PLEASE NOTE: If you would like to post this on your blog or website please ask me first and include a link to this thread in your article.
Best place to get me is by message on Xbox GT: Euphoric Fusion, or via Twitter @euphoricfusion as I rarely visit here anymore.
As we all know, the Trials series can be daunting for any newcomer.
My first experience was with Trials HD and I played it for about 2 days before giving up. What the top riders could do amazed me and I never dreamed I would be able to get anywhere near that level of technique. Little did I know that most came from playing Trials 2 SE and had carried their knowledge and experience over to Trials HD. Some just plain figured the game out faster than I could.
Something drew me back and I'm glad it did.
Over the past few years my level of understanding grew, and with it my technique improved.
By no means do I consider myself an elite rider, but I have the knowledge of what is required to get good times by the things I have learned along the way and by sharing that knowledge I hope you can get back on the bike and go a little faster than before.
These tips and techniques are aimed at people who are new to the game and will take you from the most basic of tips and techniques right up to advanced moves to help you shave off those precious seconds. I am also in the process of building some riding tutorial skill game tracks as an actual aid to the following tips so you have a place to practice them.
This will take me some time but it should be worth effort. If I think of any other things I'll add them here.
With that out of the way, let's get to it!The BasicsUnderstanding the Controller
Everybody has the option to use either the left stick or d-pad for rider lean, and A+X or LT+RT for accelerate and brake.
The triggers are analogue and are essential for maximum control over accelerate/brake so ditch A+X as fast as you can if you are using them. The sooner you learn to use the triggers the better. (more on this later)
Also in my experience the left stick much better for rider control than the d-pad.
The d-pad makes the rider lean very aggressively and can make things more difficult to handle.
The left stick is more gentle with the rider. It's easier to gradually lean forward or back and this can help with smoothly riding up ramps or to balance yourself. In short, the left stick is easier to perform a deft touch, something which can be crucial.Scorpion or Phoenix? Which one should I use and how are they different?
The Scorpion is the heavier of the two bikes but has a higher top speed compared to the Phoenix. It is mainly used for high-speed and flowing tracks where you can maintain top speed for long periods. Think beginner-medium tracks for this one.
The Phoenix is the definitive bike and as such will most likely be the main obstacle for newcomers to get to grips with in terms of it's characteristics when compared to any other of the standard bikes in the game.
It's acceleration is unrivalled, the brakes are fierce and it is extremely agile.
Once you begin to understand the Phoenix then your chances of beating those hard and extreme tracks will increase dramatically. Body Weight Shifting
By leaning the rider forward or back with the left stick you can control the bike in a whole manner of different ways.
Flicking the left stick to the left will shift the rider's weight over the rear wheel while flicking the left stick right will shift the rider's weight over the front wheel.
Note that I said flicking and not holding.
Holding the left stick to the left will shift the rider's weight over the rear wheel and also makes him pull back on the handle bars.
Holding the left stick right will shift the rider's weight over the front wheel and he will try to force the handle bars down.
These 4 different weight states are the basis for every move in the game.
Remember also that by not holding a direction the rider will absorb bumps as well as the suspension. Holding makes the rider more ridged and the likelihood of you catching a wheel on an obstacle will be much higher. (more on this later)Throttle Control
Good throttle control is a key part of Trials. The trigger is analogue and you will need to learn to use it's whole range to get the most out of it.
A gentle squeeze while holding forward will allow you to climb steep inclines with relative ease. You can even accelerate the Phoenix from a standstill without leaning by feeding the throttle on gently so mastering it is paramount to control.
It's also important to know when to lift off the throttle early so you can drop nicely into the next section. Flat out is not always fastest!Minimum Height
Airtime might look awesome but in reality you are just creating a bigger arc which equals more distance and a longer time to travel. Keeping your height as low as possible over jumps and still making the next section will help you shave off a little time. Your forward momentum is also progressively reduced whilst airborne.Keep in Contact
Any time your wheels are in contact with the ground or obstacle you have the use of the bike's power to drive you forward. Any obstacle you attempt you should aim to keep your wheels in contact as much as possible so you can get maximum acceleration and don't waste time hanging needlessly in the air.Go Slower to Go Faster
It's better to stop and steady yourself and clear an obstacle first time than it is to try and fudge your way through it at full throttle. A quick tap of the brake is great at a checkpoint just so you can prepare yourself for the next obstacle.
