Trials Rising is the latest logic defying, physics denying, 2.5D obstacle course motorbike racer from Red Lynx Studios and Ubisoft. Trials games have been around for a while, and there’s even a pretty polished mobile version called Trials Frontier that plays just about the same as the console versions of the game. So how does Trials Rising hold up and what new stuff does it bring to the table? Let’s find out
The moment you start the game you’re greeted with a track that will give you a feel for the game and whether this is for you or not. On the surface, Trials Rising comes across as a game one might play on mobile (heck, like we mentioned, it IS even on mobile), of course, in this case it has way better graphics. There are only four keys that you have to worry about, which are by default the arrow keys, and it all seems fairly easy, especially at the start. However, don’t let that fool you. The amount of finesse required as you progress through the game is insane. You need to press the right button not only at the right time, but also with the right amount of pressure, too much and it’s over, too little, and, you guessed it, it’s over. For this reason, it’s incredibly inconvenient to play this game on a keyboard. Unlike controller triggers, keyboards don’t have that kind of pressure sensitivity. Plus, we’re sure an analog stick will help you way more with the directional leaning, as not only is it simply easier with an analog stick, there is again a sense of levels of application, which a keyboard cannot offer unless it too has analog output such as the Wooting One.
Just like The Crew 2, Trials Rising features a world map that’s peppered with races that you can compete in on your goal to become the best ragdoll bikerman or whatever. The game also offers a tutorial to ease you into the game and show you how to handle the bike. The first few tracks are incredibly easy. As you progress and level up by completing tracks, you also unlock more levels on the tutorial which will introduce you to the more complex intricacies of Trials with more and more advanced tricks, like bunny hopping for example. These advanced tricks that you learn in the tutorial will actually be put to the test as you progress through Trials Rising, as you’re met with more and more complex levels that will leave you frustrated and spamming that ‘r’ key to reset the whole course. Of course, you can hit the ‘backspace’ key to respawn at the closest checkpoint but that shaves a whole 5 seconds off your time. 5 seconds! It definitely doesn’t help that the courses keep getting longer and it hurts oh so much to have to reset after crashing inches from the finish line.
Races on the map are graded according to difficulty, and as you progress, you will come across regional Stadium Events, which are a series of races. It begins with 8 racers, with the top 4 qualifying, then those 4 race and the top 2 qualify, you get the drill. These are the first races you’ll come across where you’re racing beside other riders, otherwise you’re the only one on the track accompanied by the ghosts of other racers. These ghosts can come in handy, if you’re stuck in a particular spot, you could observe the ghost of someone who has successfully completed that part and just copy them, or reset and thank them as you beat their time.
Of course, the thing most Trials fans will be excited about is Tandem Bike mode, where you’ve got two players on a bike, with one player controlling the weight on the front of the bike, and the other controlling the back. Both players can control the acceleration. If you hadn’t guessed it yet, it’s pure chaos, and incredibly fun. Either of the riders can actually just “eject” from the bike at any time, leaving the other rider incredibly confused, and possibly frustrated. While the mode definitely makes things incredibly difficult, the elation that comes with actually pulling it off is on another level.
The ability to create your own custom tracks is present in Trials Rising as well, where you can go ahead and create your own absurd track and upload it for others to try out. In typical Ubisoft fashion, your rider and bike are very customisable too, with loot boxes aplenty, hundreds of stickers, poses and clothing options, but that was all pretty meh to us. For those who are into it though, go crazy. We’re not really surprised about the loot or ‘gear boxes’ though. Wouldn’t be a Ubisoft game without em. Just kidding. Or are we? 😛
Graphics and Audio
Trials Rising looks great for a 2.5D game, with some very exciting environments and tracks. Unlike Trials Fusion which came out in 2014 and featured a more sci-fi setting, Trails Rising takes you across the world with races taking place at various well known locations around the globe, be it racing up the Eiffel Tower, or racing in front of the Pyramids of Giza. It all looks great.
The soundtrack is great and gets you pumped, the riders going woohoo at high jumps, the sounds when you crash and crunch of your riders bones as you ragdoll, it’s all decent.
Trials Rising – The Verdict
Publisher – Ubisoft
Developers – Ubisoft, RedLynx
Platforms – Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Microsoft Windows
Price – Rs. 1249
You’d think Trials games wouldn’t have more to offer, but Trials Rising proves you wrong. It will also be the first Trials game making its way onto the Nintendo Switch. Our only qualm was the keyboard. Play this game on a Dual Shock or Xbox controller for the best experience. Customisation was meh, nothing about it really stood out much to us, but gameplay was fun and kept us coming back despite the frustration. The minigames are also great fun. Overall, Trials is back, and in a good way.
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Manish "Trigger-Happy" Rajesh
If he's not gaming, he's... no wait he's always gaming.