Most road users hate cyclists. Just the sight of a lycra-clad individual or group makes their blood boil. However, there are exceptions to this rule, and that’s when they are competing. The Tour de France is a world-famous race that convinces people that cycling is cool. Consequently, these new fans can try to become elite athletes in Tour de France 2022.
Developed by Cyanide and published by Nacon, this is a sports simulation title. If this isn’t your thing, you’d be excused for thinking it’s the Bore de France. But don’t be put off just yet! I was surprised by the level of depth, the competitive edge, and how much fun I had. Therefore, bear with me as I dissect the finer points.
Tour de France 2022 surprised me.
Being a keen cyclist, the thought of playing Tour de France 2022 wasn’t that shocking. Yet, I can understand why others would be put off. It must be difficult to see how it could be fun or challenging. What’s more, would you really want to keep playing a potentially repetitive game?
Though many of the races follow a similar pattern, they are always unique and this makes it fascinating. With different teams vying for their agendas, you never know where you stand. Furthermore, each rider in your team has strengths and weaknesses that suit different events. Consequently, it is a tactical and logistical nightmare to get everything right.
Minor errors undermine every plan you make. Therefore, you must rely on your team and the NPCs to get you through every course. If they consider you not to be pulling your weight, you’ll get dropped. Subsequently, you must weigh up your options and never rest on your laurels. As I said, it is a tactical nightmare that can unravel at any moment.
Stamina, team orders, and the wind.
When you are racing 100s of kilometres every day, it is understandably exhausting. However, you must push yourself if you wish to win, master the sprint, be King of the Hill, or stay with the peloton. In order to do this, you must maintain your energy, use your gels wisely, and rely on team orders to get through.
Each race asks you to ride in a group to conserve your energy levels. You have 2 to monitor, red and blue. The red is for sprinting, and the blue is for long-distance. These can be maintained if you coast behind other riders and shelter from the wind. If you don’t do this, you will battle with the elements and “blow up” too early. Therefore, this is where team orders are essential. Your group of riders must work together to protect the leader. This is a fine art and one that takes a lot of practice to get right.
You may choose to surround your leader to keep them sheltered. Alternatively, you can attack to stretch the group and break up the flow of the race. Whatever you decide to do, it will impact your team. Therefore, planning, patience, and using your strengths are a must if you wish to win.
Plenty of modes.
The best sports games have plenty to do. Luckily, Tour de France 2022 is packed with options. With custom tours, online leaderboards, and team and individual careers to experience, it’ll keep you busy. The career options are tough, rewarding, and take over your life. Moreover, if you get hooked on this, you won’t be able to put it down.
The team career mode asks you to balance the books while hiring the best riders. You have the choice of who makes the cut and how you specialise your group. However, the aim is to make a rounded bunch that can challenge on all fronts. Subsequently, you must find the best leader, sprinter, mountain climber, and all-rounder to win every tour.
Ride solo in Tour de France 2022.
If you are all about individual glory, then select the Pro Leader option. Here, you can choose your discipline and the events to enter. You are still part of a team, but your success is based on individual performance. By riding well, and completing your goals, you can become a leader and a champion of each “grand race”.
The casual option is not so casual after all.
If an in-depth and demanding career is not your thing, then dive straight into Race mode. Here, you can create a tour, undertake any race you wish, and ride for glory. However, this casual mode isn’t so casual. Instead, each race takes hours to complete and you must abide by the same mechanics. Consequently, it is drawn out, demanding, and oh so rewarding.
This is also true of the Race of the Moment. These limited-time events ask you to compete against global players. With a variety of challenges to attempt, it isn’t as full-on as other modes. Instead, it’s a little more relaxed, but just as competitive, nonetheless.
Tour de France 2022 is great to play, but it looks dated.
Graphics aren’t everything, but a modern finish is nice to have. Sadly, Tour de France 2022 looks like it was picked from 2018 to 2019. Its poor textures and clunky animations are disappointing. However, it doesn’t ruin the game, it just makes it less realistic.
Unfortunately, the audio is also a letdown. With repeated soundbites, uninspiring sound effects, and dull commentary, it’s underwhelming. Fortunately, there were some fleeting moments that worked, but these were limited. It would have been nice to have more variety in crowd noises and a choice of background music. As it is, the lack of energy makes longer stints a little dull.
The controls are great.
With an array of tactics to use, drinks to swallow, wind to avoid, and more, this could have been horrendous to play. Thankfully, the responsive controls and excellent UI prevent this from happening. The easy-to-follow tutorial explains the fundamentals and, therefore, you’ll understand the basics immediately.
Every event is a full-on experience that takes hours to complete. Yes, you can simulate or skip through races, but that defeats the purpose of the game. If you play this as intended, you’ll enjoy a deep title with plenty of longevity and replay value.
Tour de France 2022: as gruelling as the real thing.
Those crazy athletes that undertake the Tour de France are special. They put their mind and body through some horrific ordeals. However, you can feel their pain from the comfort of your sofa. It shouldn’t have been so enjoyable, but I was hooked immediately. It is tactically brilliant, challenging, and gruelling. For these reasons, I recommend you to buy it here! Grab your lycra, bike, and team, and race to become the next big thing.