Right off the start you get a Wipeout vibe off the game, from the menu, to the track design itself. The thing that will catch your eye right away is the detail of the water.
“Rev up your supercharged jet ski and take a wild ride through twisting canals and rivers, futuristic cityscapes, and mysterious research facilities. Skill, stunts, and speed will be your best allies as you grab massive air off huge waves, kick out death-defying tricks, and boost your jet ski to victory across a dynamic, ever-changing torrent of foam and spray.”
It looks slick, and feels pretty realistic as waves get in your path. This comes into play later on in gameplay, so we’ll save that for later. As for the rest of the graphics, the game doesn’t look bad per say, it’s just not outstanding. The animations of the racers, especially while performing stunts, can feel stiff or robotic at times. Still, it’s a tradeoff you get for smooth gameplay and slick water.
The game relies on tilt controls to control your racer. Automatic acceleration is on by default, but you can turn that off in the settings if you want. The rest of the controls are done by tapping the screen: whether it be braking, boosting, or performing tricks. Although some people might like having the option for a virtual stick, the best part about the game is how clutter free the screen is, making it really easy to control. By using tilt they’ve made it easier to enjoy.
In Riptide GP you’ll have six tracks to choose from, you can also play those tracks in reverse. There are three championship cups that you can take place in, each at a different sped: 250cc, 500cc, and 1000cc. The 250cc is basically for you to get the hang of the game, track design, and the basis of the game; but it’s not until the 500cc cup that things get exciting.
The developers claim to have the best water physics on the platform, and that’s partially true. The water physics are indeed quite impressive, which is something important for a game like this. Where the game disappoints is in the AI, it feels easy no matter what cup you’re participating in at the moment. Even if you’re not up in the front, a simple boost will get you up front.
Among many that have failed, Riptide GP carves a space out among other racers in the AppStore. It’s not perfect, but I’m sure the developer is aware of it. The game is $2.99 on the AppStore and as an added bonus it’s universal, so go get it.