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Hands-on Preview: Real Racing 2

Posted by Jeff Scott on December 10th, 2010

For the past few days I've been lucky enough to kick the tires of Real Racing 2, the successor to the multiple award winning racing game. Real Racing for iOS really pushed the boundaries of what a mobile device can do rivaling the best that the PSP can offer. Real Racing 2 takes the core of it's predecessor and amps it up in pretty much every way. Better display, more races, real licensed cars, and an amazing 16 player online multiplayer racing mode. 16 players! On a mobile phone! And it's way more than what a PSP can offer.

So, how is it? Well you'll have to wait for our full review next week. For now, enjoy this teaser video showing the game in action.

Real Racing 2 will be available on December 16th for $9.99. Here's a full list of features straight from Firemint:

Real Racing 2 features include:
- 30 officially licensed cars
- 16 car grid against AI, and 16 player online racing – an iOS first
- Career mode with well over 10 hours gameplay and a range of event types
- Earn in-game currency to buy and sell cars, and buy upgrades
- 5 game modes: Career Mode, Quick Race, Time Trial, Local Multiplayer (8 players), Online Multiplayer (16 players)
- 15 locations with 40 miles of highly detailed race track
- Vehicle damage
- Online Save Game
- Game Center and Cloudcell integration, multiple profiles
- Wide range of control options
- HUD with minimap that can be turned on or off
- 5 camera angles including fully 3D cockpit view, and TV style replays
- Powered by Firemint’s exclusive Mint3D™ engine

Be sure to click through to the full post for some sweet screens of Real Racing 2!

Real Racing 2 Will Include Licensed Cars From BMW, Chevy, More

Posted by Jeff Scott on November 24th, 2010

12/9/10 - UPDATE: New Trailer:

12/3/10 - UPDATE: New Screenshots:

11/24/10 - UPDATE: New Gameplay Trailer:

11/19/10 - UPDATE: New Trailer. Feast your eyes on this:

Firemint today announced that the upcoming sequel to Real Racing will include licensed cars instead of the nameless cars of the original. We've seen Firemint release a special version of Real Racing for Volkswagon (Real Racing GTI), but this will be the first time that licensed cars will be including in the main game.

While this isn't a big deal to many, in the world of video games this feature sets the high end racers apart from the pack by adding a certain prestige. Not to mention people love to drive cars that they could never afford to own, even if it is in a video game. I think this announcement just sets the stage for what we can expect from Real Racing 2. I think we can expect some amazing features in Real Racing 2. But what the wizards at Firemint have up their sleeves, we don't yet know.

What new features would you like to see in Real Racing 2? What other cars would you like to see in Real Racing 2? Let us know your thoughts in the comments and we'll let you know more details on Real Racing 2 as soon as we are allowed to!

We don't yet know the full list of what cars will be included in Real Racing 2, but in the above image you can see the 2006 BMW Z4 M Coupe on the left and the 2010 Chevrolet Corvette C6.R on the right. Seems like a good start, but I'm sure we'll see more.

Flight Control Takes Its Multiplayer To Game Center

Posted by Chris Hall on November 10th, 2010

When I first heard about multiplayer gaming on Game Center, the first thing I thought of brutal bouts of casual gaming goodness. There is just something heart pounding about playing someone else in a game that isn't overloaded with overly caffeinated teenagers screaming "Head shot... loser!" Sure, there are many people, including myself, who are excited about first person shooter/action multiplayer gaming on the iOS, but my heart just wants to beat up on someone in a mellow game of Flight Control... and by golly, now I can.

To celebrate the release of GameCenter on the iPad with iOS 4.2, Flight Control is adding a slew of features to the Apple Design Award winning game. To help scratch that competitive itch, Firemint is adding an iPad exclusive verses mode map that can be played locally in the app or via Game Center or local Wi-Fi/Bluetooth multiplayer. Not to cut out the peaceful gamers out there (and I'm sure there are many), Flight Control is also adding a co-op multiplayer game that can be played universally via Game Center too, in addition to the already available local Bluetooth or WiFi . Like everything else on Game Center, you can either invite your iOS gaming friends or you can play with/against random players all around the world.

Since I have no chance at competing in the single player high scores, maybe it'll be possible for me to compete with the masses in some co-op multiplayer gaming. The update isn't out yet, so hang on to your excitement, but Firemint expects the new update to Flight Control to be out right around the release of iOS 4.2. See you online!

Real Racing on Sale For First Time Ever!

Posted by Ryan Wood on September 30th, 2010
iPhone App - Designed for iPhone, compatible with iPad
Our rating: starstarstarstarstar :: Best Racer Ever :: Read Review »

Editor's Choice and 5-star rated Real Racing is finding itself on a week long sale beginning September 30. The 40% off sale will bring Real Racing down to the low price of $2.99 for a limited time. For those of you unaware of the racing powerhouse, you can find our glowing review here.

