02 Dec 2020 1:54 PM +00:00

Monster Truck Championship Review: A smashing good time

If you’re a fan of all things big, American and loud, then this game sounds like the one for you.

Announced back in July, Monster Truck Championship really caught our eye.

Monster Truck Sim Main Menu min1
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BIG WHEELS, BIG FUN: The Main menu screen for Monster Truck Championship

With big hopes for even bigger vehicles, we were a tad skeptical as to how the developer, Teyon, would manage such expectations.

Claiming the title of “first Monster Truck Simulation”, let’s take a look at what Monster Truck Championship is all about.

Want to play on Switch? Check out our Nintendo Switch review for Monster Truck Championship

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A Learning Experience

If, like myself, you have never played a Monster Truck game before then the tutorial on this game is perfect.

Neatly guiding players through the process of performing tricks, using the trucks ability to turn all four wheels and more were incredibly helpful when getting started.

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Monster Truck Sim Training min1
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BACK TO SCHOOL: Monster Truck Championship features an intuitive Training mode

The lessons are intuitive, with an on-screen guide as well as voiceover to help accessibility.

This voiceover and on-screen pop-ups also help talk the player through the career mode, management team, and customisation.

Let’s get racing

In true career progression style, players start with a bottom of the line truck which they upgrade as they progress.

These leagues move through national, professional and major leagues, with competition becoming stiffer as you move up the ranks.

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Monster truck Sim Race min1
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GET YOUR SEATBELT ON: These trucks mean business

Locations include, Las Vegas, Charleston, Foxborough, Minneapolis, Kansas City, Kilgore, Orlando and Salt Lake City. Each location has an impressive stadium and outdoor circuit to compete in the events!

The career mode felt somewhat repetitive, with a similar structure to each ‘league’ entered. However, this was to be expected with these vehicles, as there’s only so much competing they can do!

READ MORE: Logitech G923 Review: A joy to drive

The events themselves are fun as well. From normal races on a circuit, to drag events where you have to monitor your throttle and launch and even exhibition and destruction rounds, playing can be incredibly fun.

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Make your truck your own

The game also features a management and customisation feature, both of which add to the immersive nature of the career.

Management staff help provide in-gam bonuses such as increased reliability, performance or money from event prizing.

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MY TRUCK, MY WAY: The customisation options are somewhat small in number

Likewise, customisation allows you to upgrade your truck, and unlock new cosmetics to change your appearance.

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Both features were somewhat basic, with management staff appearing as a simple name with no picture and customisation being limited.

However, I was still able to make my truck my own, and there are a variety of bodies and paint jobs to choose from (for wheels, roll cage, body, and more).

The locations

The locations feel impressive.

Monster truck Sim drag race min1
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BIG VENUES: The Stadiums in the game feel impressive

Whilst the crowd seems to be placeholder people wearing various colours outfits, the structures themselves are highly detailed and really help add to the cinematic experience.

The tracks each feel different from each other, which helps remove any feeling of déjà vu from the game, and helps each event feel as fresh as possible.

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The Gameplay

Teyon have done a brilliant job of making the trucks feel heavy, even when playing with a controller.

The controls are also easy to use, with each analog stick controlling either the front or back wheels, and buttons to look left and right.

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TURNING HEADS: The stunt camera will give you a wide-angle view

Past the controls, the AI race intelligently… To an extent.

On a number of occasions, I found drivers making questionable racing decisions, although this didn’t hinder my enjoyment of the game.

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The Issues

For such a fun game, the issues were very small in number.

One I found was that you can’t change the AI difficulty mid-race, meaning that if you start on the hardest difficulty, you’re stuck there.

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NOT MUCH CHOICE: In-game tuning and settings changes are limited

Another small thing we noticed was the chase cam when performing tricks. Oftentimes, the camera would lag behind slightly, leaving the truck partially off-screen.

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Our Verdict

Overall, Monster Truck Championship was an incredibly fun and rewarding game, with a tonne of enjoyable content.

The AI could be a tad less aggressive, or to learn race craft the voiceover could talk through some elements of racing such big vehicles!

READ MORE: WRC 9 Review: Immersion at its finest!

Whilst we don’t quite believe the game reaches its ‘simulator’ aspirations, the game is still an incredibly fun introduction to Monster Truck racing.

We’re hopeful for more in future, and Teyon are doing a brilliant job of making this one to remember.

RealSport Rating: 3.5 stars (out of 5)

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