Developer: Rally Games
Price: FREE
Version Reviewed: 1.08
Device Reviewed On: iPhone 5

Graphics / Sound Rating: ★★★☆☆
Gameplay Rating: ★★★☆☆
Playtime Rating: ★★★★☆
Replay Value Rating: ★★½☆☆

Overall Rating: ★★★☆☆

A touch on the simple side of things, Top Bot is a fun way to compete with friends in robot themed races. Gather together the right group of friends, and it could prove quite the thrill.

The idea is that players compete in turn based races in order to try to beat their friends’ high scores, without requiring players to be online at the same time. Through the asynchronous multiplayer, it’s possible to dive in whenever there’s five minutes spare, especially as Top Bot offers brief races of three laps. The tracks are randomly designed so each race is different, along with plenty of competition via the random opposition button or by getting friends on Facebook involved.

The races themselves are pretty simple. Using a thrust style movement, players only have to control how high the robot bounces rather than needing to hold down an accelerate button. There are green go faster stripes to help, as well as red gems that can be collected for a speed boost. Power-ups can also be acquired, along with mines to be avoided. It’s simple stuff and struggles with the problem of both being ideal for short sessions, and a little too shallow to be drawn back for more.

The real allure comes from competing with friends regularly. It’s satisfying to shave off valuable milliseconds, in order to beat that friend. A taunt system means players can send a brief message afterwards, too. To add to the fun, customization options mean that players can turn their robot into whatever they want it to look like, something that’s quite endearing when up against plenty of opposing robots.

Ultimately, though, Top Bot is quite a shallow affair. It’s cute and fun at first, but I didn’t feel a real draw to go back for more. At least, not until I encouraged a friend to join in, but I can’t see us sticking to it for as long as other multiplayer games.

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