Disney‘s arcade racerSplit/Second has been released onto the App Store, and I can’t help but be excited. Although it doesn’t look as flashy or amazing as the console version, it still looks good enough to compete with the others in the App Store. The screenshots in the App Store don’t seem to do the game any justice, though, and you can find some real ones below.
But the content doesn’t seem to be plentiful, with only 3 locations and 9 tracks from the console version. It also comes at a whopping $6.99, a price tag most will be cautious with. It also comes with 15 different cars and online, Bluetooth, and WiFi multiplayer.
We can only see if the online multiplayer works well and the single-player campaign is long enough, but from the sounds of it, it may or may not be worth the asking price. I don’t want to make any judgements before playing it though, so you can see the game on iTunes to judge for yourselves.
Fast and Furious is possibly one of the most popular movie franchises in the history of movies… well… almost. But either way, Fast and Furious is still popular nonetheless, hitting the top grossing in box offices numerous times. So with that said, how does Fast and Furious Adrenaline fair in the race?
Well first and foremost, it can be noted that Fast and Furious Adrenaline has the most impressive racing physics I’ve seen in a racing game on the App Store, along with the inclusion of an impressive draw distance. But even with those features, racers are hard to compete against in the App Store, as all are more or less at the top of their game.
So while Fast and Furious has some promising elements, I don’t think it has enough to take it over the top; it’s good but not great.
Physics: Like I stated before, the racing physics are impressive. There are slow motion scenes when your car makes a sweet jump, and whenever you knock down a car, you can see it tumbling down the road. After an innocent car goes down, it can always roll right back and hit you right where it counts. With that said, Fast and Furious Adrenaline has got to be one of better physics I’ve seen in a racing game.
Car design: The sleek, metal look of the cars appealed to my sensitive tastes, and the cars look pretty good. Some of the edges were a bit pixelated, but for the most part, the sleekness of the designs faired well with my critique. It only makes sense though, as the cars in Fast and the Furious look outstanding.
Sense of speed: Have you ever felt your heart racing, or those times when the G-force is pushing onto your chest while on a rollercoaster? Well that’s how it feels, except this time, you’re sitting at home playing a game on a puny device known as the iPhone or iPod Touch. I thought the sense of speed, although not as great as a rollercoaster, will have you feeling a sort of panic inside when turning too late or too early, along with all the good stuff that comes with racing.
Challenge: They addressed the difficulty issues I had with the preview build (or atleast I think they did), and this version seemed far less difficult. It was still challenging though, so for those looking for a good and fair race, this is the name of the game.
Facebook connect…: *sigh* When will developers ever realize that people hate signing into Facebook to play a game… on another device. If Farmville ever comes to the iPhone, that could be an exception, but for the most part people do not like to sign into Facebook. I personally don’t like to, and it’s even worse when features like online multiplayer require you to sign into Facebook. You can still play the story mode, but it would have been nice for everyone to play the online multiplayer and not just a few.
The surroundings: The car design was great and all, but the backgrounds and surroundings were extremely bland. Buildings were a very dull color, the tress were unimpressive, and everything else around you just looked bland. While racing games aren’t about sight-seeing, it still would have been nice if they paid a little bit more attention to the surroundings; I would love to sightsee every once in a while.
Fast and Furious Adrenaline is a competent racing game; it’ll provide you with a few hours of high-speed thrills along with some sweet cars. There are some issues with it including the need to connect to Facebook to access the online multiplayer, but all in all, I thought it was a good racer. It brought enough to the table to differentiate it from others, and it’s almost dirt cheap right now.
Arcade racers have been the definition of gaming on the App Store, as there have been so many of them as of late and of early. Asphalt 4, Asphalt 5, Raging Thunder, Raging Thunder 2… the list goes on and on. But what makes Fast and Furious Adrenaline so different from the others?
And what makes it different from the previous Fast and Furious racing games? Well first and foremost, the most impressive thing about Adrenaline were the racing physics; by far the most impressive I have ever seen. When you knock cars out of the race, they tumble and turn, adding a slight variation to the gameplay so that you must dodge ongoing traffic. Because if you decide to knock over a car, prepare to dodge the rolling car as they don’t just disappear like they do in the other arcade racers.
The car view is also slightly more behind than Asphalt 5, making for an impressive sense of speed. While driving in nitro, it felt like my back was pressed against the chair and I was travelling in full throttle. Fast and Furious Adrenaline definitely lives up to its name when it comes to adrenaline because, again, the sense of speed is far higher than the App Store usuals.
