An SBK 22 pre-release showcase took a look at the upcoming game’s new features, and while some elements look remarkably similar, there are a few differences.
We’re now just a week away from the release of the first official WorldSBK video game in a decade, and ahead of launch, developer Milestone has revealed more gameplay footage.
For the first time the menus and user interfaces have been unveiled and we have to say that they look awfully familiar to MotoGP 22. But that also makes a lot of sense since this game is from the same studio and uses the same Unreal Engine technology. The fact that the two games look similar shouldn’t come as a surprise.
The same seems to apply to the main “Manager” career mode, with the team personnel system looking nearly identical to the MotoGP titles, as well as mention of winter testing, development programs, data analysts and engineers.
However, if you haven’t played a Grand Prix game in a while and find that Superbikes are more of a cup of tea, this mode at least offers significant depth and the ability to oversee your own team if you so choose. However, there are no subsidy categories in the SBK 22.
A key differentiator between the two games – aside from the fact that the machines are production-based and not out-and-out prototypes – is the calendar. Although there are crossover venues, Most, Magny Cours and San Juan Villicum are not part of the latest MotoGP game. However, Donington Park is part of the 2009 NINE documentary mode.
Alongside the official teams, riders and bikes of the 2022 season, the real-world Tissot Superpole format is also represented.
However, the key element will be how the bikes handle and provide player feedback.
“We spoke directly to real Superbike riders,” said Luca Pellizzer, gameplay designer for SBK 22 at Milestone, during the video presentation.
“We focused our work on the tires because Pirelli developed a compound to do something specific, like the SCX for the Superpole races or the SCQ for the Superpole session.
“We worked a lot to reproduce the same feelings and tire consumption.”
Another new element is not only choosing the right tire compound or brake disc size, but also the right amount of fuel to last the race distance.
“We actually started teaching our artificial intelligence how to drive like real drivers, which is how the Toprak behaves [Razgatlıoğlu] you’re trying to replicate Toprak’s behavior on the track,” said Andrea Basilio of the game’s AI system, Head of Games Design and Associate Creative Director.
Most Autodrom, SBK 22
There are wet races but it’s not clear if these are changeable – something MotoGP titles lack. Online multiplayer is addressed, but again, cross-platform play like Milestone’s MotoGP 22 and Hot Wheels Unleashed is yet to be confirmed.
SBK 22 will be released on September 15 for PC, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox One and Xbox Series X|S. So far there has been no word on a physical console release.