Touchgrind HD Review: Bigger screen, bigger price?

This just happens to be the ongoing discussion in the iPhone gaming community: does the bigger screen warrant for my expensive prices?  Most iPad games don’t even do anything other than resizing the graphics and making them look all pretty on the iPad.  But like I said before, other than that, the iPad versions are the same thing as the iPhone version.

And that brings me to Touchgrind HD: what’s so different about it?  The iPad version has the same whatever and whatnot on there as the iPhone version for $7.99 versus the $4.99 price tag on the iPhone.

And while some may view it in that way, I view it in this way: bigger screen equals enhanced gameplay.  The bigger screen does wonders for Touchgrind, including the ability to see obstacles easier and pull off a skateboarding move with much more ease than the small iPhone screen.  There’s also the ability to do split screen multiplayer against your friends and family, bringing the multiplayer experience to the max.

If you think about it though, Illusion Labs didn’t add much to the gameplay other than the two-player, but what brings the game to the wonderous/amazing level is the iPad itself and nothing else.


Visuals: The standard for iPad visuals hasn’t exactly been set yet, so compared to the iPhone version, the iPad Touchgrind looks beautiful.  And when I mean beautiful, I mean luscious with a hint of a rough edge, grrr-ing skateboard-ness (if that makes any sense).  Illusion Labs claims that the visuals were all redone to fit the iPad, and it definitely looks that way when staring into the never-ending abyss of the iPad screen.

The bigger screen: This is why Touchgrind works on the iPad much better than the iPhone: it’s the bigger screen.  The iPhone version had some problems due to such small of a screen, and there were many times when I couldn’t see the obstacle in front of me.  My fingers also decided to be rebellious and block a lot of the screen, making for more of a “looking at your fingers move” type of game than actually taking in the beauty of Touchgrind.

The iPad takes this all away, and you can see your fingers along with the surroundings: the obstacles, the railings, you name it.  While they didn’t add much to the gameplay itself, the bigger screen makes Touchgrind feel like it was made for the iPad.

Two-player: The iPad was also made for this: split-screen multiplayer.  This is something that was impossible on the iPhone, and only a few checker games and such attempted at this.  But the iPad, again, brings a larger screen that has the ability to do these type of things.  I thought the two-player experience was fantastic, and heatedly competing against my brother was more than just a blast.


Touch detection: I had some troubles with the buttons not responding to my touch, and it even went to the lengths of my touch not registering on the board.  This only happened to me once, and as for the buttons, it’s only happened a couple of times.  It’s most likely a bug that’s more than fixable, but it’s a problem I faced at times.

Nothing new: It would have been nice to add some more boards, some more game modes, or even some achievements.  I don’t exactly understand how hard it is to port iPhone games onto the iPad, but still, it would have been nice.

Touchgrind HD was made for the iPad.  If you didn’t enjoy the iPhone version, I can’t think of a scenario in which you won’t enjoy it on the iPad.  While there weren’t many things added to the gameplay, I believe the $7.99 is justified.  It’s hard to explain just how much fun this game is on the iPad, but just take my word saying that $7.99 = good price.

Touchgrind HD was developed by Illusion Labs, and I played through version 1.0.1 on my iPad.  The price is $7.99.

About Daniel

I have been an iPhone game addict ever since the NES emulator came out on the 1.1.4 iPhone 2G. After 2.0 and the App Store came out, my iPhone homescreen has never been the same. Other than writing reviews for App Store games, I play soccer/football, American football, volleyball, and golf. I love going to the beach and fishing on the pier. Some games not available on iPhone/iPod Touch that I truly love are the Call of Duty series, Guitar Hero III, Madden NFL 09, and PGR: Gotham Racing.

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