Monster Energy Supercross 6 Review – Sixth Time’s a Charm

    Title: Monster Energy Supercross - The Official Videogame 6
    Developer: Milestone S.r.l.
    Release Date: March 9, 2023
    Reviewed On: PS4
    Publisher: Milestone S.r.l.
    Genre: Racing

As a 90’s kid, I’m no stranger to video games made around a product. I remember gems like Chester Cheeto: Too Cool to Fool, Cool Spot, and Captain Novolin, to name a few. Unfortunately, in recent years, you’ve seen less of this happening. The most infamous I can recall is Sneak King, the Burger King game. However, I do remember Monster, the most popular energy drink at the time, also making a game, Monster Energy Supercross: The Official Video Game, back in 2018.

I remember loads of jokes and memes about it, but I never saw it again outside of banner ads on random websites. Last week I found out they have made 6 of these games. This is crazy, considering I commonly see the original game on sale for a single dollar, but I digress. What could they have to offer with a 6th game to their empire of motocross games?

After learning about this 6th entry, I looked up review scores for the other 5. The first three were strikingly positive, but the scores bled into the middle range, starting with 4. This makes sense because the market for Motocross Racing games is pretty shallow, with MXGP being the only other yearly series. The developer of the MXGP games, Milestone, is now developing Monster Supercross 6, so they probably stand alone in the market. Milestone also makes the Hot Wheels games fun fact.

First, you have to name and create your racer. The name defaults to Mile Stone, which made me stupidly laugh, so I kept it. Next, you can pick through some default faces, hairstyles, etc. The graphical quality during selection is everywhere. The hair looks like a lego brick, but some facial features are top-notch. Head size also ranges from normal to hilariously alien. I decided to go as crazy as possible but didn’t want to spend too much time with it. So blue hair and orange beard it is.

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The game does offer loads of tutorials for newer players, teaching you how to drive your bike and do neat tricks. Unless you’re me, these tricks increase your score during races, so you usually land on your head a lot. A higher score gives you more currency after the race, which you can spend on cosmetics and bike upgrades. Doing a certain number of tricks or maneuvers during a race will complete a challenge list, which gives you skill points because, surprise, this is also an RPG. These skills are essential to better control your bike, like giving you better turning or stronger brakes.

The campaign follows you through different leagues, with the rival AI getting smarter and faster with each rank you go up. I’m unfamiliar with Motocross, so the race rules are beyond me. You start with a time limit, and after the time limit expires, you must complete three more laps to finish the race. Your game experience after each race, gaining levels and unlocking new cosmetics as you go. When you advance to Rookie, you get to sign a contract. What does this actually do? I’m not even sure. I picked one that sounded funny.

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The physics of your bike seems questionable. You control your rider with the left stick and the bike with the right stick. You typically want to lean both yourself and the bike into turns, lean both back over humps and swing wildly to do tricks while in the air. Sometimes your bike gets enthusiastic and will swing much further than you planned, landing you in places you don’t want to be. Your rider occasionally decides to go home and bail out on the bike whenever they want. The accelerator also gets stuck. If you hold down to go faster and then release, you will continue to increase your speed even after you release it. Monster Energy Supercross 6 Review image3

Hitting the break sometimes stops this, but other times not, so I often flew off the track. I certainly have no idea if this is normal for Motocross, but the bike going faster without input from me was pretty funny. There is also collision with other racers. While there appears to be a tracker for injuries on your character, the racer I landed on seemed perfectly fine to continue the race even though I very clearly killed him. The physics don’t seem accurate even a little bit, but that makes it more fun.

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You can design your own cosmetics, though I’m not entirely sure how to do that, and I don’t really care, but I did have the option of using currency to buy something designed by another player. You can also create your own tracks. I’m bad, however, so my track was a complete mess, and I’m not clear on if there are more complex things you can add to your creations. But, in better, more competent hands, I’m sure it’s a great system. You can upload them online and race with anyone you want, as well as your standard online racing experience. The prebuilt tracks are pretty much what you’d expect from motocross tracks. Some are inside and outside, but all are lined with borders and banners advertising Monster Energy.

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Even going into the experience, fully intending to meme my way through the game, I actually had a stupid amount of fun. Whether or not the physics work as intended, it scratches a racing itch I didn’t know I had. With a market as lifeless as the motocross video game market, Milestone has a pretty solid idea of what they are doing. I didn’t try the online racing, so Monster Energy Supercross 6 is a fun time unless there are server issues. But then, you just have to look past goofy character designs.

A review copy of the title was provided by the publisher for review purposes

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