A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this game.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Ride 2 is a motorcycle racing game that includes both solo and multiplayer modes. There are accidents and crashes in the game, but nothing is graphic. Online chat is unmoderated, so kids can be exposed to inappropriate content. There's also a large amount of licensed motorcycles from Honda, Suzuki, and other bike manufacturers, as well as paid downloadable content (DLC) available.
What's it about?
RIDE 2 is a motorcycle-racing game that lets players race licensed bikes on licensed tracks. This sequel was designed to best the original game by offering many more bikes (more than 230, not including optional downloadable content), more bike categories (ranging from the legendary 2-Stroke to the all-new Café Racer), many customization options (with more than 1,200 available real-world parts and more than 800 accessories), and multiple solo and multiplayer game modes. These include Supermoto/Supermotard Race, Crew vs. Crew, Point-to-Point Races, Daily Challenges, and more. The game also dishes up more than 30 real-world tracks, including many legendary ones, such as Nürburgring Nordschleife (in Nürburg, Germany), the Northwest 200, and the "World's Fastest Road Race" at Ulster GP (both in Northern Ireland). Other features include an authentic physics engine, realistic graphics, and an online MotoClub, where you can create or join any number of clubs, show off your bike collection, and race.
Is it any good?
There's some fun to be had here, but the number of issues takes the air out of this racer's tires. The sheer number of customizable bikes, licensed parts, and accessories should initially please fans of this genre, but the game's problems begin surfacing shortly thereafter. Naturally, not all the content is available at first, but the huge amount of variety is one of Ride 2's greatest assets. There also are many licensed tracks (mostly European) and modes to choose from, such as Country, City, GP, and more. The best experience with this game is during multiplayer, whether it's a regular open race against up to 12 players or an Online Championship, which lets you participate in a sequence of online races (whomever has the most points at the end of the season is the winner).
But as ambitious as this game is, it falls short in execution in a few key areas. For one, it can be finicky to control, even when "dumbing down" the simulation to make it play more like an arcade game; it's not unusual to wipe out on a corner, even though you'd swear you properly handled the slight turn. The first-person helmet view of the action is a nice addition but becomes disorienting when you get into a turn. Visually speaking, as in the original Ride, the game seems a couple of years behind the likes of other racing games. There are frequent and sometimes long load times. Another beef: The in-game currency system, which is used to unlock new content, takes an awful lot of winning in events and challenges to earn enough money to buy and upgrade bikes. Hopefully there will be a patch to make earning cash more attainable instead of this long and frustrating process. If measured by variety in bikes, parts, tracks, and modes, this game would be a clear winner. But its shortcomings make it more like a weekend rental for those curious enough to take it for a spin.
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Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.