New career mode (solo) totally revamped for a better gameplay :
- A news system (with filters) has been implemented.
- Different objectives to achieve during the season in order to answer sponsors' expectations. Goals that are achieved grant special rewards. If some goals are not achieved it can lead to the manager (player) being fired.
- The budget allocated by the sponsor is re-evaluated every year based on the results from the previous year. Relegation can cut the team budget drastically and force the manager to fire some good riders.
- Finances are more important and neglecting them could lead the team to bankruptcy (=game over). Possibility to borrow cash from your bank when you run out of cash temporarily (limited number of loans however).
- Easier to comprehend training: each rider can spend more or less time training in every rating category, optimising his time to fulfil his potential.
- Equipment: partnership with many real manufacturers lets the player choose among real frames, wheels and helmets. At the start of the game, only standard equipment is available. As the player progresses, he can test new equipment. Each piece of equipment has a direct impact on the following ratings: Flat, Mountain, Time-trial.
- One motivation bonus can be attributed to each rider once in the season. This bonus can be used for any race and maximise the rider's performance.
- Winning a national or world title grants the rider a second motivation bonus.
- Filters facilitate the search of new riders to hire.
- Possibilities to hire scouts to discover a rider's potential and give reports on the physical condition of opponents.
- More information available to the player: list of all trades for the season, list of winners (can be sorted by year, teams, rider or races).
- Easier to grasp trading and contract negotiation system. A contract now includes a monthly wage, a signing fee and a bonus based on the number of UCI points earned by the rider during races (like in real-life). Offering a very poor contract to a rider can now upset the cyclist who can then refuse any further negotiation.
- 40 teams spread among two divisions with promotions and relegations depending on the ranking of the teams at the end of the year. Each division has a different race calendar. While less realistic, this system should be much easier to comprehend for people who are not experts in cycling.
- New and improved AI to select riders for CPU teams. For example, Flanders-type classics riders will start the season in January/February to be at their peak at the end of March when the biggest Flanders-type classics take place.
- Races that were only simmed disappear completely. About 180 stages will be graphically different out of a total of 200 stages per division (lower category races will be based on other races' profiles)
- For each race, the player can choose between playing and simulating. In the latter case, the race is simulated in a few seconds.
- 3 new ratings to improve realism: time-trial, hills and cobble-stones. The difference between riders is now more pronounced to reflect all types of cyclists. - Physical condition reflects the riders' fitness depending on training and races.
- Each cyclist starts with an amount of energy for the season, which limits his efforts during the year. Careful planning is necessary to avoid burning all his reserves in 3 months.
- Some " spice " has been added to stage races with the addition of the possibility for any rider to have an exceptional or very poor day (randomly). Such element means that winning is never sure until the finish line. - All the main national championships are now implemented (Spain, Italy, Germany, France, Belgium, Netherlands,…). The national champion wears a special jersey for a year.
- World Championships based on nationality (like in real-life). The world champion wears his distinctive jersey for a year. A player can manage his national team if his performance is sufficient to be selected.
Race Management and 3D :
- 3 energy " bars " (instead of one) for endurance, medium length efforts and sprint in order to offer better information on the physical condition of cyclists.
- Only one action panel for all riders
- Possibility to select riders through keyboard shortcuts or directly through a selection area in the 3D part of the game (like in an RTS game)
- Feeding your riders at the correct time gets more important in difficult stages
- New animations (4 different anims for each situation like winning, feeding, tiring,….) and improved animations in other situations (sprints, attacks…)
- Punctures during the race. - Time-trial bikes with a special frame for more realism
- Podium (with podium girls!!) at the end of races. - More variety and details in landscapes (crossings, forests, villages,…)
- Better CPU A.I. - All the monuments from big races (Arc of Triumph, Roubaix Velodrome, Brugge Cathedral, Gammont chapel,…)
- Playable through Gamespy
- New multiplayer season mode. Very interesting for online leagues. Based on recommendation from gamers, finances have been taken away from this mode.
- However, trades remain possible
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