Pro Cycling Manager 2021 – Review
Follow Genre: Managing, Simulation
Developer: Cyanide
Publisher: Nacon, Bigben Interactive
Platform: PC
Tested on: PC

Pro Cycling Manager 2021 – Review

Site Score
Good: Lots to manage with graphics as clear as possible
Bad: Poor racing simulations with little effort
User Score
(1 votes)
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VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 5.0/10 (1 vote cast)

Like a ton of sports games, every year there is a new edition. This is the case for FIFA, NBA, but also the more niche games such as Pro Cycling Manager get their new version. So here’s a look at the new edition of managing a bunch of sweaty people with amazing athletic abilities.


Like in the previous Pro Cycling Manager games, you get to pick a team and perform as best as you can, hopefully coming out on top. The game is one of those “make your dreams come true” games where you write your own story within the limits of the game. The only tangible story to be found in the game is via some emails during the campaign mode, where it feels like you have some type of interaction with the outside world. Sadly, these are all one-way messages, not allowing you, the manager, to actually interact.


While the game can be very overwhelming, especially for newcomers to the series, things are actually quite clear and even professionally handled, when it comes to the information that needs to be conveyed. The screen seems a bit littered with options, yet it feels the developers organized them as well as they could, considering all that is going on. During races, the game doesn’t look ugly but the animations do hamper the fluidness of the game, as well as tone down the quality a few notches. While each model is standing on its own to some extent, it all quickly feels like a copied and pasted blob.


The music in the game does feel a bit cheap and not always matching for what is going on. It has a royalty-free ring to it with some jazzy, bossa nova elements in it, and it’s disputable if this would be the right fit compared to music present in other sports games such as FIFA. The commentary during a race is just laughable, and the sounds of i.e. cyclists pedaling really add little to the overall realism of it all.


Now, make no mistakes, this is a game where you don’t do the biking yourself as you would in i.e. a traditional racing game. Instead, you manage basically everything, including the races themselves. This means that outside a race, you are busy making sure you keep sponsors happy, get the right equipment for your team, keep an eye on the calendar and give everybody the right training. During a race, you tell the cyclist(s) at what point they should make an effort to get ahead or when to preserve their energy during those athletic long runs. The game does have a lot of finer mechanics, making sure a proper amount of tactics are involved, but it also feels very accessible for most players. This makes it slightly interesting for oblivious players, as well as cycling experts, though you probably really need to be a fan of cycling to like a game like this.

This is basically all the same as the previous Pro Cycling Manager titles, but with slight improvements. Improvements such as giving different personal goals to your riders do add a bit of quality to the mix. What’s not improved are the races themselves. The biggest flaws of Pro Cycling Manager are how boring and uninspired the races actually are. Looking at the peloton cycling feels a bit like watching a miniature train going on a single, solid track. It takes away the ‘sportsy’, exciting elements from real-life sports. Despite that the managing elements keep getting closer to the real thing, perhaps tracking the matches is where the game could gain the most ground with every new release. Making them more interesting with an added sense of realism, more vivid gameplay, interactions, and managing choices, would already spice things up a lot.


In the previous games of Pro Cycling Manager, the managing part is hovering somewhere between mediocre to good. It feels like the 2021 edition has got this nailed down pretty well. The simulation of races and the lack of fun components during said races, aside from the managing, are almost horrendous. The graphics and sound feel very cheap and there’s a lot to improve in this department as well.

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 5.0/10 (1 vote cast)
VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)
Pro Cycling Manager 2021 - Review, 5.0 out of 10 based on 1 rating

I'm a game designer, developer, and reviewer. I've been reviewing for since 2017.

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