Motocross possibly rates as one of the most insane sports out there. The competitors travel at a pretty high velocity, taking huge jumps on gravel tracks and timing their jumps to perfection. All the while a dozen plus other people are doing exactly the same thing in very close proximity to you. It is one of the sports that have seen some of the coolest and brutal wipeouts and crashes. So obviously a game based on this very concept should be good right? Well no, it is not guaranteed.
Dull and forgettable, probably the best way to describe it
MX vs ATV All Out is the seventh entry in the series. The idea of the game is that you create your rider and go and participate in events, either with a Motocross bike, an ATV (a Quad for us Saffers) or a Dune Buggie, which they call a UTV. You unlock more events to participate in by earning trophies in lower tier events. The events range from Motocross, Freestyle and a Cross Country Checkpoint style race. And that’s about it. MX vs ATV has no sense of progression really, other than unlocking events and continuing on the stipulated playlist. You don’t start out racing slower bikes and working your way up to the more powerful, faster machines, nope, you have a top tier bike from the start. You can tune it and try and make it faster in that sense, but even that seems very limited.
On top of a very limited choice in terms of gameplay, the game also doesn’t look very good, since it might have been lifted straight out of 2009. MX vs ATV not only looks very dated, but it also has some serious performance issues, with frame rates constantly dropping to what seems like single digit figures, especially when you’re sharing the track with 16 other racers. It at some point got so bad that I felt I needed to stop because of the headache I was developing. The game is really poorly optimised, which is a completely unforgivable, especially if you consider that it looks like something that should run on a console of the previous generation.
MX vs ATV not only looks very dated, but it also has some serious performance issues, with frame rates constantly dropping to what seems like single digit figures.
Gameplay is no better either
I already mentioned that it doesn’t perform very well, but that doesn’t even come close to how poorly implemented the actual gameplay is. First off, the AI of the other racers is of the dumbest I’ve seen in a long time. They have no regard for you on the track and will ride as if you don’t exist. MX vs ATV also has a horrible respawning system, which doesn’t have a ghosting mechanism when you or an opponent respawn on the track. I found myself on several occasions being bumped off the track because of an opponent respawning right in front of me, or when I accidentally go off the track and respawns, I am subsequently pushed off track again by a rider coming from behind. It becomes very frustrating and saps any fun you might have been having out of the experience. I will add though that if you manage to get out in front, and on have yourself and the track ahead of you, it can be quite satisfying timing the jumps and just going fast around the track without all the other distractions that AI and their stupid racing tactics and lines might cause. That, however, is one of the very few redeeming qualities of this game.
The last thing to mention and get upset about is the incredibly dated soundtrack, which I suppose is fitting since everything else in the game is dated as well. The music in the game consists of old 2000s rock and metal songs, with some Dubstep thrown in for good measure. it feels so weird listening to old Disturbed or The Offspring songs while playing a game, and while it might have been welcome 10 years ago, it certainly is not today, since we’ve kind of grown out of that type of music in our games.
Going online is the best part of the game
I wasn’t expecting much of MX vs ATV’s online offering, but surprisingly enough it worked pretty well and I managed to get a few matches. It was kind of fun playing with others, but once again, it was just more of the same. The only difference is that the other racers are not a bunch of idiots, who honestly try and go as fast as possible and try to avoid you where they can. The only complaint I really have with online play is that it kept disconnecting me after a few races, which was a bit annoying. Keeping that in mind, I still thought the online part was the best part of the game, which might give it a bit of staying power over the long run.
MX vs ATV All Out is a very mediocre experience. I honestly believe it could have been better, had the developers given a bit more effort and time. It is boring, dull and performs poorly. There might be some out there that will see value in the game, but in my humble opinion, it is utterly forgettable and not worth your time.