A couple of years back, when Kylotonn had its first crack at the Isle of Man’s frankly absurd annual road race, the ambition of the whole enterprise made it easy to forgive any rough edges. Here was the 37.73 mile Snaefell Mountain Course, surely motorsport’s most audacious challenge and an anomaly in the modern era, served up in high fidelity and with the scale – and the scariness – intact. It was worth a punt just to experience that achievement, despite the ramshackle nature of the rest of the package. Now the sequel’s come along and smoothed all that out and more, it’s so much easier to recommend. Indeed, it’s probably the best racing game on two wheels I’ve played in an age.
Which isn’t to say that TT Isle of Man 2 is without its flaws. There are compromises, some fuzzy design and several basic features are plain missing – but they’re far outweighed by all the things Kylotonn does right, so let’s start there. Perhaps the biggest change this time out is how much more approachable it all is. Threading a few hundred horsepower down narrow country lanes is a pretty daunting prospect, so it’s only wise that TT Isle of Man 2 eases you in.
It does this with a swift tutorial, though it’s also fairly throwaway. More convincing is how TT Isle of Man 2 builds its way up to the headline event, its career mode pushing you through some more sedate – well, relatively sedate – road races before you’re unleashed on the island itself. What’s truly wonderful is that after a small handful of these you’ll be able to access TT Isle of Man 2’s Free Roam mode, a moderately-sized open world complete with miles of the open roads from which the game’s fictional tracks are made. The maps themselves are kind-of-condensed takes on real UK places – and if you’re picking up some Forza Horizon vibes then you’re not alone, and I’m sure that’s entirely intentional.