MX vs ATV Legends – Review
Follow Genre: Racing
Developer: Rainbow Studios
Publisher: THQ Nordic
Platform: PC, PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S
Tested on: PC, PS5

MX vs ATV Legends – Review

Site Score
6.3
Good: Very good music, Much content
Bad: The difficulty is not fun, Bland animations
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0
(0 votes)
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MX vs ATV is a series that has been going on for quite some time now. Today we are taking a closer look at its newest installment on the current and next generation where you will race in three different categories. These categories range from the well-known MX motorcycles that are both nimble but hard to master, four-wheeled ATVs that are heavy but fun to drive, to the newest addition: UTVs. Will you finish on stage each time, or will you throw in the towel and take the bus from now on?  

Story

The story starts with our new unknown driver getting his bike fixed up and taking it for a spin. You make your way past the farm and you are told that you and your friends are always welcome. You meet up with TJ the mechanic, and now you are ready for the career mode.

This is basically all the story you’ll get. There is no real background to your character or any depth to the story itself. You just get thrown into the game and must accumulate enough fans to progress, that’s it.

Graphics

Visually the game scores some good points when looking at the general picture but it lacks effort in the finer details. For starters, you never really get that dirty. There are some off-road games where you are covered in layers of dirt after the second turn, but in MX vs ATV Legends, it seems that you keep yourself pretty clean at all times. Secondly, the dirt effects aren’t that great, they look pretty static and could have been better. Globally the game looks decent, and it will run nicely on all platforms. We tried the game on PlayStation 5 and PC, and both versions perform nicely.

Another noticeable difference in quality is the way riders are animated. Your character is always nicely modeled and animated and this is seen by the way your rider reacts to the various driving conditions. While your rider looks very nice, other characters are animated like stick figures. This is especially frustrating, as it is hard to read the other characters’ movements to also learn how to improve on your own stance.

Sound

While the game isn’t that perfect when it comes to the overall graphics, it redeems itself in the sound department. The music in MX vs ATV Legends is of top-shelf quality. The soundtrack is a mix of songs of different genres such as punk rock and techno. With a bunch of songs coming from popular artists like Bowling for Soup, The Smashing Pumpkins, and Anamanaguchi, alongside lesser-known bands such as Miyavi, What So Not, and Orbit Culture, you’ll have a varied soundtrack. The engine sounds of the MX and ATV sound really powerful and it gets the adrenaline pumping when you hear them go. Sadly, the UTV sounds like a two-stroke leafblower and not like a buggy.

Gameplay

MX vs ATV Legends is a racing game in which you can compete in three different types of divisions: MX, ATV, and UTV. The game starts with a short tutorial on how to handle your bike through the obstacle course on a large plot of land. This is the perfect opportunity to get acquainted with the controls, and while these can be a bit much at first, you’ll get the hang of them rather quickly. After completing this introduction, you meet up with your mechanic, and this initiates the start of your career. As previously mentioned, you get to participate in three divisions. First, you’ll have to prove your worth on a motorcycle, and after your first race, you will start to unlock other vehicles.

The game has a bunch of difficulty settings so you can adjust this to your skills. The game advises starting on the medium difficulty as this is suited for beginners, yet it isn’t. Normally this difficulty is meant to slowly increase over your career time as you make progress and improve your skills while your opponents grow alongside you. Yet after the first race, the opponents become so skilled, that finishing in the top three will be a challenge. Even when playing on the very easy difficulty, it will be a fight to come out on top. While the AI might not be that fast, you will lose a lot of time when you crash your bike, and this can happen a lot. Because Motorcross is all about finesse, you’ll need to perfectly balance and angle your bike for your landing, yet at times it looks like this window is rather small and this rule doesn’t apply to all the others.

The gameplay might be really hard, but once you get the hang of it, and you are able to make some progress, you can take a moment to sit back and enjoy the many features of MX vs ATV Legends. You unlock parts to upgrade your vehicles and you’re able to customize the colors of your rides in the garage. Having the career split up into three divisions ensures that you can swap between the different classes, but you’ll have to make progress in the MX division if you want to progress with the four-wheelers.

Conclusion

MX vs ATV Legends feels like a slightly missed opportunity. The game suffers from some balancing issues and feels unfinished due to the lesser details in the graphics and wonky rider animations for other riders. If the game would have received an extra layer of polish it might have been a great title to recommend to racing fans. The game has decent controls, great music, and enough content to keep you entertained for a while, but with the extremely high difficulty, you’re still struggling on Very Easy against a ruthless AI. Let us hope that a few patches can fix the issues at hand, and then MX vs ATV Legends can turn into something very enjoyable.

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MC_JP


Never give up on a dream. It might be a long nightmare, but one day it will change into a beautiful reality - MC_JP 2014

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