iPad Game Review: Speedway Grand Prix 2011 Reviewed by ColeDaddy
This was a very interesting title as this is a sport that is generally hosted in Europe and doesn't receive enough air play in the United States. That being said, motor speedway is a very dangerous sport whose motto is "No Brakes, No Gears, No Fear". The most notable American rider is Greg Hancock with the rest of the field is dominated by riders from various European nations. Speedway Grand Prix 2011 (or Speedway GP) is Vivid Games latest game now available at the App Store.
"Speedball" and "Ski Jumping 2011" are some of the developer's previous offerings that I own. It was clear that a lot of ?care and feeding? went into these games, so I was looking forward to reviewing Speedway GP. Speedway GP adds a dimension of mystery as not too many Americans are familiar with this sport, so at the very least, the introduction of engaging in a new sport via the iOS was very intriguing.
Interestingly enough, the single aspect of having no brakes in a race was enough of a game-changer to differentiate itself from other racing games. As a gamer with two to three dozen racing games, I am used to pouring on the speed on the straightaways and braking as I enter into a curve. However, there are NO BRAKES! Players navigate corners by leaning into the curve angling your back wheel forward to create some friction, slowing down your bike enough to drift around the corner while repositioning yourself vertically to attack the straightaway and pull away from your competitors. Along the way your visor can get muddied up by the dirt kicked up by the other racers' wheels. One cool innovation requires gamers to swipe their screen to clear the visor in order to see the track much clearer. Nice touch! However, the best way to keep your visor clean is to stay out in front of the other racers!
In most games, my control preferences tend to be touch over its tilt-based brethren because the former provides motion requiring finer and sharper movements. Ironically, in Speedway GP, I found the tilt-based option to be far more superior due to the broad angled swath your bike must make to round the corners.
The overall gameplay was fun and exciting; fast and furious. The learning curve for this game isn't very high, but it does require a good measure of responsiveness and timing in order to win and advance to the succeeding rounds.
The graphics on Speedway GP are colorful and excellently illustrate. The UI is polished and user-friendly. The accompanying animation is smooth.
The digitally-rendered sound effects accentuate the overall ambiance of the racetrack. Not only are gamers enveloped by the sounds of the motors churning in the mud, but there appears to be what sounds like distant horns playing in the background making for a delightfully, delirious strange concert furiously blended with the madness surrounding the race. The soundtrack attached to the game screens is appropriately full of bass and aggressive beats that welcome you at the splash screen and continue throughout.
If you'd like a racing game with some bite and verve, you'll want to try Speedway GP. There's enough grit and grind to intrigue even the most jaded enthusiast of racing games. This one is a Keeper!
Ratings (scale of 1 to 5):
Graphics: - 4.25 - The graphics are clean, gorgeously depicted and stellar. Sound: - 5 - Deliciously realistic, you'll instinctively try to clear your palate of mud?that's how close to the action the sounds and sights pull you in. Controls: - 4 - The tilt-based options provides the cleanest and most responsiveness given how quickly one must dig into corners and pull up for the straightaways. Gameplay: - 4.5 - Great replay value for a uniquely intriguing game. Overall: - 4.5 - Fast and furious enough to satiate those fixated on fun and funk. C'mon! "No Brakes! No Gears! No Fear!" Buy it already!
Playing Hints and Tips:
Given the uniqueness of the gameplay mechanics, it would behoove you to skip the Quickplay option and go straight to the Tutorial. Trust me! Also, as simple and intuitive as this sounds, do not touch the screen when the starting bar is flush, or you'll get tagged for a false start.