Platform for Display:PLAYSTATION 3|Verified Purchase
5.0 out of 5 stars
This game is excellent if you understand the subtleties of cycle racing. If you don't, then I'd concur with the other reviews that it's not for you. However, if you're a cycling afficionado, this game has everything you could ever wish for. It faithfully replicates all the intricacies of tour racing, presenting you as the team captain with a plethora of decisions on every stage.
Each stage of the tour is broken up into several sections, within which you can choose which member of your team you want to race as - you can even switch team-members mid-section if (for instance) an intermediate sprint is followed by a key climb. Like any touring stage, only the first and last sections are truly exciting, as you decide how to handle the opening breakaways or set yourself up for the final push to the line. However, what really makes this game in my opinion is the detailed strategy it requires you to employ during the middle sections of the race, just like a real tour manager. Do you set up a relay train to try and reel in that dangerous breakaway? Do you disrupt other teams' relays to let your own breakaway escape? Which domestique do you use to protect your key cyclists and when? When do you attack? When do you insert a super-domestique into an attack to use as a springboard for later? How are your team-members holding up, and how can you manage their energy consumption? Do you go for intermediate sprints or mountain points, or do you hang back and conserve your energy? Can you set up a sprint train at the end of the race - and if you can't, can you manoeuvre your sprinter into a position to win without the aid of a sprint train? These are just some of the never-ending decisions you have to make as the peloton snakes through the countryside (and yes, the graphics of the countryside and spectators are dull and very repetitive, but that's not what this game's about).
If none of the above means anything, then this game is not for you. If, however, you are fascinated by the delicate nuances of cycle racing, this will help you to understand the intricacies of the sport even more.
As other reviewers have noted, Cofidis were clearly unable to gain permission to use the names of all of the teams and their members - 'Radiocash' and 'COM' are the most obvious. However, they have cleverly given players the ability to edit the names of every team and rider, so it is a simple matter to go into the editor and change 'Radiocash' to 'Radioshack' and give the Schleck brothers their proper names (for instance). This also means that you can give a rider your own name and have the vicarious pleasure of seeing yourself riding in the tour. So far, I've taken possession of Peter Sagan and shepherded him to Best Young Rider and the Green Jersey, and I'm currently in the process of trying to win the tour as Andy Schleck.
One final bonus for me is that you can map the controls of the PS3 version to a Big Ben Cyberbike, so that in order to maintain the energy level of your chosen rider, you have to pedal on the exercise bike. This makes exercise biking fun and adds to the whole feel of the game.
So, a great game if you're into the strategies of cycle touring. It will bore you rigid if you're not.Read more ›
I'm in no way a cyclist or cyclist race fan but after watching the TDF on my local tv and noting the British interest with the sky team I thought I would buy and try.I was a bit nervous about the latter after the negative game review of the 2011 edition, but gambled anyway.I can't compare it to the 2011 game(never played that edition) and I can't offer an expert race cyclist review on the realism of 2012 but here goes.
First of all my advice is to go through the tutorial to learn the basics, it's just a shame the tutorial is not interactive and more informative so you can actually practice the techniques.You have only photos with descriptions of what to do and what the game play symbols are.In the game itself you have the Tour De France(TDF)season mode in which you go through all the stages and a TDF single stage mode in which you can play any stage and use it as practice.I just practiced on the first long stage over and over plus the first time trial(ever slightly different technique to stage race)so that I didn't spoil the TDF season mode(up to you?)I think it would be nice in the future to either or both include a TDF career mode or include more season support races like tour of spain so to work your way up.Also maybe create your own rider and team?as you can only play with an excisting team.The latter determines your difficulty so as an example I picked the Sky team (British interest)which is intermediate level.
As far as the graphics go they are ok.Only gripes are sometimes the brigtness of light is too high and spoils the picture.Plus the cyclists only look to be pedaling when they are going for it on the flat or uphill.I never noticed the traditional road markings too and the fans seem a bit sparce and too spaced out as well as been a bit cardboardy.
The sound is ok with rider talk and crowd chants but sometimes a bit repetetive with "come on come on" over and over again.
Gameplay, well as I said I am not an expert on strategy.You can pedal either in small ring mode(usually most of race)and when you wanna gun it press the circle button to go up to big ring mode.Whatever you do you have to watch your energy which comes in three colured bars.The first two bars yellow and red are the main race ones while the green one is for each of your stages.When you peddle you have a effort bar which goes up when pressing x repeatedly and drops when you let go.Your cyclist pedals normaly if you leave the x button alone and if you tap the x it moves up the effort bar so you can get it to the top and peddle faster.If you hold the x button on you can keep that effort pace(say half way up the scale) for a section so you can avoid expelling too much energy and then tap x again to go up in effort or let it fall to save energy and not get too far in front of your team.When you effort pedal you have to watch the yellow bar.It will drop if you give it too much and then rise if you slow down,tuck in with a pack of riders(wind avoidance)or eat some energy food.There is also a red bar which is your attack bar.This depletes if you attack too much especially in big gear mode.My advice save the red until later.The other bar is the green bar which depletes through all the stages.So when you enter a new stage it may be near the top or half way down so be careful not to empty it because you can't get it back.
When you start a stage you pick any of the top riders in your team.Your team consists of more back up riders and you can swap them in and out but the game starts with the top riders for your team.After you have picked your rider(lets say mark cavendish)you pick what food you want to carry(different energy affects)then go to the stage and start racing.During the stage you have to plan wether to gun it up front or wait until later.You can press R1 button to communicate with your manager or your team mates to send them on attacks,protect you,get you up front,bunch up together(relay)or disrupt the peleton in front.Part way through the stage the game will stop and simulate certain parts of the race but will keep you informed of how your team is doing then start again on the next part of the stage inwhich you can pick another rider in your team to control.I think if I remember it simulates about twice during each stage.
All in all I have enjoyed my first play of the game and because it is the only modern console TDF game a purchase would be advisable for cycling fans and sports gaming fans.As I said am not a cycling nut but I like sports games especially when based on nostalgic and traditional events.I am happy there is a TDF game which if I remember rightly came out years ago on a ps2 version and is currently present with pro cycling manager on the pc(for which I have somewhere-install soon I thinks!)
Just a word of warning some of the team names and team riders(not all) have been made up(Radioshack is Radiocash)but there is an editor to change the names to the real ones.You will just have to do your homework in changing these unless someone as already done a list of the changes. Thats it hope this helps and enjoy!!!!Read more ›
Platform for Display:PLAYSTATION 3|Verified Purchase
As with all games in this genre, it is slow, boring & the scenery & people (including their voices) repeat endlessly every few seconds for hours on end. One for only the most ardent TdF fan (I thought I was - but this game is a bridge too far).