Back in the day, when I was young and invincible at 14 years of age, I started riding motorbikes. Most of my mates had motorbikes, and we used to ride them to go to school and to sporting activities, and then on the weekend we’d ride for hours just for the thrill of it; the feeling of speed and the sense of freedom you experience by riding a motorbike is truly special. But there is one thing you also need to be aware of that all riders have experienced. . . falling off; you never know when or how fast you’ll be going when it occurs! So, I was really excited to give RIDE 4 a go and enjoy the reminiscing.
RIDE 4 is a motorbike sports simulation game developed and self-published by Milestone S.r.l. on the 9th of October 2020 on the Steam platform. The game is also available on PS4 and Xbox One.
The game consists of Career and Multiplayer modes, as well as the option of choosing to race on all available tracks (Americas, Europe and Asia) and their variants (some tracks have up to 4 variants) without starting a Career mode.
My first impression of RIDE 4 was not really great. I found the game very difficult to play in the beginning, due to the fact that I had decided to jump into the Career mode straight away. And that was not the right approach, because, as I discovered, you have to acquire a licence to unlock competitions and exhibitions. To give you an idea, whatever Regional League you decide to start with (Americas, Europe or Asian), you have to accumulate a certain number of points to unlock the first competition of that region. In my case, I went with the European league. I had to reach 72 points within 6 challenges, with three different motorbikes on three alternate tracks. It wasn’t easy at all, not only because each bike handles differently, but because you can’t have your wheels off the track at any time during the Time Attack challenge, otherwise you have to restart the session. And on the Track Test challenge, you accumulate penalties if you haven’t managed to go through all the flags at a specific speed and beat the clock to receive a gold medal and the maximum number of points. Each time you complete a race or a challenge you receive credits, which you can use to upgrade the motorbikes you own.
As frustration was creeping into my experience, I decided to play individual races with the bikes that were available in my garage. It took me a while to feel comfortable with each of the bikes, but then I started winning races and accumulating credits, which I used to upgrade these bikes. Then I went back to the Career mode and funnily enough, I started to beat the challenges and unlock competitions and exhibition races. Then new bikes became available, and if I had enough credit to purchase that bike, I would go back to the individual races and start learning about how the new bike handles itself before I went back with it to the Career mode. My experience with RIDE 4 started to grow on me, and I am now enjoying the game.
There are several camera views available in RIDE 4; I personally prefer the Onboard view (the one where you can see both of the rider’s hands), rather than the Third Person view, even though the rider animations in the Third Person view are fantastic while leaning to either side. The Onboard views replicate the feel of speed and the handling of the motorbikes far better than the other views, in my opinion.
In terms of customisation, there are plenty to play with. The Rider customisation is really good, as you can choose his/her style of riding and you pretty much have the ability to change his/her entire outfit if you have enough credits to spare.
In terms of bikes, there are 180 bikes from 18 different manufacturers that you can purchase at the dealership. You can modify 12 components in each bike as you see fit.
Regarding the level of difficulty with the AI, I strongly recommend starting with the conventional Easy difficulty, which is automatically set at 40% when you start the game for the first time. Then gradually move up the AI levels of difficulty. Same thing with the Driving Aids; keep the Simplified option on, then move on to Advanced or Realistic.
Expect to be involved in plenty of crashes, but don’t despair, as you can rewind a fair bit to learn from your mistakes, or simply take a photo souvenir of your crashes and then rewind.
I haven’t tested the Multiplayer/Online aspect of the game at this stage, and therefore I can’t comment on that specifically.
I like the fact that you can set up the race in terms of weather and day/night cycles, and it is really easy to implement. I really enjoy the graphics and scenery in RIDE 4, especially with the unconventional tracks, such as the French Riviera; it’s pretty stunning, I must say.
The gamepad is definitely my first choice in regards to the controls. I did have a few goes with the keyboard, and I was pleasantly surprised with the outcome.
Despite having been frustrated at the start, the game grew on me. I guess it’s one of those games that take a while to get used to, where only perseverance will get you through the first three to five hours of gameplay. Then you’ll see the light at the end of the tunnel and ride it through at full speed, screaming, “FREEDOM!”.
Review written by THE CPT FROGGY for Zeepond.com!
Positives+ Fabulous Graphics all around (tracks, scenery, bikes)
+ 180 bikes to purchase and upgrade
+ A significant number of tracks with some including up to 4 variants
+ Easy to set up weather and day/night cycle per race
+ Career and online modes
+ Several camera vie
Negatives- The first few hours are extremely challenging, and frustration might get the better of you.
RIDE 4: You truly need to earn the right to ride! When you do, it is extremely satisfying!
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Zeepond Rating: 7/10
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