Review – MotoGP 21

I’ve come to the (very obvious and not at all revolutionary) conclusion that Milestone’s motorcycle racing games are basically the FIFAs of their niche. Whether you’re talking about MotoGP or Monster Energy Supercross, you’re getting one per year, they will mostly feature the same kind of content, with just one or two new additions, a handful of quality of life adjustments, and updated rosters to differentiate one another. Even with the fact that I’m now playing it on a PlayStation 5, this seems to be the case with MotoGP 21.

MotoGP 21 Physics

How the hell am I not falling down?

If you’ve played MotoGP 20 or any of its predecessors, you know what to expect. As previously mentioned, this is to motorcycles what Formula 1 is to four-wheeled cars. Not only do you get the main category of racing, with the bigger and bulkier bikes, but you can also ride smaller, less powerful, but easier-to-handle bikes, which is a godsend for newcomers. As before, MotoGP 21 isn’t a very newcomer-friendly game, with a very complex difficulty curve and physics system. Although it’s much more forgivable than the Ride games, allowing you to tweak its physics with a bigger degree of freedom.

What I was looking forward to the most was seeing the improvements the PS5’s hardware would provide to the overall experience. Monster Energy Supercross 4 was decent, but far from what I’d expect from a next-gen game, especially when comparing it to something like DIRT 5. MotoGP 21 is basically the same thing. It’s a welcome improvement over the PS4 versions, but I’ve certainly played more impressive racing games on last-gen hardware.

MotoGP 21 PS5

MotoGP 21 looks fine on the PS5, but not exactly what I would expect from a proper next-gen racing game.

The tracks look gorgeous and the bikes are as detailed as one could ask for. The game also runs at a rock-solid 60fps, no matter how many bikes are onscreen, no matter the weather conditions. That alone is already an obvious improvement over my experience with MotoGP 20, but 60fps is basically what to expect from next-gen anyway. The rest of the game’s assets on the other hand, namely props and human characters, look really bad, even for PS4 standards.

Gameplay-wise, the PS5’s SSD nature allows for some faster loading times, and the game utilizes some of the DualSense’s features, such as its adaptive triggers. In simple terms, it’s pretty much the same treatment witnessed in Monster Energy Supercross 4, just with much larger tracks and overall environments. A few extra features, such as the option to run back to your motorcycle in real time after a crash, are also available. But considering the fact that there’s a rewind function that lets you fix your mistakes almost instantly, only veterans will find this new option interesting.

I might not be on the actual track… but I’m still better than the dude on the back.

MotoGP 21 is a pretty good racing simulator, but once again: it is catered towards a very specific niche, it’s not terribly newcomer-friendly (despite being a LOT more tolerable than the Ride series), and it’s not very different from last year’s iteration. However, it does feature a few quality of life improvements, as well as an improved performance courtesy of the PlayStation 5’s hardware. If you’re a fan of the sport, then you’ve probably preordered and couldn’t care less about its critiques. If you’re a racing enthusiast, then this version is only truly recommended if you haven’t got any other MotoGP game released over the past few years, or if you want another pseudo next gen game for your PS5.


Graphics: 7.5

The tracks and bikes look great and the game runs at a blistering framerate. Other assets, such as props and riders, look bad even for PS4 standards.

Gameplay: 7.5

Just as before, there is a very tough difficulty curve at first, but it’s a lot more tolerable and user-friendly than the controls on the Ride series. It also uses the DualSense’s features a little bit.

Sound: 7.0

MotoGP 21‘s sound design is exactly the same as any other Milestone game released in recent memory: realistic (and very, very loud) sound engines coupled with varied menu music. These tunes aren’t as catchy as the ones in MotoGP 20, though.

Fun Factor: 7.0

MotoGP 21 is pretty much the same as MotoGP 20 with a few quality of life improvements here and there and the fact it’s already available on next-gen platforms, even if it barely takes advantage of their increased horsepower.

Final Verdict: 7.5

MotoGP 21 is available now on PS4, PS5, Xbox One, Xbox Series S/X, PC, and Switch.

Reviewed on PS5

A copy of MotoGP 21 was provided by the publisher.