Death-Rally---iOS-Review Death Rally - iOS Review

   31/07/2012 at 09:07       Phil May       2 COMMENTS. - Score 4/5
 - Death Rally, Remedy, iOS, Top Down Racer, Weaponized

Here at AATG Towers, we love a bit of top down action. We also really love racing games where you get a bird's eye view of the track and tiddly cars whizzing round. 

Death Rally, from Remedy (yep, the Alan Wake team) is a remake of a hoary old 16-bit classic given a serious adrenaline shot and visual makeover for the iOS generation. Up till now I've lacked the means to play it, but as you'll recall we got pretty hyped about it just before release. 

I'm happy to report that the game is every bit as good as I'd hoped, and not only that, the serious monetization going on in iOS titles doesn't seem to detract from the game. It's micro-contented up the wazoo but thankfully, stingy old skinflints like me can still find enough in there to love.

You start off with a dramatic cop chase. Trying to outrun a homicidal police chief and his band of blue-shirted goons, you get your first introduction to the game's controls. On the iPad, there's enough screen real estate so that the big ol' virtual thumbstick and sodding huge fire button don't get in the way of the action. A definite plus. Controls are sensitive enough to be effective too, something that we always watch out for whenever a new iOS action game hits the market claiming to revolutionise control methods and interaction. 

After losing the battle with the cops, you end up slapped around the chops a bit and then - Jason Statham style - end up entered into The Death Rally, a combat race where the aim isn't just to win, it's to stay alive. 

As you'd expect from any game of this ilk, you are given the most basic racer to begin with. If you're the sort of person who buys yellow snow from dodgy looking ice cream salesmen on hot days, you can waste a bit of real-world cash upgrading your ride or unlocking extra tracks to race on right from the start. However, as I said at the top of the review, if you're a penny-pinching old mingebag like me, you can save your money and earn in-game credit slowly to build up your racer into something a little more serious. Better still, you can eventually trade in your credits to buy something with a bit more poke and a bit more defensive armour. 

Like the original game, Remedy's new take on Death Rally learns one vital thing about top down racers - they don't need to race off at breakneck speed to be effective. In fact Death Rally might feel a little sedate to some players, but don't let that put you off. You'll see why this is a good thing as you start to race, and the camera starts to track you as you scream around the tightly designed (and incredibly detailed) circuits. 

With two camera options and a few control options to play with, it might take you a while to get the game set up just how you like it but once you do (and once you realise that the default 'distance' camera is probably the best) you'll start to push the envelope, take out your opponents and get a feel for how deliciously satisfying Death Rally really is. 

I'd always imagined that the iPad would be completely hopeless for games due to its size and slipperyness but Death Rally really is rather good and if you've got the advantage of the retina display and pokier processor of the iPad 3, you're in for a bit of a visual treat. Smooth scrolling, achingly detailed (easily on a par with the best top-down XBLA offerings) and very reasonably priced (unless you really have a massive stonk-on for those in-game purchases), it's a superb reintroduction to iOS gaming for me and one that has me wondering what else I've been missing out on since I stopped farting around with Apple's fragmented and expensive 'gaming' platforms. 

Death Rally on iTunes


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