Those of you well versed in the beauty that is Real Racing understand what it means to get such a great app for such a low price. Even if you own it, don't forget about the 6-person local multi-player mode. Snatch it up for a friend through the gift-an-app program and introduce someone else to this racing giant.

Firemint is celebrating this sale by offering their Twitter and Facebook communities a chance to win promo codes for free copies of Real Racing. Send a tweet or like them on Facebook and your set. (Full Contest Details).

In case you need additional convincing, Real Racing took, among other things, Best Game Graphics, Best Racing Game, and an honorable mention as the best app of 2009 in the Best App Ever Awards last year.

Flight Control lands over three million sales, $3814.67 a day

Posted by Kyle Flanigan on September 8th, 2010

Eighteen months ago, the then-little-known developer company Firemint published Flight Control - a game where you land increasing quantities of planes on runways with a limited amount of space both on the ground and in air. It was awarded five stars across the board by 148Apps, as well as the Editor's Choice badge.

Today, Firemint has announced that sales of Flight Control have passed the three million mark - on average, a little over 5500 copies a day are bought by new users for their iPhone or iPod Touch. At $0.99 a piece, with developers earning 70% of revenue, that totals just under $2.1 million for Firemint's work - or, to put it another way, $3814.67 a day. In other statistics, some two billion planes have been landed according to Flight Control's online leaderboards, equating to 2548 planes a minute or a little over 42 every second.

Apple CEO Steve Jobs announced on September 1st that the iPod Touch alone has more than 50% of market share for portable gaming, outselling Nintendo and Sony combined. The App store has already enjoyed over a quarter of a billion downloads to date, reflecting the ever-growing importance of third party application developers and their software.

Firemint's Cloudcell to work alongside Apple Game Center

Posted by Kyle Flanigan on September 3rd, 2010

Firemint, creators of Flight Control and Real Racing, have announced that a number of in-game achievements and leaderboards for their popular games will integrate with Apple's soon-to-be-released Game Center application, built to bring iPhone and iPod Touch gamers together both socially and competitively.

For Flight Control there are currently three known achievements: Safety Card (read the game tutorial); First Flights (land an aircraft on every level) and Jet Power (land 20 jets in a game). Leaderboards will also exist, presumably for each level, to see exactly who the best flight controller in the world really is, and how you stack up against your friends.

Real Racing will see at least five achievements, including: Real Racer (complete a race using methods B or E); Between the Lines (win the race without going off track); Clean Sweep (get all gold in a championship); Perfectionist (beat the gold qualifying time for all classes) and Cream of the Crop (rank in the top 100 for any track).

What makes Firemint's integration with Game Center so unique is that the developers won't be scrapping their established CloudCell platform, which already provides features that Game Center offers, like leaderboards. Instead, where possible, achievements and leaderboards will exist to offer those with older devices a chance to get in on the action. "Originally launched in April 2009, Cloudcell enables extensive connected features and is currently being streamlined to make it even easier to use and even more unobtrusive" writes Firemint. "As well as extensive online leaderboards, both Real Racing and Flight Control integrate with Twitter and Facebook, making it easy to share new personal bests."

Game Center is supported on the iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4 and third/fourth generation iPod Touches, and will roll out next week with the public release of iOS 4.1. If you haven't yet bought Flight Control or Real Racing, you can read our reviews at the links below. Real Racing was awarded the 148Apps Editor's Choice badge.

Real Racing, Flight Control updated for iPhone 4 Retina Display

Posted by Jeff Scott on June 22nd, 2010

The increased resolution of the iPhone 4 has been the point of a lot of conversation from the moment it was first announced. Most of the conversation focusing on if it really is a "retina display," one with such a high pixel density that the human eye can't see the individual pixels. And around that, most of the conversation had to do how great text will look on the display. But what about games? How will the increased resolution impact games? Can they actually approach photographic quality? Wow, that would be staggering -- and I can't wait to see it!

In what I believe are the first games to be approved to take advantage of the Retina Display on the iPhone 4, Real Racing and Flight Control updates are now live. They include increased resolution graphics to fit the new display -- rather than rely on pixel doubled graphics. In addition, Real Racing control has been updated to take advantage of the gyroscope in the iPhone 4. It should provide for even better control of the steering in the game.

Firemint announces free update to Flight Control for iPhone

Posted by Ben Harvell on May 13th, 2010
iPhone App - Designed for iPhone, compatible with iPad
Our rating: starstarstarstarstar :: HIGHLY RECOMMENDED :: Read Review »

Firemint has launched an update to its popular Flight Control game for iPhone. The update, available now, includes a new map, updated graphics, safe fast-forward plus new sound and music settings.

