Developer: Spawn Studios
Price: Free
Version: 1.0
App Reviewed on: iPad 2
Graphics / Sound Rating: ★★★☆☆
Gameplay Rating: ★★★☆☆
Playtime Rating: ★★★★½
Replay Value Rating: ★★★☆☆

Overall Rating: ★★★☆☆

When you think of bike racing, what comes to mind? Most likely a vision of a grown man in a glorified singlet popped into your head, while he is peddling his little heart out. The new game Crazy Bikers 2 couldn’t be further from this image. Imagine a race that consists of characters dressed as mummies, clowns and even zombies. Those goofy costumes are alone enough to justify the name, but does the gameplay make it worth gearing up for?

With a name like Crazy Bikers 2, one would have to expect a wide swath of different racers.  In this respect the game does not disappoint.  Every character has their own unique stats to go along with the appearance differences.  Unfortunately this is about where the craziness ends, because the game is essentially a hill-climbing racing game, with minor physics mechanics thrown in for good measure. Players have the option to perform flips on their bike, either front or backwards, in order to gain a short term turbo boost of speed.

Outside of being able to flip the bike, this is essentially where the variety of the game ends. Sure, there are different backdrops for the two-dimensional tracks, but it is still just the same hill climbing, only with a different skin applied. The only thing that keeps things different from race-to-race are the goals attached to each round such as “perform 2 front flips” or “spend 8 seconds in the air.”

As players progress they have the option to unlock new stages and purchase new racers or tracks, using the currency earned from successfully winning a race or completing goals. While these may provide moderate challenge, it is not enough to get over the monotony inspired by each starting line.

Oh freemium games, how you play with our emotions so… Some games manage to find the perfect balance between ads and action, while other struggle mightily with striking a chord between mere nuisance and outright obtrusiveness. Crazy Racers 2‘s implementation is insanely distracting and interruptive. Before and after every race, a full screen ad hijacks the device and must be manually interacted with in order to make it go away. These ads are on top of the banner ads that already appear on every screen in the game and during every race!  Oh, and don’t even bother to restart mid-competition. Doing so will restart the heat, but as part of the process another ad will pop-up. Except there is one small catch, the other racers don’t wait for you to click out of the ad before starting, leaving you in the dust.  This is poor game design on top of poor ad implementation and is inexcusable.

If you were interested in taking Crazy Racers 2 out for a spin, don’t even bother unless you have plans of paying to turn off ads.  Even then, you will probably not be overly entertained by what lies underneath for any more than a single sitting.  Despite the game being free, sometimes titles are just not worth the hard drive space they occupy.  Sadly this is one of those cases.  Lay on the brakes and save yourself the irritation.

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