As motor sports go, there are few more thrilling than motorcycling. Formula One is fast, but the cars look like speedy elephants when compared to the crazily unstable-looking shape of a 350 or 500 cc motorbike.
Take one lightweight deathtrap, add a madman in a leather suit--you--and take off around five real-world tracks, modeled right down to the last blade of grass. Super!
However, from the instant the starting flag drops, it becomes obvious that this is no standard racer. In the early stages, it's a swine to control, your rider weaving all over the track like a drunk with a major stability problem.
Get over these initial difficulties, however, and what you have is a wonderful game that falls somewhere between an arcade game and simulation without ever straying too far into either camp.
Multiple modes are, as usual, offered for your gaming pleasure, including the chance to run the tracks in arcade mode or go for a full season of racing--impressive when you've only got five tracks. The bikes are fully configurable with settings for a myriad of different components and attributes that should keep the serious bike fan happy for hours.
Graphically, it's a total treat--in-game images are good and sharp and there's no slowdown as you hammer around the circuits. It's in the replays that Moto GP really shines. Outside of the Gran Turismo playback feature, there is nothing more beautiful than this game--at times it's easy to forget you're watching a computer-generated image and not the TV.