Drag Racing 4×4 Review

Drag Racing 4×4 Review

Aug 28, 2013

Drag Racing 4×4 is an interesting racing saga adventure from Creative Mobile.

The graphics are a utilitarian affair; i won’t pretend that I did not wish for more pop, but it worked well, and the animations worked without stuttering. The main race screen has two-car raceway drawn to perspective, with my car in the foreground. At the top there is the entire race in silhouette form, and this allows the racers to see position of the cars in relation to one another even when they are both not in the main frame.

With regards to the action, the controls are fairly easy to understand… almost too easy: a gas pedal, a gear shift and, when appropriate, a nitro toggle. I did like the racing mechanism; he developer did a decent job of wrapping up drag1racing concepts into touch controls.

For example, revving up the car and “warming” the tires was key to getting a good jump at the beginning of the race. Visually, this is represented by a realistic-looking RPM with a green area. Tapping on the gas pedal and keeping the needle in the green helps with the initial jump; it takes a little practice to get this right, too. Subsequently, changing gears optimally helps win races. To effect this, the gear shift is used; there is, again, a green area that represents the best time to shift; when the gear button is tapped at the perfect time, a perfect shift occurs, and the game gives a visual acknowledgement of the achievement. No steering really occurs, and the only other consideration is the use of power-ups (like nitro) and garnering cash to upgrade the base vehicles for battles with tougher racers.

The gameplay is laddered, and higher levels are unlocked by winning earlier and easier ones. I like the in-game purchasing system, as money gained from racing can be put back into the car to improve looks and performance. The career mode is compelling, and races can be repeated to gain more money, which is good, because the stock car goes only so fast as-is. Thankfully, the in-game store is chock-full of options that can be procured with cash, real and virtual.

All in all, it’s a fun game that is easy to learn and enjoy.

Sailboat Championship Review

Sailboat Championship Review

Dec 19, 2012

Sailboat Championship is fun. How fun?

So fun that I actually got lost in the tutorial, trying to break my own record.

In real life, I admit that racing yachts doesn’t exactly tickle my fancy. I mean, come on; I never did the prep school thing, don’t really know my starboard from a starfish and sure as heck am not in need of a tan. Yes, I’d probably watch on tv, but would probably be more interested in watching a lobster boat.

I’m just being honest.

Sailboat Championship didn’t change this, but it did make me appreciate the art of competitive sailing a bit more, and did so while incorporating top-notch graphics, sounds and fun gameplay.

First of all, the graphics: wow. The developer gets lots of praise from me for making water that looked like, well, water. The hues brought the water to life, making it the most important element in the game. The rocks formation and wakes were very nicely rendered, and the animations worked well to. The top-down view of the boat also emphasized the overall craftsmanship of the visuals. Sunken ships and crashed planes provided an eerie backdrop.

The game started with a two-part lesson: I had to learn how to work the sail to maximize wind direction and effect speed of travel, and I also had to figure out how to steer. It might not have been real maritime school material, but for a novice like me, it did make sense and even sparked some appreciation for the science of controlling these vessels. The tutorial-ending time course was really fun. I had to maneuver through buoys and different wind patterns to make it back through the finishing line with the best time possible. I found myself looking to break my own record again, and again.

The actual racing was fun too; the game engine gradually got more difficult, with upgradeable equipment and coins. Beginning with the second stage regatta, there were multiple sea vessels in the races, and the game took on a whole new level, with jockeying for position and more.

Sailboat Championship is a very compelling game, and almost forces addiction.

Reckless Getaway Review

Reckless Getaway Review

Aug 26, 2011

I’m more of a demolition derby kind of guy when it comes to racing games. Running a track backwards, causing pile-ups and watching chaos ensue are a lot more fun to me than the constant striving towards perfection, as you race a tighter line and attempt to shave fractions of a second off your record. Thankfully, there’s none of that in Reckless Getaway. It’s all about over-the-top stunts and crash-’em-up action.

There are two different ways to play this game. The first is Getaway mode, where you’re the wheelman in a bank heist, attempting to outrun the cops at any cost. But the focus isn’t on how fast you can go, it’s squarely on collecting loot, using power-ups and performing stunts as you attempt to break through the road block at the end of each level. There’s also plenty of crashing and smashing going on, but you run a high risk of turning your car into a twisted, burning wreck. Times aren’t important; the only thing that matters is getting to the end while causing as much damage and racking up as many points as possible.

The other way to play is Wreckless mode, where the emphasis is fully on destroying everything in your path from the cab of a semi-truck. It’s similar to Getaway except that the cops aren’t hounding your every move. Your truck isn’t indestructible, but it can certainly take more of a pounding while dishing out plenty of hurt to everyone else on the road. It’s a great mode to play, if you’re tired of being blown to smithereens and want to exact some heavy metal revenge.

Where Reckless Getaway really shines is in the graphics and sound department. The game just looks phenomenal. The top-down, 3D perspective is set back just far enough that you can see all of the action without the cars appearing small enough to get lost in the details. The most impressive aspect, however, is the sound of the game. Every bump, scrape and crash comes right through, lending some credibility to the environment and making for a much more immersive experience. I was particularly impressed by the deep growl of the car’s engine and exhaust note, as well as the sound of the truck revving up to speed in Wreckless mode.

One flaw in the game comes at the very beginning, when you first start it up. Reckless Getaway has to download content before you can play it. I won’t fault the game for this unfortunate approach to content updating, but it was an annoying, unexpected delay that lasted a few minutes, at least. The game assures you that this is a “one time only” process, and while some users have reported crashes during this process, I experienced no such thing. It was a minor annoyance, at worst.

Reckless Getaway is a great looking game that offers a sincere level of fun with plenty of challenge and high-speed thrills.

Neon Racer Review

Neon Racer Review

Apr 1, 2011

Most racing games task the player with guiding their car (or whatever it is you’re racing) through a twisting and turning track. Neon Racer changes the formula a bit; your finger is the “car” and once you touch the screen, the track starts zipping by. Is this unique gameplay mechanic enough to merit a purchase, or should you drive right past this game? Read on to find out.

The core gameplay mechanic is just the basic building block that Neon Racer uses to create a unique gaming experience. Throw in tracks that require you to lift your finger to “hop” over obstacles, and walls that cause instant death when you hit them, and you have a recipe for a one-of-a-kind Android gaming experience.