iPhone App Video Review: Lunar Racer

by Andrew Koziara

Lunar Racer is the latest game from Noodlecake Studios. The studio has prided themselves on making minimalistic and simple games, such as the excellent Stickman Golf and its sequel, and this new game is no different. A simple concept with simple controls that’s easy to pick up and play. It’s by no means a perfect game, but it’s easy to pick up and get into, and it looks and sounds fantastic.

As the title obviously implies, this game is about racing on the moon. In fact, you’ll tour all the popular moons of our solar system by the time you’re done with the game. Acceleration is taken care of automatically. Touching the right side of the screen activates your nitro boost, while touching the left side nullifies that lunar gravity, allowing you to ground yourself whenever necessary. While in mid-air, tilting the device left and right will lead to back-flips and front-flips. Performing various tricks refills your boost bar, and keeping it more or less filled is required for success.

Each track is unique, some with branching paths, and each has three special objectives to achieve. Achieving them will lead to a special bonus level. Each track also has two difficulties. After achieving first place and getting three stars on the amateur circuit, you’ll gain access to the pro circuit. As you do all this, you’ll accumulate moon bux, the games currency. Moon bux are used in the garage to buy new vehicles and customization options. Everything you can buy is entirely cosmetic though, and makes no real impact on the gameplay. It’s mostly just color changing. You can buy extra moon bux in app if you want, but just know that they won’t help you progress at all.

The minimalist art style is very well done, and uses lots of bright colors. The background music is also pretty exciting. The game is fun and generally well made, but it also gets very challenging after a short time. As you play, you’ll collect usable powers, such as missiles, mines, and extra boost. These missiles and mines are often times unavoidable, and the races often seem to be based on luck. I’d also really like to see some alternate control methods, as I’m not a fan of tilt games, but that’s just me. There’s also online multiplayer, though I was unable to find a match. All in all, a good game, but it could use some polish and extra features. You can download this iOS Universal game for one dollar, and it’s sure to give you at least an hour of enjoyment or so.

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