Friday 9 June 2006
Ah, the glamorous world of superbikes. Just imagine - earning a fortune for playing with your chopper while clad in skin-tight leather. Mmm. Still, at least we get to play top racers like this, which is probably the next best thing.
Although they share the MotoGP license, we have always favoured Climax's semi-sim approach over Namco's arcade racer. We had great expectations over this, and we're pleased to report that this transition to next-gen is smoother than a Gregorio Lavilla gear change.
A staggeringly high poly count and sumptuous dynamic lighting mean haring down a straight at 230mph on a 1200cc superbike is a genuinely electrifying experience.
We've also never seen asphalt this lovely before. You can gauge by the amount of burnt rubber on the road exactly when and how hard your rivals have been hitting the brakes. Classy.
Before you cock your leg over and stroke that throttle though, heed our warning. Know your front braking from your rear, stick to that ideal racing line like superglue and hold up on the left analogue stick to get your head down on the straights to squeeze every last droplet of aerodynamic juice out of your motor. Why? Because this game is harder than riding the Manx TT with a hangover.
Attempt to make up ground on the leaders by applying daredevil unorthodox cornering tactics and prepare for a painful encounter with the asphalt. And there are some harsh time penalties for riding on the grass.
Our tip for glory? Take a deep breath, wipe the sweat from your palms and remember to concentrate. And use your brakes. A lot.
Aside from the HD tune up, subtle handling tweaks and the odd new track, MotoGP 2006 is admittedly more an update than a next-gen revolution.
We're also taking issue with the heinous loading times - they're a real hog, and we're not talking Harley Davidsons here.