GameGuide » Blog Archive » MX vs ATV Reflex

I have to say, when it comes to racing games I prefer to stick to tarmac. My absolute preference would be the Aussie V8’s, but there are no real options for this on the current gen consoles. GRID and Forza 3 are the two best road-racing games available, and DIRT2 puts forward a pretty insane game for four wheel off road racing. But I’ve never played a game where you only have two wheels.

So when it came to reviewing the latest in the MX vs ATV game, MX vs ATV Reflex, I was in virgin territory. Not that this was a bad thing, for one I wasn’t approaching the game with any baggage, negative feelings or over the top expectations. 

What I was hoping for was a fun but challenging game, and that’s exactly what Reflex delivers.

The big changes in the game from previous versions (other than presumably better graphics) is the Rhythm Racing 2.0 physics engine, Rider Reflex control system and real-time terrain deformation. What this all means in a nutshell, is that Rainbow Studios have tried to give you more control, whilst making everything a little harder to do.

You get to steer the bike with the left thumb stick and control the rider with the right, not only allowing you to perform sharper turns, but also giving you a chance to save yourself from falling if you land badly. This works really well, and can save your bacon on many occasions!

Terrain deformation on the other hand makes everything just a little harder. As in real life, if you have dirt bikes tearing up the place, you’ll see fair bit of environmental damage terrain deformation, such as deep ruts that will throw you off balance, or just the difference between soft sand, hard dirt and water – it all affects the way your bike handles, the speed at which you travel and the likelihood that you’ll end up on your face chewing dirt.

Reflex pretty much lets you choose what you want to do, with the initial options of Arcade, Motorcareer and Multiplayer. Motocareer is the best option as this enables you to unlock more stuff that you can use in arcade – if you wish – and Multiplayer is where you’ll find opponents on XBox Live just waiting to show you how much of a noob you really are.

Motocareer offers you seven different options, all that require you to win races – or at least a place on the podium – to progress to the next race or unlock better bikes. There’s pretty much something for everyone, from free riding to racing – even stadium racing – to freestyle where you get to show off a range of tricks. It’s pretty much an extreme sports fans wet dream.

So what are the negative aspects to Reflex? Well to be honest I really haven’t found any yet. Sure it suffers from the same issues as any racing game – at some point, racing around is going to get old for all but hardcore racing fans. But there is plenty to do, with lots of variety, that Reflex will keep most players entertained for a long while. And if you really like a challenge there seems to be a healthy online racing community to prove your chops against – though getting into a game was a little hard at first as it doesn’t have the standard lobby set up – but once you’re on, its all on!

So if you’re a fan of the series or the sport, you’ll probably love Reflex. If you’re a racing fan looking for a different challenge from smooth, safe tarmac tracks, then Reflex will offer you a lot of fun, and a whole new learning curve.

Basically if you like to throw caution to the wind, and race at breakneck speeds, against other people – AI or real – and you don’t mind getting dirty, then Reflex is for you.

Reviewed on: XBox 360

Available on: XBox 360, PS3, PSP, NDS.

Reviewed by:

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