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Asphalt 8: Airborne

Gameloft
Version: 3.2.1 | 12+
ArcadeRacing

Asphalt 8: Airborne

The eighth offering in the Asphalt series, the game arrives as a very slick and well-packaged racing game for iOS that sadly retains the rather aggressive in-game purchase system. That said, this ladder and series based racing game offers a mixture of single-player campaign and online multi-player races.

While the game structure is focused around the pay-to-play model, it is a freemium title - that is to say that you can play through the game without spending dime one, but the game will throw up the odd blockage and then encourage you to pay to get past it rather than work at earning what you need to do so.



The game features a rather lengthy and complete selection of tracks and environments, with eight seasons of increasing speed classes and 180 races in total.

Add to that the online multi-player mode with its maps and race types and what you have is a very entertaining auto racing game that is arcade-caliber and packed with fun in bite-sized chunks - perfect for the iOS platform.

While the base game is free, the in-game purchases include a number of different types of Car Packs, from Class-based Packs to Specially Themed ones. Class-Packs range in price from $1.99 to $4.99 while the Theme-based packs range all the way up from $24.99 to $99.99.

In addition to the car packs that you purchase in-game for real-world money, there are also cars that can be bought with the in-game money (which you can also buy using real-world funds).



As you begin each race the game prompts you to make in-game purchases (for real-world money) of resources like Nitro, Tuning, Extra Tanks, and Credit Doublers, which range in price from .99 cents to $1.99 in real-world money, and 3K to 4K of in-game funds (which the game calls Credits).

Game play is massively intuitive starting with the controls, which in place of the usual touchscreen based focus instead use the motions sensing hardware of the iOS device so that you literally steer the car by tilting the screen. That is awesome no matter which iOS device you happen to be playing on, but really stands out well in iPad.

Braking is a tap (or holding) with your left thumb, and boosting with Nitro is a tap (or hold) of your right thumb.



The game is organized in tiered races for both single-player campaign, as well as online multi-player. Your driving record and wins as well as the different style actions you complete in each race directly impacts your capabilities in the game.

For example driver and car level - increased by racing - directly effects what cars you can race. Winning races - and often just racing in them - results in earning the in-game funds called Credits that can then be used to purchase new faster and more capable cars.

The game races are divided up into racing seasons, and unlocking the next season generally requires the player to earn the target number of stars by racing in the previous season.

For what you get the graphics in this racing game are actually pretty amazing. It's not the ultra-realism of Forza, bur the cartoon-like animation of the typical arcade style racer - and when we say arcade style, think the sorr of game you have to put a coin in to play.

For an iOS title the graphics are pretty slick, and the animation is smooth and easy on the eyes, particularly the well-defined racing environments and the detailed cars - both yours, the other racers, and the civilians you run into a lot.



The game features a basic upbeat background music that changes with the environment, as well as sound effects for the different actions - like drifting or hitting the Nitro Boost.

Bearing in mind that this is a typical freemium game - fully functional but packed with lots of offers and reminders that you can pay to make the many small impediments go away - it is also a fully playable free download and one of the better racing games out there for the iOS platform.

Strictly from a longevity view it has very long legs with a lot to offer, making it a natural for your game play rotation set.
4.0 / 5.0
 
review by CMBF | Oct 30th 2014

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