I used to intensely dislike Robbie Williams for a good number of years – I honestly couldn’t understand why this ex-Take That member and quintessential bad boy had the world at his feet. I hated nearly all of his songs, avoided his videos and wondered about Gary Barlow instead. It was until I heard his fantastic cover of “My Way” many years later that I begrudgingly conceded that Robbie Williams had truly emerged from his ‘boy band’ roots and bad boy ways to become a great artist in his own right.
In Robbie Williams Racing, two seems to be the magic number. Two game modes – vs Robbie and the unlock-able Treasure Hunt; two kinds of terrain: duration and background music for the standard game. The rewards for beating Robbie a certain number of times come as media loot – additional photos, movies and behind-the-scenes videos from his latest album Reality Killed the Video Star.
Graphics and sound effects are adequate for a racing game, though the AI version of Robbie – perhaps to the disappointment of fans is as generic as the character you choose to race against him. RW’s mildly taunting and occasionally friendly soundbytes (“Playing it safe, mate?”) are pretty repetitive and grating at first, but mercifully fade into the background after a while – and you can turn down the volume in the options section, too.
Of course, the one advantage of the in-game music is the fact that it’s Robbie Williams. To give credit to the developers, they didn’t go into RW overkill. The goodies are tucked away as unlock-able achievements, and his presence throughout the game is limited to the music and commentary.
To race, you can opt to use the accelerometer based controls with accelerate and brake buttons, or use touch controls to direct movement. Personally, I prefer tilting to tapping – the latter is wildly unstable and difficult to control.
As for the gameplay itself, it’s standard fare – the game provides occasional speed bumps and obstacles along the way to make things a bit more interesting. A small guide in the upper right gives you an idea of your progress versus Robbie, who is usually just a little bit ahead, enough to overtake with a good solid push on the accelerator. After all, the objective is to unlock his music videos, songs and photos so making it too difficult will defeat the purpose of the game. Online leaderboard integration is also a nice feature thrown in.
Fans of racing games might find the offering on this one too limited, since as I said, most of the options come in two’s, and again, the unlock-ables are not directed towards the game so you won’t see additional game modes or race tracks, or even new terrains. RW Racing does not skimp on the media content, however, and that will please fans and non-fans alike.
As a basic racing game, RW Racing works well enough for (a) casual players who just want a simple, straightforward racing game and (b) Robbie Williams fans who aren’t there for the racing anyway. In reality, RW Racing is a clever marketing and sales gimmick for his latest album. It just happens to be disguised as a racing game. It could be puzzle blocks with his face on the tiles and would still achieve its objective.
However, should AI reach out to more than just Robbie Williams’ fan base, they will have to add more features to improve the racing bit of this racing title. The game isn’t badass as it should be. I have a feeling that’s what RW want a little more.
|Title:||Robbie Williams Racing||Developer:||Artificial Life, Inc.|
|Reviewed Ver:||1.00||Min OS Req:||2.2.1|
|Price:||$2.99||App Size:||70.9 MB|
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