Days of Thunder in Review- Vintage Cruise

daysofthunder1From the days long gone, when Tom Cruise felt the need for speed, got involved in some risky business, and was counted among a few good men comes the racer based off the movie Days of Thunder. Despite the source material, which does not need to be seen to understand the story or mechanics of the game, Days of Thunder (the App) stands strong as the first stock car racer the AppStore has to offer.

daysofthunder2For its comparatively low price point of $2.99, Days of Thunder offers a full gaming experience that will last hours. This is no exaggeration. It is fast becoming one of my favorite racer my iTouch holds. As the developer wrote in their website:

“[Days of Thunder is] the first stock car racing game on the iPhone and iPod Touch! Experience all of the adrenaline and action
packed excitement of full contact stock car racing while battling the field and climbing the leaderboard! As Cole Trickle, use the
iPhone’s accelerometer to speed your way through six racing circuits, defeat your competition, and win the Days of Thunder Cup.

A steady hand, lead foot and fearless drive to win will take you to Victory Lane – YOU CAN’T STOP THE THUNDER!”

The story itself seems a bit unsubstantial, but I do have to admit that there is a good feeling of action and adrenaline while I play the game. Considering that this is on a mobile platform, this is quite a feat.

daysofthunder3Days of Thunder is played in enclosed tracks with stock cars. There are 12 tracks and 14 cars that can be unlocked as you progress in the game. Racing is controlled with a brake and accelerator on the left and right. Steering is done with the accelerometer. While all this is standard, Days of Thunder does add certain gameplay elements that are unique.

One element is the health meter of the cars. As you drive and face impact after impact with other cars, both your and your opponents’ cars receive damage. If you lose all your health, your car is totaled and stalls for 5 seconds. After that time, you regain a little bit of health.

daysofthunder4If your health is low, you have the option of taking a pit stop. When you are near the pit area, an option appears in the left side of the screen that you can press. This will take you into the pit where your car will gradually become repaired. The side effect of this is that the other racers are still going, so you will slip back in position.

This profoundly changes your strategy. Do you want to hang back and then go forward at the last lap? Do you want to trade paint with others and be forced to take a pit stop? Will you hammer ahead and hope no one catches up? The strategies become varied with the inclusion of the pit.

daysofthunder5Another unique gameplay element is the addition of “Dropping the Hammer”. When you drift behind your opponents, you build up the meter. Once it reaches the top, you press the right side of the screen. You’re rewarded with a significant speed boost and a split second of invulnerability. For as many times as I’ve used this function it never gets old.

The two drawbacks to this game, though are graphics and sound. While functional in appearance, there are better looking racers out there. Also, even though there are 5 music tracks for the game, some of them feel more of a distraction than anything else.

daysofthunder6Days of Thunder is a refreshing take at the racing genre. The damage and hammer additions really enhance the enjoyment and gameplay strategies. If you are looking for a racer that seeks to break the App Store mold, then this would be a good place to start.


pp Summary
Title: Days of Thunder (v1.0.1) Developer: Freeverse Inc.
Price: $2.99 App Size: 46.0 mb
  • Drop The Hammer
  • Damage Physics
  • Unique AppStore Racing Experience
  • Midrange Graphics
  • Music May Not Be For Everyone


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