Take your time, learn the track section by section first and build your speed up from there.Break it Down
Breaking down an obstacle into simple controller inputs is the key to consistency and predictability.
By approaching each checkpoint as the start of a new obstacle you need to try to remember the inputs used to clear it. Hit B and reset as many times as you need before you figure it out and it starts to sink in.
Doing this will give you a reference for the next time you approach it and you will be able to clear it easier each time.
For the start of The Wreck I simply remember forward-back-forward with full throttle. I probably have every input stuck in my head from each obstacle on every track and it's this approach that will help you get more consistent too.
Once you know how to clear each obstacle consistently from the checkpoint it will become easier to link them together and carry your momentum from the previous obstacle into the next when your skill level rises.
Trials is a puzzle of timing and you need to simply put the pieces together to get a clean run.Intermediate LevelJumping Techniques
1) A burst of throttle and a quick back-forward will make the bike perform a bunny hop. Hold back for too long and you will just flip over. Keep an eye on the front wheel and how high it gets before flicking forward as it will determine your angle of launch. I find that doing back-forward-back instead is much more effective as the rider pulls the bike back into him and you can gain a little height and distance.
2) Leaning back at the start of a ramp and then forward just as you reach the peak helps you get further too.
3) Simply leaning forward (don't hold) and hitting a ramp can also be good for keeping your trajectory low.
4) Leaning back (don't hold) usually gives a smooth arc.
5) Holding back can give you extra height. Landing Techniques
1) In general it is best to land back wheel first with the rider leaning back and the front wheel slightly up. The landing is good and fairly predictable but the main thing is to get your wheels back on the ground as soon as you can. Remember time in the air is time wasted!
2) The most common method of landing is essential for linking obstacles together and maintaining the flow.
Angle the bike slightly nose down and hit with the front wheel first, holding back on the left stick as it makes contact with the ground. This will make you transition smoothly on to the back wheel which sets you up nicely for a bunny hop by flicking forward once the front wheel begins to rise.
3) This next technique is my most used and it's become second nature.
When in the air and preparing for landing, angle the bike about 40 degrees (front wheel up), weight back, then lean forward just before landing and back just after landing. This makes the bike reach for the ground (wheels down sooner) and it also softens your landing.
4) Landing on the back wheel when you hit a down ramp can give you a good boost out of it too.
5) Landing on inclines can be tricky at the best of times. The most important thing to remember is to try to not hit your front wheel first.
You need to either land with both wheels as equally as possible with your weight already forward, or preferably back wheel first and lean forward on contact to get the softest landing.
When you hit the incline it's usually good to let go of forward for a split second before reapplying it. This will give the bike a chance to settle and your back wheel should stay in contact.
Balancing the throttle about half way while landing can be great for keeping the bike steady when landing on an incline and you will be less likely to flip backwards.
If you bounce a little after contact a quick back-forward motion will make the rider lift the bike up and nicely plant the back wheel back down. Master this and that bounce that sends you over backwards will be a thing of the past.
6) Knowing when to not hold a direction can also be very useful as the rider will absorb bumps better than holding a direction at the point of landing.
The jump over the logs near the start of “Truth is Out There” is a good place to try it (2nd obstacle).
Jump from the platform and as you get to the logs hold back on the left stick. The back wheel should hit the logs pretty hard and you might flip over after.
Now do it again and just position the bike ready and let go of the left stick as you get to the logs. You should skip over them nicely.Advanced TechniquesUnderstanding the Suspension
Any time the bike lands or hits a bump the suspension will compress and rebound. Learning to anticipate this and how it effects the bike will really up your game.
If you are able to time your inputs to coincide with peak suspension travel you can jump further, higher and carry more speed. It is also the key to linking multiple sections together.
Being able to anticipate how the suspension will compress when landing is crucial to keeping flow into the next obstacle.Spring Jumping
The best place to practice this is at the start of “Elevation” with the Scorpion.
Hold back on the approach to a ramp and get the bike into a wheelie. As you climb the ramp hold forward and the rider leaning coupled with the rear suspension decompressing will force you into a front flip which gives you much better distance with a low trajectory.
The timing for this takes a LOT of practice and it's even more difficult with the Phoenix.
Perfecting the spring jump can save you alot of time. Also doing a mini spring jump over a bump is faster than hitting it and catching air.Switch Hop
The nasty barrel near the end of The Wreck is the best obstacle to try this out on.
