Racing is fun, we as a species loves to compete and loathe to lose. Yet very few of us have the time or the physique to actually be pro athlete.Which is why we watch these events on the big screen, putting money and stock on the participants we want to win this darn thing. Be it Le Tour De France or a more localized race, it all boils down to our will to win. Therefore there will always be a market for a good simulator game, such as the Pro Cycling manager series. Naturally I am a bit biased since I find that watching competitive sports bores me to tears. It is one of the reasons I play games. I’m the kind of guy that likes to participate and if I cant do that, I’ll just find something else to do.
Pro cycling manager caters to the cyclist crowd and the people who want to be in charge and to experience the thrill of watching a race whenever they feel like it. Though most of the time I spent watching spread sheets and clicking on menus and reading mail. Basically I had to mange a lot of things, such as the schedule, races, training, researching gear and much more.
Once that is done I just hit continue and watch the days fly by. Until the calendar reach a day there is an even or a race. The pop-up windows during the transition is poorly implemented and blinks into existence in a way that really is annoying on the eyes.. Once I got to one of these bloody races, I could watch it unfold as an information sheet, or in real time 3d on the ground.
In this mode I can manipulate camera angles and hand out orders such as attack. A simple way of saying get ahead of the crowd. This mode has some serious issues and mildly amusing bugs. First and foremost the loading time is atrocious and my rig is fairly decent. I also had a case of the crowd spawning across the road. Not that this impacts game play at all, even if it’s most amusing. Every now and the commentator will chime in when a noticeable event occurs. After all accidents do happen and sometimes the cyclist will kiss the tarmac. Fortunately the commentator is not annoying or imposing which is a good thing. As for the sound effects and quality its quite decent indeed, especially the music. Then again there are only so many different noises a man on a bike can make. Unless he swears like a sailor due to an accident. Aside from the career mode where I had to manage a whole team until I ran the company to the ground or got tired of playing. Also feel free to add mods or custom races and events, there is a lot of extras and DLC out there. It is also compatible with steam workshop.
There is a solo career as well, where I made a mostly custom cyclist that wants to make it into the pro circuits. Aside from the focus on one specific bicycler it is still a management game, with a crap ton of data spreadsheets. The multiplayer function is fairly decent and brings the ability to be social and competitive at the same time. A perfect time sink for an enthusiast. Personally I will not recommend this to anyone other than those that likes to play games and watch pro cycling in action. However Pro Cycling manager a fairly decent made game with some issues. However I have yet to encounter anything game breaking or game crashing. So all in all its a good management simulator.
Lastly is our disclaimer. We received this game for review purposes only, and as such all opinions in this review are our own. No money has been exchanged for this review.
Njål H Sand