MotoGP 22 is the last official game in the MotoGP franchise, developed by the Milanese studio Milestone. The game has seen an annual release with the studio since they bought out the MotoGP license in 2012/2013.
I say redeemed because he released a game before 2013, MotoGP ’08, but it was a unique game. The games were improvement year after year in most aspects and the studio even ditched its own in-house game engine in favor of the Unreal Engine for the 2018 release.
It is therefore not surprising to see that MotoGP 22 takes another step forward for the series by improving the physics and visuals.
MotoGP 22 also adds a few new additions to the series. There’s the documentary-style “NINE Season 2009” where players can relive one of MotoGP’s best seasons to date which also happened to be Valentino Rossi’s last championship victory.
The other big new feature this year, and the one I’m going to talk about today, is the Ride Height Device – or “RHD” for short. This replicates technological advancements made in the real world, as all teams in the top MotoGP class use this device to great effect.
What is a ride height device?
A ride height device is used by MotoGP riders to compress the rear suspension of the bike and therefore lower the center of gravity and provide better acceleration as the risk of wheelies is reduced.
First developed by Ducati and introduced for its factory bikes in 2019, the ride height device was originally known as the punch down device.
Being the innovative team that they are, Ducati have designed a system that allows the rider to mechanically lower the rear of the bike to get a better start. By turning a “wrench” on the dash on the starting grid, the rear suspension would compress and lock, lowering the rear of the bike.
This would give the rider a better start because the bike was less likely to roll—where the front end lifts from growth—meaning the rider could open the throttle more without consequence.
I’m RHD, I’m Dynamite
Soon the other manufacturers will follow suit, then Ducati will innovate again by developing the device to be used during a lap.
This quickly became known as the ride height device. The RHD works the same way as the punch device, except it can be activated by pushing a button rather than turning a key. It is mainly used when exiting a bend leading to a straight line.
It is initiated in the middle of the turn so riders get maximum acceleration on the fastest parts of the track without having to worry too much about the front wheel going up in the air and being disabled by hard braking. That means there are only a few places a rider can use it effectively.
A front RHD has also been developed but is now banned in real-world MotoGP from 2023 and is not in the MotoGP 22 Game.
How to activate the ride height device
Activate the ride height device in the MotoGP 22 the game is simple. Depending on the platform you are playing on, just press the Y or Triangle button to activate it. As in the real world, RHD is only used in the top MotoGP category.
Simple isn’t it? Well not quite you can use it coming out of each corner if you want, but you won’t.
When to use the ride height device
Permanent use of the ride height device will not result in a faster lap time; you will find yourself fighting with the bike struggling to control it.
The best places to activate the RHD are coming out of corners that lead to a straight, like the last corner of Losail Qatar on the start/finish straight.
It works in-game and in the real world, squatting the rear of the bike, reducing wheelies and allowing you to use full throttle and thus achieve maximum acceleration without having to worry about those pesky wheelies. .
It’s best to use a time trial, the MotoGP Academy mode or a free practice session to work out for each track which corners you can start RHD in before heading down a long straight.
Also don’t forget to enable RHD for race starts, this will really give you a rocket start compared to a regular start.
Primed and ready to go
Like real cyclists do in real life, you can prime the ride height device in the middle of the turn.
The RHD indicator on the HUD is gray when not in use, yellow when primed and ready to go, then turns green when activated.
So for example when entering the last corner of Mugello, which is a long left corner, when you reach the middle of the corner you should press Y/Triangle, the indicator will turn yellow to show that the RHD is primed .
Then, on the exit of the corner, when you raise the bike and open the throttle, the RHD will then activate by turning the green indicator. It is triggered when the angle of inclination of the motorcycle is reduced.
- Gray = ride height device not used
- Yellow = ride height device primed
- Green = active ride height device
Don’t worry about the RHD can not being activated in the middle of the turn would cause a lot of problems, speaking of which…
You pick me up, so I can turn the corner…
The only way to deactivate the ride height device is to brake hard, pressing the Y/Triangle button will do nothing once already primed or activated. It is therefore advisable not to use it all the time.
I personally experienced it on different tracks and different corners, take for example the Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli. Tried to use the RHD out of turn 10 Tramonto, quite a tight hairpin, this then leads to the fastest section of the track including turn 11 Curvone.
It’s a fast right hander, trying to turn RHD off for turn 11 is difficult, either you end up braking hard and slowing down too much – thus wasting time – or you don’t brake hard enough to turn RHD off so you end up until understeer off the track. Understeer is the reason you don’t want the RHD activated in the corners.
This also applies to race starts. You’ll need to make sure you brake hard enough for the first corner if you use RHD off the line, as Jack Miller found out the hard way at Silverstone in 2019. Miller started the race third and used the device to perforation for racing. start, but as the race to Copse Corner is a short distance from the start, he barely touched the brake.
The shooter did not disengage causing it to understeer towards Maggotts. He described the situation as “drive a helicopter”.
The final result
The ride height device in the MotoGP 22 can improve your lap times, just remember when to use it and when not to use it.
Experiment first. Learn the tracks and where the hard braking zones are for each. The best thing to do is a lap without using the RHD, then a lap while using it, because you’ll soon find the best places to use it effectively.
One bend may lead to a straight line, but does the next bend require hard braking?
Remember it’s good to prime the RHD mid-turn as it won’t activate until you exit the turn and again remember to use it for race starts. Don’t forget to press this button…
Be sure to check ROBO46’s YouTube channel for more MotoGP 22 content.