Universal Studios has employed a lot of resources to to promote the movie Fast & Furious 6 that is scheduled for release in May. Their marketing includes two tie-in games alongside the movie release: Fast & Furious: Showdown for PC, PS3, Wii U, Xbox 360, and 3DS and Fast & Furious 6: The Game for mobile devices.
Today, we have tested the iOS version of Fast & Furious 6: The Game, which has been available on the App Store in Canada since April 19. This free-to-play car-racing game is made by Kabam, a developer that mainly makes casual social games like Dragons of Atlantis, Kingdoms of Camelot and Kingdoms of Middle-earth.
Fast & Furious 6: The Game comes as a plot-driven game that brings players into the world of Dominic and Brian. Its ties with the original movie franchise are the major selling point. You will be playing as a newcomer to the street racing circle who has earned some fame and caught the attention of Tej and Brian. With their help, you will practice racing skills, upgrade vehicles, and ultimately become a member of Dominic’s gang of outlaws to join their heist jobs.
The storyline sounds perfectly enticing even for those who are not diehard fans of the Fast & Furious movies, but do not expect too much beyond the storyline, as the racing gameplay is somewhat disappointing. Once a race begins, the car will take off on its own, auto-drive, go around curves, and reach the finish line. Players need to perform the requested tapping or sliding action in a timely manner to achieve perfect starts, shifts, and drifts. You can activate the nitrous to get a temporary speed boost, but still, the vehicle on the screen is not totally under your control, and thus no drag racing thrill can be felt.
Even though successfully completing the required tapping and sliding will gain you bonus coins and boost your speed, the crucial factor in winning still lies in the vehicle itself. In the garage, you’ll find a collection of racing cars classified according to their speed performances. Once you’ve reached the requisite level and collected enough coins, you will be able to unlock those cars. Parts in your already purchased vehicles can be upgraded to increase their performance.
Other than the regular drag races and drift races, the game also allows players to participate in heist races. This sounds great on paper, but the seemingly fancy game modes all play too much the same and each of them fails to provide the challenge that should appear in a racing game.
Regardless of the ho-hum gameplay, the graphics in Fast & Furious 6: The Game are of the highest quality. The 3D movie-like animation qualifies this game as one of the best-looking car-racing games. The cars present in the game are not quite the fancy-luxury-brand cars you would see in games like Asphalt, but they are quite close to the cars appearing in the movie franchise. Fans of the movies will find plenty of great surprises in their garages.
Compared with the previous Fast & Furious game made by Gameloft, Fast & Furious 6 is a bigger disappointment. The game looks awesome, but its gameplay is so boring that it degenerates the fine visual performance to total insignificance.