Games: MotoGP 24 packed with full-throttle thrills for biking fans but adds little to long-running franchise

Neil dons his leathers to review the latest instalment of the long-running motorbike racing series

MotoGP 24
Officially licensed from MotoGP, the game is packed with authentic teams, bikes and tracks

MotoGP 24 (Multi, Milestone)

WHILE F1 may have the glamour, its pampered drivers don’t come close to the fearless, leather-clad throttle-jockeys of MotoGP.

As the North West 200 proves, bikes are so exciting, fans will even flock to Coleraine for an eyeful. With no team radio or pit stops and less electronic crutches than Formula One, bikes may have half the wheels but offer twice the action. Who needs millionaires roaring past Monaco’s yachts when you can have a Honda near-missing a burger van outside Portrush?

Marking the 12th entry since Italian developer Milestone took the handlebars, MotoGP 24 lets players put pedal to metal as the world’s fastest organ donors indulge in some white-knuckle chicanery, with more bike and player customization than you can shake your dusty leathers at.

Once again it’s all about early braking and hugging each corner as riders shave their patellas for valuable grid inches over Career, Grand Prix, Championship or Time Trial modes – including local split-screen for old-school multiplayer and 12-strong online races.

In Career, you’ll start off in Moto3 and climb the ranks by nailing those braking markers - a hair too much and you’ll shoot off your bike, too little and it’s a gravel nap.

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MotoGP 24
MotoGP 24

If it all sounds rather dry and technical, adaptive difficulty lets novices play with the big boys, and if you still struggle to beat its AI riders, a neural aids system automatically balances your crotch rocket.

With the official MotoGP licence, all of the sport’s teams, bikes and circuits are present and correct, with the added bonus of five defunct tracks to skidmark, including the historic asphalt of Donington Park and Laguna Seca.

Yet, while Milestone’s driving model has been finely tuned over 11 years, MotoGP 24 suffers a similar fate to all annual sports franchises, with little separating it from previous efforts.

MotoGP 24
MotoGP 24

The biggest addition for 2024 is the chance to switch loyalties as the year progresses, with rivalries and rumours in its fictional social network leading to top riders jumping ship and vastly different teams by season’s end.

There’s also refined handling while aggressive stewards dish out penalties like sweeties for naughty manoeuvres. This makes overtakes even thinner on the ground, though more satisfying when you pull them off.

While motorcycle racing has been a gaming staple since Sega made us Hang On in the 80s, it’s the MotoGP series that’s been giving fans a reason to saddle up ever since. It is for the fans, though, so if you think Yamaha only make keyboards or Valentino Rossi was in Status Quo, this may not be your cup of Castrol.

MotoGP 24
MotoGP 24