Sports Gamers Online
RiMS Racing

RiMS Racing Preview: Sportbikes with style and substance

The much anticipated Steam Next Fest kicks off this week, and sports gamers with a taste for high octane speeds might find what they’re looking for in RiMS Racing.  This state-of-the-art sportbike racing simulator will be available for PC via Steam, all next-generation, and current generation consoles when it launches in full on August 19. 

According to the game’s studio, Raceward Studio, RiMS Racing is “a game where you develop your love for your bike” – and having spent some time with a work-in-progress build of the game for PC, I’d have to say they’ve delivered exactly that. Gamers and gearheads alike are sure to find RiMS Racing to be a state-of-the-art motorcycle racing video game. With an expansive career mode, immersive gameplay, and a spectacular audio/visual experience, RiMS Racing is an inviting experience for novices and well-traveled virtual motorists.

RiMS Racing Doesn’t Pander to Riders

But, even if you’ve never actually ridden one of these sportbikes before, this is quite the experience. If all you want to do is zoom around iconic tracks at high speeds, compete with your friends on a split-screen — you can do that.

 If you’re a gamer whose affection for racers comes from drifting in the Burnout series, this is certainly a change of pace. The virtual sportbike experience in RiMS Racing reminds me of what Gran Turismo does with cars. I spent far too much time trying to nail a few hairpins turns on the Million Dollar Highway, one of the game’s many iconic tracks.   RiMS Racing is undoubtedly a challenging game to master, but so would any actual sportbike simulation; this isn’t an arcade game. 

Building a better bike is core to the RiMS Racing experience. If you’ve got the resource, you can quickly go right into the game’s shop and get what you need. NACON, RiMS Racing’s publisher, has confirmed that the game will feature over 500+ spare parts and 200+ rider customization options. These spare parts and pieces of rider gears won’t last you forever, though. NACON similarly confirmed they would not be selling loot boxes and chance packs either. Instead, every spare part and customizable rider option will be available in the game’s shop, available for purchase with real coin and in-game coins earned through the career play. Suffice to say, riders who’re simply intent on souping up their bike and zooming past their competition will have every opportunity to do just that.  

One of the most user-friendly aspects of this game is the menus and the overall UI. Raceward Studio smartly designed RiMS Racing with an approach that says, “simplicity is the highest form of sophistication.” There is simply no wasted clicking. Being able to quickly toggle the overall racing difficulty, AI skills, and the game’s racing physics all in one easy spot is one example of this. Moreover, being able to switch gaming inputs with zero additional toggling effortlessly is incredible. I went back and forth between my keyboard and mouse set-up and a PS4 controller, trying to find what I found personally most manageable. Plenty of significant studios ignore aspects like this when building their UI, so it’s nice not spending an iota of focus on some of these often unheralded aspects of what makes a game successful in the first place. 

The educational value in RiMS Racing is also readily apparent with the Motorbike Status Check. The tool is accessible at any given point during any race. It’s also as intuitive as it is appropriately named. If it’s the tire pressure, the fuel management, or whatever part of riding it is you need to know, the one-button accessible dashboard here is invaluable. If you’re zooming around these tracks, you’ll need to know if your tires are on the right. The more you understand what makes your sportbike go, the more you will get out of the game, and that’s why the Motorbike Status Check is so clutch.

Progress is Progress

One of the most outstanding aspects of RiMS Racing is the special care they’ve taken to make their game slightly more inclusive than so many other sports games. In the career mode, within lodging and rider customization, the user isn’t forced to choose a binary label like man and woman. Instead, it’s just one of two body types that only suggest different ends of the gender spectrum. The gender/body type labeling might not necessarily be the headline-grabbing piece, but it is essential to note. The game could still do better with even more options concerning complexion and even more body types, but progress is still progress. Representation is critical for the gaming world, and while the overall industry hasn’t always been as quick as these sports bikes are, these sorts of details are evidence of growth.

As the game grows post-launch, these options are sure to diversify in representation– especially if there’s a vocal community asking for it.  This is a richly designed game with an end-to-end experience.

In all, this game feels like the start of something special. These bikes, these tracks, and this lifestyle are not just the stuff of legends; with RiMS Racing, you can ride.

Are you going to test RiMS Racing out during the Steam Next Fest? Let us know in the comments below and keep it locked to Sports Gamers Online as we continue to follow the news regarding RiMS Racing in the coming months.

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