Monkey Racing Review

Monkey Racing Review

Nov 6, 2014

Remember Monkey Boxing? Wanna see those action junkie primates battle in vehicles Mario Karts-style?

Here comes Monkey Racing.

Graphically, it looks good, is effective with color without being overdone. Sound is cheery, animations are smooth, and the different locations are designed well.

Per gameplay, it flows pretty well; the karts work well as the main racing attraction of the game. It feels a little bit like more entrenched racers, but feels sufficiently different that it doesn’t feel like a clone. It comes in two modes, single and multiplayer, and there are also three different levels to play: easy, normal and hard.

As one would expect, the starting kart is basic; one selects a track, and the race begins. In single player, there five competitors, and after the countdown, they actively jockey for position. The raceways are windy, and the touch controls have to be caressed just right to maintain control. For folks like me, it’ll take a race or two — or three — to become fairly proficient. The other racers are not opposed to blocking, either, and the power-ups provide an enjoyable aspect.

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The power-ups are color-coded, and have to be ridden through to be collected. They provide temporary features like immunity and weapons like fireballs that can be used to hammer cars ahead of the players. The strategy cuts both ways though, as other drivers will be firing on the player; when this occurs, an ominous notification shows up on the screen, giving one the opportunity to switch camera views and try to avoid it, or simply activate a temporary immunity pack. There are obstacles on the track that can slow one down, and all together, the action gets busy and tense.

Racing well earns coins, and attributes of the kart like speed and grip can be upgraded via this currency. Beating bosses unlocks new gear; the game also incorporates achievements for brag rights.

Multiplayer games can be created over wi-fi, and are yet another fun angle of this game

It took me a while o get used to the touch controls, but I do love the option of using tilt. The multiplayer option is fantastic, and the advancement structure is simple and straight to the point. The upfront pricing with no in-app purchasing is the cherry on top.

It’s a great game with lovable characters in an irresistible genre. Be careful; keep to a strict schedule with this one.

Sonic & SEGA All-Stars Racing Review

Sonic & SEGA All-Stars Racing Review

Oct 7, 2013

… and it’s about time.

Sonic & Sega All-Stars Racing is the Android port of the ever-popular console game that brings the intense kart racing action to the mobile screen. As is clear from the title, we get the world’s fastest hedgehog and 12 of his in-game cronies as optioned racing characters. The numerous environments are engaging, if a bit whimsical… but that is part of the game’s charm.

Anyone who has played this on a console will be relieved to note that the visuals translate well to mobile devices. The swathes of color are present, making the whole game look like the candy heaven it’s supposed to look light. The sega1animations are sharp and effective, and all the characters are easily identifiable to anyone with a smattering of Sonic knowledge.

The gameplay is standard racing fare; get your vehicle, race the opponents, collect boosts, avoid deployed traps and win. There are different types of vehicles, so there isn’t a fear of being confined to something as conventional as go-kart; if racing a banana (and yes, I am not using street-savvy slang to describe a yellow sports car. I am referring to the yellow fruit) is your flavor, this is the game for you.

The single player racing comes in different flavors: Grand Prix, single race, time trial and missions. I like that it is possible to play in multiplayer mode with up to four players online and local wi-fi; Facebook sign-up ensures that social friends can jump into the action too. The built in tutorial is great, with pointers to effect drifting. It should be noted that not all drivers and locations are available at the beginning; they need to do be earned. There is an in-app store, but isn’t needed to progress.

Gaming and interaction…this game makes it look easy.

RE-VOLT Classic Review

RE-VOLT Classic Review

Apr 29, 2013

Re-Volt Classic is another game that takes savvy players down memory lane. The reboot of the popular console racing game from the late 90’s just dropped for Android.

It is a game based on racing radio-controlled cars, old-school style, across different type of tracks and against computer-generated and controlled competitors.

One of the the games best attributes is the breadth of options. It boasted 42 different type of cars, with different types of attributes: size, handling, power-base and more. To make it more of a challenge, most had to be unlocked to be accessed in real races. There were more than two dozen different race tracks; vanity cruise ships, museums and evenrevolt1 what looked like a 21st century housing development.

There were several playing modes, including single mode, time trials, championship mode, practice and a surprisingly fun and challenging stunt mode. The gameplay itself wasn’t complex; once I got used to the touch controls, it was easy to really get into the racing. I thought the controls were fairly responsive, if a little tight by default. The tracks were varied, as pointed out, and there were some familiar elements, such as collectible power-ups which I could use on opponents, and of course, when collected by opponents, used on me. The hazards were natural; stuff like soccer balls and curbs could be helpful or dangerous. I couldn’t find a way to change the default difficulty level in the version I played.

I thought the game was decent graphically. It stayed relatively true to the original, and there were some great usages of color in the different environments, but I just couldn’t shake the feeling that some scenes could be sharper. My biggest gripes, to be honest, had more to do from perhaps unfair comparisons to the original: no track editing and no multi-player functionality.

Still, I’d be lying if I didn’t say that I was able to get a lot of enjoyment from it. For folks reminiscing, or those looking for a new handheld racing option, this game might fit the bill swimmingly.