Once you jump up to the barrel get the front wheel on it and hold the brake whilst holding forward. You will perform a nose stall and the rider will start to tip forward. When the back wheel is at about 40 degrees let go of the brake and quickly shift your weight back. This will make the rider pull the bike up and in, enabling you to to switch from front to back wheel whilst keeping the bike in contact with the same spot on the obstacle and setting up for a hop to the next platform.Back Wheel Bounce
The technique for this is similar to my most used landing technique. A good place to practice is the start of "Dark City Run" where you can back wheel hop over the alleyway.
When in the air and preparing for landing, angle the bike about 40 degrees (front wheel up), weight back, then lean BACK just before landing and FORWARD just after landing. This makes the rider hit the back wheel hard, compressing the rear suspension and launching you up and forward.
This is damn hard to get right on a regular basis. Front wheel too high and you are going over backwards. Too low and you will just land and set the front wheel down.Brake Hook
A good place to try this is on Inferno 3 after you have jumped the 2 barrels after the set of palettes.
Roll to the end of the platform and once the front wheel is off the end hold back on the left stick AND the brake. The back wheel will grab the edge of the platform and you will swing right underneath.
You can do the same thing with the front wheel. If you roll backwards off a platform, hold forward and the brake to grab on with the front wheel. As you swing underneath switch your weight back and release the brake to flip down.Fender Grab
If you can get an object caught between the rear wheel and the fender you can perform a Fender Grab.
On “Fishy Business” if you jump from the 2 circular angled platforms and drop in to the down ramp directly after you can get a good jump from the next bit of plywood towards the 2 horizontal pipes. When you are airborne hold forward so you do a front flip. Keep the throttle down and you should be able to get the top pipe caught between the rear wheel and fender. The throttle will will make you rotate over it. Brake Tapping
Holding the throttle and holding forward while tapping the brake will increase your clockwise rotation. What you are essentially doing is transferring the rotational momentum of the back wheel to the entire bike by constantly locking it up.
You can use it to flip forward faster if you have under-rotated, or to correct a nose stall before a switch hop. If you get the timing right you can rotate the bike from an almost horizontal position all while balancing on the front wheel!Double Pump
This is when you perform the bunny hop motion whilst in the air. It's good for gaining a little distance to reach that landing cleanly. If you think you are going to land a touch short of where you need to be just do a quick back-forward to pull the bike a bit further.Extra Tips and TricksGet the Best Start
The majority of the time it is better to NOT hold a direction at the start before the countdown has finished. Doing so can lift the wheel up and you will lose time. Just wait for GO to appear on screen before moving the left stick for the best start possible.Huge Drops
Don't hold the throttle on massive drops. "Rollercoaster" has a huge drop that passes through some water. Releasing the throttle after the start of this drop will give you a huge speed advantage.Stretch For the Finish!
The rider's head is what activates checkpoints but most crucially the finish. Don't forget to lean forward when you head for the line!Tame The Inclines
Sometimes you can be faced with what seems like an impassable near vertical obstacle.
As an example let's use the steep ramp after the scoreboard on "Dark City Run".
Position the bike at the foot of the ramp with the rider leaning forward. Hit the gas and do a quick back-forward motion on the left stick.
This technique should lift the front wheel enough to smoothly start the incline when you hold back, followed by the forward input on the stick which will straighten the bike up and level the wheels out with minimum bounce enabling you to complete the obstacle with good speed.
This technique will work 90% of the time on that obstacle as well as any other steep starting incline.
i've got another one for ya to add if you want. it's actually from jhitman, and i think he said he got it off Murdoc Loch (have i spelt that right?).
if you land on a steep incline with your back wheel hitting just before the front wheel and tap brake, you'll be able to almost immediately accelerate from there up the incline. the back wheel just grips straight away, no bounce. so land and brake at the same time, and then accelerate straight after.
....front wheel bounce that I haven't seen in this thread. I had to do it in trials evolution but I have seen videos of trials2 where this trick was needed.
You can see it in this video, it's the last obstacle before the finish. You cannot simply do a break tapping on your front wheel there, you'll need a good bounce.
Track details: Shang's Garden by Synapsis
So there we have it. Sorry for the wall of text but I thought it best to get this up as soon as possible and add to it as I go along.
I just hope this helps some of you to get the full enjoyment out of the game.
If you have a question about something I will do my best to answer it.
Feel free to add any other tips yourself (or to correct my terminology) and I'll add them to this post so we have a definitive guide to help people improve.
Now get on that bike and set some personal bests!!!