According to Wikipedia, the Isle of Man is known for two things: the Manx cat (which has no tail!) and TT motorcycle racing. I don’t expect to see a video game starring a Manx cat releasing any time soon, but those who prefer the thrills of the racing are in luck, with TT Isle of Man: Ride on the Edge 3 bringing the frantic speed and excitement of the yearly racing spectacle to PC and consoles.
Check out some screenshots down below:
I’ve had no experience with the TT Isle of Man: Ride on the Edge series before, so this third entry is my first foray into the wild and dangerous racing across the island. Maybe that’s why I found it so tough to get used to the ins-and-outs of the game? TT Isle of Man: Ride on the Edge 3 has a harsh learning curve, with each bike demanding precision when hitting the bends of each road in the island. Hit a corner at the wrong speed? You’ll crash. Don’t hit the brake soon enough? You’ll crash. Don’t pull off a sharp enough turn around a corner? Yep, you’ll crash. I spent so much time crashing out during my first hour playing that I wondered if I was ever going to win a race, and whilst a lot of that is down to my own lacking skills, it’s also worth noting that the game can be TOUGH.
Maybe that’s what made that first taste of victory so sweet? Yes, there’s a learning curve to be found in the game, but when things click into place and you start to figure out how to handle your bike, it feels so enthralling to play. I’m used to playing more forgiving racers that don’t necessarily strive for realism, but TT Isle of Man: Ride on the Edge 3’s demand for perfection has started to convert me to the other side. And hey, if you do want an easier ride, you can always bump the difficulty down to give you a helping hand – it is worth noting that the game isn’t for the faint of heart, though.
TT Isle of Man: Ride on the Edge 3 brings with it plenty of events to complete spanning across two varieties of bike: Supersport and Superbike. You’ll definitely feel that the Superbikes have a bit more oomph to them, so you may prefer to start off with the Supersport, but that heightened sense of speed and power actually works to the game’s favour. It’s all about thrills (and plenty of spills) after all, so speeding across the island on a Superbike is certainly rewarding… you just might have an easier time starting off with the Supersport to begin with. Either way, the bikes feel really good to race with and really bring a slick sense of speed to the experience, so TT Isle of Man: Ride on the Edge 3 does nail the most important aspect of the game.
“Yes, there’s a learning curve to be found in the game, but when things click into place and you start to figure out how to handle your bike, it feels so enthralling to play.”
You’ll find yourself racing across a bunch of different events in-game, including time trials, head-to-heads, and so forth, with players then earning the points required to upgrade their bike to tackle trickier events. It’s a familiar but satisfying loop, so if you’ve played a racing game before, you’ll know what to expect. There’s online multiplayer available too, and whilst I haven’t had the chance to try it out just yet, the demand for absolute precision in a race should ensure showdowns with opponents are really exciting. I’m looking forward to getting stuck in, even IF the jostling for positions might see me suffering plenty of crashes along the way.
What helps make TT Isle of Man: Ride on the Edge 3 that bit more interesting is its open-world design, which allows you to speed across the roads of the Isle of Man to move between events or simply uncover some history behind the island through the various Discovery Points that highlight specific landmarks. If I’m being honest, the open-world lacked the thrills seen in the likes of Forza Horizon or Need for Speed and the style of events you race in didn’t feel like they benefitted from an open-world approach (especially since you race across specified circuits), but it was still pretty cool to speed across the island and take in the sights. Whilst I’m not so familiar with the racing on the Isle of Man, the open-world exploration made it easy to appreciate its heritage and how important it is for the island.
Check out some screenshots down below:
That being said, I wouldn’t say that TT Isle of Man: Ride on the Edge 3 is the prettiest racer that I’ve played. Whilst the bike models look good and the racing has a realistic presentation, the island itself lacked the graphical presentation to make its landmarks feel especially impressive to admire. I mean, it is a racing game, so the fact that you’re typically speeding past them does mean they probably don’t need TOO much attention to detail. When you take your time in the open-world, though? You’ll start to notice it doesn’t have the graphical finesse of similar titles in the racing genre. At least the crashes I had looked great though, whilst the overall performance was slick with no noticeable straying from the game’s 60fps frame rate.
I think the biggest surprise about TT Isle of Man: Ride on the Edge 3 was how much I ended up enjoying playing it. I’ve never really fancied playing the series before and my early hours with the game were so unsuccessful that I thought it just wasn’t going to be for me, but when I figured out the racing and started winning, I had a really good time. Sure, it hasn’t become one of my favourite racers that I’ve played, but it’s been cool to try something different that genuinely feels exciting to play.
TT Isle of Man: Ride on the Edge 3 Review
TT Isle of Man: Ride on the Edge 3 can be tough as nails to play, but once you get used to it, the racing can be really thrilling. The core gameplay loop of racing, winning, and upgrading your bike is cool, whilst the open-world exploration lets you take a deep dive into the world of TT racing on the Isle of Man – even IF it doesn’t necessarily feel like it benefits the gameplay all that much.
The game has just been a pleasant surprise and one that I enjoyed a lot more than I expected. There’s no doubting that its core audience will be motorbike lovers and I’d find it hard to recommend to casual racing fans, but those who do give it a try are in for a fun time (when they learn how to stop crashing at every bend in a road).
Developer: RaceWard Studio
Platform(s): PlayStation 5 (Reviewed), PlayStation 4, Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch, PC