MX Nitro is a motocross racing game (in case you were wondering) developed and published by Miniclip (teaming up with Saber Interactive) in their first attempt to develop a game for PC and Consoles. While not terribly original, MX Nitro manages to capture a certain nostalgia from my youth, while also keeping me invested with its decent amount of content and pretty art design.
Nitro starts you off with a basic tutorial (you can check out the video below of how [not so] bad-ass I was during the tutorial) and runs you through the basics of what you’ll be doing throughout the games 40 courses. The game offers mainly a side view during your races, so you won’t need to steer very much, which I appreciated. The non-steering allows the player to focus on what’s important in Nitro, performing tricks to gain nitrous, and using that nitrous to smoke your competitors.
In general, the competition you face seems relatively consistent. Occasionally, the AI will crash and burn trying out a trick, but in general, the courses are built with a “you versus the track” mentality. I’m completely fine with that. I think much of my enjoyment of the game came from failing a bunch, then learning when and where to use nitrous or do tricks, eventually crossing the finish line first and feeling the thrill of victory.
Along with that oh-so-sweet thrill, you’ll earn cash and upgrades from your victories. Cash can be used to purchase new duds for your racer, different helmet styles, decals for your bike, and eventually different bikes themselves. As you progress, Nitro allows you to not only upgrade your current bike but also purchase more advanced bike’s down the road. While I enjoyed the range they give you, I found it hard to attach to a specific bike due to the fact that as the game progresses, you’ll have no choice but to buy the best of the best to beat certain courses.
Luckily, Nitro does a great job of managing to keep its tracks from being boring, while also sticking to a certain number of races that are available. The races shift between your standard beat the pack, highest trick score, stunt challenges, and even a very cool “boss” race which I loved that they threw in there. Beat the pack races are what you’d expect, you line up against some other races and try to be the first across the finish line. Stunt challenges are interesting as the game asks you to perform a specific task such as using a jump to soar through the air and land on a particular bridge. Highest trick score allows you to combo different buttons together to perform the highest score and defeat your fellow tricksters. There are a decent amount of tricks you can attempt to pull off for this, and as you progress through the game, you’ll gradually unlock more and more available button combo’s to string together. At any time, you’re able to check out these new trick combos in the game’s menu as well, which is a welcome feature. Last but not least, we have the boss races. While these are just a standard one on one race, the novelty of having a boss battle in a motocross game made me smile, and I enjoyed having to take them down one by one. The bosses also tend to talk trash each time you line up, which Is fantastic motivation.
During each of the races I mentioned, you’re able to earn some extra cash by performing certain tasks throughout the race. These are all optional, and if you choose not to try them it won’t hurt you at all, but I enjoyed trying to hit the goals Nitro laid out for me.
As I mentioned earlier, the games art design helped sell me on it as well. Nitro takes you all over the globe with its courses, ranging from snowy woodlands to hazy deserts, to indoor arenas packed with enough fire rings to make Johnny Cash proud. The game is just pretty. Nitro’s music isn’t exactly my cup of tea, but it fits perfectly for a motocross title, and it never took me out of the game. If anything, it would have been weird to hear anything else while I was crashing into the side of a bridge.
MX Nitro is a commendable piece of work from Miniclip. Top to bottom Nitro is well put together, and I enjoyed all of the time I spent with it. My only concern with the game is there is a slight lack of depth for a twenty-dollar price point, but I still feel like this game is worth a download if you want to catch up on your motocross!
*Note: A copy of the game was provided for the purposes of the review
Final Score: 8/10
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