Cheat death and grab loot in this challenging motorcycle game.
Bike Baron for iPhone and iPad reminds us Trials HD on Xbox Live, in that you skillfully guide a character riding a motorcycle through a series of courses, avoiding exploding barrels so that he makes it to the goal in one piece while achieving the best time possible. That said, this $0.99 title has enough charm and one all important feature that makes it stand apart from RedLynx's 2009 release.
The first is, quite simply, personality. The Bike Baron exudes cool, while a small cast of characters (including one Gebetto the Cat) enhance what could have been a sterile experience. Ultimately, we want to learn more about these people and creatures.
Of course, that takes a backseat to the action. Each of the 44 stages task players with making it from point A to point B while earning up to three stars along the way, one for simply reaching the finish line, another for beating their best time and finally, one for collecting all the gold coins strategically placed throughout each track, by far the greatest challenge.
Controls are easy enough. You have right and left arrows on the bottom left portion of the screen, and directly opposite those, gas and brake.
What ensues is a careful balancing act of speed and momentum, as you carefully keep the Baron upright without tipping the bike or falling victim to one of those aforementioned barrels. Hit one, and the explosion sends the dare devil flying, eventually smashing into an object and laying in a crushed heap, his body parts flailing like some injured bug.
It's very Trials like, but the game's biggest draw is the track editor that lets you create stages using a limited number of set pieces and then share these obstacle courses with the world, and vice versa. The user-friendly interface, combined with the joy of building, will keep you enthralled for hours.
Yes, Bike Baron may not be the most original of games, but who cares? This super tough app packs just the right amount of value into a small 37.4 MB package, and with possible updates on the way, you should definitely hop on this ride.
Requirements: Compatible with iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, iPhone 4S, iPod touch (3rd generation), iPod touch (4th generation) and iPad. Requires iOS 3.2 or later.
What's Hot: Interesting characters, enjoyable gameplay, useful track editor, universal, $0.99.
What's Not: Courses are a bit short, maddening difficulty.