence.

The on-track overhaul in this year’s game aims to deliver a more true-to-life challenge, with a new asymmetric tyre wear model, fuel consumption and brake management systems making for as realistic an experience as possible.

Front and rear brakes can now be operated separately and the Neural AI that Milestone says continues to learn to improve its own pace, has been sharpened up and will punish every missed braking zone and wide line through corners.

Newer players will want to play with the physics and braking assists in the menus as the game doesn’t even take a tenth of a second to think about easing you in. With the learning curve modelling itself on a brick wall, players may struggle to acclimatise at first but stick with it for a while and you’ll eventually scale the brick and mortar to click with the game.


Alex Marquez on the Honda RC213V


Of course, adjustable assist and AI difficulty means you can race for victory whatever skill level you are at. The alternative is to take off the training wheels and ask the AI to go a little tougher on you. Soon winning the on-track battles for 10th will feel like a win in itself.

Historic bikes and riders make a return, with in-game credits awarded scaling with three tiers of challenges available to the player. In total, 46 historic riders are available to unlock alongside 43 bikes, though multiple riders will appear more than once in different years of their career as part of that total.

MotoGP 20’s career mode though is where the most work has gone into this year, and once more you can start in any of the MotoGP classes, but you might want to work your way up and master the handling first before hopping on Honda’s premier class beast.

Players hire two engineers who will be responsible for improving the bike as well as a personal agent, who will negotiate contracts as well as facilitate moves to other teams.

Bike development is split into four areas with the hireable AI specialising in certain areas over others. The same goes for your agent, whether they are best at getting a higher salary for you or apt at contract negotiations.

The higher your salary, the better engineers you can hire, the faster you can upgrade your equipment. It all links together nicely and gives value to a system that was lacking in last year’s version.

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MotoGP20’s visuals are improved fractionally on 19, especially in wet weather conditions.

The creation suite returns with the addition of livery customisation, helping to make the game feel fresh as you progress through the seasons and change up the look of your rider and bike, which removes some of the visual fatigue other titles struggle with in similar career modes.

Friday practice sessions are more valuable than ever as you earn points to develop your bike through the season during them. Earn upgrade points during practice sessions by completing test programmes and take part in winter and mid-season tests to trial new packages and determine development paths of your team.

Upgrades, while not visual on the bikes themselves, do make a difference. but don’t always cut your lap time immediately. A fully upgraded Moto3 bike, though, brought race-changing improvements, as the size of braking zones decreased and lean angles grew more extreme as engineers worked on new parts.

One issue that has carried over from the previous titles, however, is the poor damage model and lack of feedback following collisions. Inconsistency with crashes after contact with AI can frustrate and no dedicated damage indicator leaves you in the dark as to just how much damage you have to your bike.


Maverick Viñales through the spray on the Yamaha YZR-M1


Playing with the anti-wheelie, traction control, engine braking and power functions mid-race make battles feel tactical. Without any explanation though, newer players will likely be overwhelmed.

A minor problem that can cause an off or two is the dropped frames every so often. It isn’t a regular occurrence by any means, though did happen on several occasions on PC. The issue was limited to a split second from the freeze frame to resumption of the action, and will likely be addressed with patches post-release.

The punishing handling and physics models make for a difficult game to master, but an ultimately rewarding one at that when things finally do begin to click for the player. Practice sessions feel useful rather than just another box to tick and unprecedented customisability options both in terms of player creativity and assists and difficulty makes MotoGP 20 a fun experience.

Fans of MotoGP will thoroughly enjoy this latest entry as Milestone’s newest game builds on last year’s solid offering and is a welcome challenge for any racing game fan.

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