Trials Rising was announced during Ubisoft’s E3 2018 Press Conference at E3 2018 and I had the opportunity to give it a test-run via the floor demos. Developed by RedLynx and published by Ubisoft, Trials Rising brings back the familiar gritty feeling that past Trails games had. The rainbows and unicorns from Trials Fusion are all but gone, and the urban style biker theme takes a heavy grasp in Rising.
The demo had the four difficulties that are standard in a Trials game: Easy, Medium, Hard and Extreme. Each level in the demo had these difficulties for a variety of skill levels which complimented the brand new story mode styled aspect. The levels were laid out on a map and chosen based on player preference, unlike the previous Trials titles in which players progressed from easy to hard. Starting on a hard track, I soon found that the series I loved still felt great. It took me just minutes to realize my sloppy skill at the game, as I restarted the level over and over trying to achieve the fastest lap. My competitiveness on perfecting my record had me playing the game for about 30 minutes, which is way longer than I should have been.
After playing the hard track multiple times and failing to meet my own expectations, I decided to try a different stage and the different bikes that were on offer. As memory proceeds me (Editor’s Note: Let’s assume he ran out of ink on his notes), I used the standard setup in order to unlock the bikes in previous games. Beginning with the all-round balanced bike that isn’t great at anything but is okay with everything. After the starter bike is, players can either choose to use the heavy engine super fast bike that’s easy to manoeuvre, or it’s opposite, the incredibly hard bike to manoeuvre that isn’t quite as fast but is still pretty good. Each bike played as expected and all worked well depending on how the player used them. I did notice however that the theme of certain bikes being better than others on certain tracks was still in place, which was a little disappointing but didn’t take away from the fun.
One of my favourite aspects of the Trials series, especially Trials Fusion, was the ability to customize, and the level of detail they offered. While still a “Work in Progress”, Trials Rising did not disappoint on the customization, offering a bunch of options for players to dress their bikers and bikes however they feel. With a ton of paint and colour options, along with some crazy helmets and accessories, Trials Rising appears to offer players the chance to be the rider they want to be. The satisfaction I felt when achieving my gold medal and unlocking a the helmet tied to that challenge is what so many other titles miss, so I’m glad that Trials Rising is able to reward players for their hard work and make the hours spent in-game feel worthy of achievement. Some of the options I saw available in the demo for customization were helmets, jacket, gloves, footwear, victory poses and profile poses. Victory poses are a nice touch and offer the addition of a little more personality to the bikers.
Overall I enjoyed my time at the Ubisoft booth at E3 and was delighted by Trials Rising. As a fan of the franchise and a fan of the new game, I can say this will certainly be a game I pick up at release.
Trials Rising is due to release February 2019 for Xbox One, PlayStation 4, Nintendo Switch, and PC (via Steam).