Online multiplayer will also be included in this version of Fast and Furious, and while I haven’t had a chance to test that out, I can only hope for its smoothness. It is all controlled through some sort of “I-Play Lounge”, a feature that I wouldn’t doubt will be implemented into future I-Play games.
The only real problem I found with the preview build I received was the difficulty of each level, a problem that has been going on with all of I-Play’s Fast and Furious racing games for the iPhone. It took me forever to pass the second level, and the third is even harder. While I hope the difficulty is toned down a bit, this build may be almost near the final one.
Fast and Furious: Adrenaline is an impressive arcade racer that I found some troubles with in terms of difficulty, but still, it’s definitely one you should look out for. Visuals are neither impressive nor mediocre, but the racing physics are probably some of the best on the iPhone. The sense of speed is also quite impressive, so for those looking for an intense racer, this may just fit your list.
Oh, and by the way, did I mention replay video uploads?
I recently got the game Ground Effect, and it’s one of the most interesting and fun racing games that I have ever played. Obviously the point of the game is to race other vehicles, but it has a twist that I have never seen in any racing game; the inspiration, title, and core idea of this game came from ekranoplans or Ground Effect Vehicles (GEVs), which are vehicles that can operate over both land and sea. After playing the game for awhile, I firmly believe that Ground Effect is truly an astounding game and deserves to be commended, but there are areas in which it can improve.
Controls: No matter how great a game is, if the controls don’t work then the game doesn’t work either. Ground Effect nails down a solid tilt control scheme, with a secondary option for an on-screen control pad. The tilt controls felt very fluid and natural, and I found myself using them a whole lot more than the control pad.
However, for people who loathe tilt controls, Ground Effect’s secondary scheme is also a worthy alternative. You drag left to go left and right to go right. The sensitivity of the control pad is perfect; you nudge it slightly left or right and your craft will respond. I had no issues whatsoever with Ground Effect’s control schemes.
In addition, the auto-acceleration in Ground Effect is a nice touch; it would have been an inconvenience to have to hold an on-screen button the whole time. There are two on-screen pedals; one to brake with and one that gives your craft a speed boost. The duration of the speed boost depends on how much of the boost bar is filled. The bar recharges and depletes quickly, so you cannot spam the boost button nor can you ignore it; it’s the only way to overtake opposing vehicles quickly
Gameplay: Ground Effect’s gameplay doesn’t have anything substantial; it’s more of a casual game. Don’t that fool you though, Ground Effect is still amazingly fun and you’ll be trying time and again to get 1st place in all of the races.
Graphics: The graphics in Ground Effect aren’t astonishing or groundbreaking, but there’s something breathtaking about watching your vehicle glide over land and water. You’ll never get tired of watching your GEV majestically speed across the surface of the environments, and when you crash against something the resulting explosion is also well animated and implemented.
Game Objectives: Your sole objective in Ground Effect is to try to get 3rd place or higher to advance, or racing a ghost of yourself and trying to beat it. I’d like to see more things to do, such as being able to make other vehicles crash, power-ups, etc. If Ground Effect put in some mission aspects like Gameloft’s Asphalt 5, coupled with a few power-ups a la Mario Kart style, then it could potentially be one of the best games on the App Store.
Craft Selection: There are ten available vehicles for you to select, but the only difference between them is their look. Instead, the vehicles should all have advantages and disadvantages to why you should choose them. Some vehicles should be locked at the beginning of the game, and only getting 1st place on a certain track or finishing a course in a certain time should unlock them. Having ten GEVs that only differ in color is nice, but they should differ in other areas as well.
Overall, Ground Effect is a solid arcade racing game with great controls. The game might appeal to casual gamers more, since there aren’t many objectives and your only goal is to get 3rd place or higher. On the other hand, if you’re interested in arcade racers at all, Ground Effect is definitely worth buying. The ekranoplans and revolutionary land-water racing will leave you wanting to play the game over and over again.
Ground Effect was developed by Glenn Corpes, and I played through version 1.0 of the game on an iPod Touch 2G. The game costs $2.99.
All new and improved versions of both Need for Speed and Asphalt 5 are coming to the iPhone, Need for Speed being changed to a sim racer and Asphalt 5 staying as an arcade racer. Now enough of that aside, Gameloft has finally released some gameplay footage of Asphalt 5, and the graphics seem to be on par if not better than Need for Speed: Undercover.
I’m going to speculate that Asphalt 5 will be with us very soon as gameplay footage has finally been recorded, and it’s not just the cinematic trailer. We can only hope Asphalt 5 arrives this month, and we can only hope that Asphalt 5 will be a blast.
Without further adeu, here’s the gameplay footage we’ve all been waiting for.