Publisher: Illusion Labs–Price: $4.99–Practically everyone with an iDevice has heard of Touchgrind, the phenomenon that got everyone skateboarding. Illusion Labs, which also created Labyrinth, Labyrinth 2, and some other iDevice games. Recently, Illusion Labs released Touchgrind BMX, a BMX biking version of Touchgrind. A main difference I saw with the original Touchgrind was the abundance of tutorials. It seems to me like this game is a lot easier to understand than its predecessor. Before each ride starts, the loading screen has a quick how-to for a trick. This is great, as it jogs your memory before you start. There are a couple of quick tutorials that give you a good feel of the game, and the last one is more beneficial to watch after you’ve played a few times (it’s about maximizing your score).
Graphics are decent on this game, nothing too amazing. The bike looks good, but sometimes the scenery is a little pixellated, and sometimes vice versa. In game settings, you can turn on retina display, which obviously enhances graphics, but lowers the game’s frame rate, meaning it may not run as smoothly.
Customization was a substantial part of the original Touchgrind, and it’s only gotten better in this edition. After you get a certain amount of adrenaline points (accrued upon completing challenges, or getting a high enough score), you can change up the paints on your bikes, as well as earn some new ones. The bikes are pretty creatively designed, and all differ greatly from one another, both in terms of style and ease of use (each bike has its advantages and pitfalls).
As far as courses go in Touchgrind BMX, you get a new one as you gain more adrenaline, and each course has its own kick to it. The first few courses are easy to ride, as there is generally one path to follow when riding. But as you get to more complex courses, there is more than one path, and you have a much higher chance of falling.
Overall, Touchgrind is a pretty solid game. Apart from a few bugs I encountered, notably choppy performance while riding, the app is stable, and with all of the content it boasts, it’s sure to keep you entertained for a while. The pricing is a little steep, but if you enjoyed Touchgrind, this game is definitely a must-buy. 10 out of 10, Thumbs up!