Flight Control is a highly addictive strategy game in which users take control of a selection of airstrips and must guide different planes and helicopters to their destination. While things start off easy, you’re quickly swamped by jets and light aircraft that need to be designated a runway before they crash into others.

First things first, the new map. Windy Airfield brings a new dimension to the already frantic action with runways opening and closing at timed intervals. Users will need to keep an eye on a windsock in the middle of the level that moves around to denote a change in wind direction. The direction of the wind affects which runways are open. Aircraft already on approach will still land but you’ll have to find an alternate runway for the rest.

So far, the new map is generating excitement among players with many uploading their score to the online leader board. A Google map is currently displaying where the high scores are coming from around the world. Check it out here

Flight Control’s graphics also receive a boost in this update with much brighter colors to help you spot those incoming planes quickly.

Another big addition to Flight Control is the safe fast-forward option that was launched in Flight Control HD for iPad. There are now three speed settings from “Off” through “Locked Fast Forward”. “Safe Fast Forward” speeds up the game but alerts players when a collision is imminent and slows the game back down to normal speed so you can avert disaster. Fast forward is sometimes required during the game to speed up the action and get on to higher scores but, use it carefully or you could cause an aeronautical pile up.

As far as settings go, Flight Control will now remember a user’s sound and music settings which can be altered in the app’s Pause Menu so you don’t have to change them each time you play the game.

As an added bonus to celebrate the update, Firemint has also released a free Flight Control wallpaper for iPhone users which can be downloaded from the Firemint site here.

iPad and desktop wallpaper is also available.

This is a great update from Firemint and we look forward to many more soon as well as tweaks to the iPad app. Check it out today by heading to the updates section of the App Store via your iPhone or in iTunes and, if you haven’t downloaded the game already, do it now!

iPad Game Preview: Real Racing HD

Posted by Jeff Scott on April 2nd, 2010
iPad App - Designed for iPad

I make no bones about it. Real Racing is my favorite iPhone game ever. I've always been a fan of racing games. Real Racing just hits a chord with my by making the game fun, very well made, and not crazy complex (and boring) with car customization options.

While I haven't seen it yet, this is a preview you know, Real Racing HD looks to be everything that I love about Real Racing, but on a much bigger screen.

“We’re all very excited about the launch of iPad, and Real Racing HD really shows off the new possibilities that come with this breakthrough device," said Firemint CEO Robert Murray. "Real Racing is all about authentic pack racing action. iPad is incredibly immersive and personal so playing the Real Racing HD App will be an adrenaline-fuelled rush.”

One of my biggest concerns with Real Racing HD, and any racing games on the iPad is how you will control it. When a racing game was shown at the iPad launch I was initially excited. Then I started to think -- who wants to hold a 1.5 pound $500 device as a steering wheel controller? Not me for sure. Not only is it heavy, but seems like the risk of dropping it is increased greatly with rapid gameplay. Luckily it looks like Firemint have put some thought into this problem and implemented some iPad specific control schemes.

In addition, Real Racing HD adds some ghost racing options, and the ability to customize your car skin by importing an image from your camera roll. Real Racing HD is available now in the App Store -- even if you don't have an iPad to play it on!


iPad Game Preview: Flight Control HD

Posted by Jeff Scott on April 2nd, 2010
iPad App - Designed for iPad

Flight Control is one of the best and best selling casual iPhone games ever created. It started the whole line drawing genre and was one of the first iPhone games to sell over a million copies. It has now sold over 2 million copies and spawned Flight Control HD, it's big brother.

Flight Control HD is more of what you love Flight Control for. It also adds lots of features that you could only appreciate on the iPad. The split-screen 2 player mode sounds like a blast. Firemint have also added a 3D level to the game -- but you need the blue/red 3D glasses to see it.

The iPad is the perfect device to play this game on. It's large screen allows you to see more of the area and not have the planes be as obstructed by your fingers. Some say that Steve Jobs created the iPad specifically so that he would have a larger screen to play Flight Control on*.

Here are the official list of features for Flight Control HD, available now on the iPad.

Flight Control HD contains everything included in Flight Control for iPhone and iPod touch, as well as many additions and improvements for its arrival on iPad:
  • More ways to play, including multiplayer modes that take advantage of iPad’s innovative Multi-Touch interface.
  • Split-screen “versus” mode: play competitively by sending your planes to capture aircraft from your opponent.
  • Co-operative multiplayer on a single iPad: share landing duties with a friend on one of three HD airfields.
  • Multiplayer on two devices (selected from iPad, iPhone or iPod touch): land aircraft of your own color, and direct others off the screen for your fellow Controller to land.
  • More space to land your planes and bigger airports thanks to the large iPad screen, with three new HD airfields.
  • Beautiful high-quality graphics throughout, including an all-new menu and updated graphics for the Classic airfields from the iPhone version.
  • New Snow airfield with variable wind direction in addition to the four Classic iPhone airfields (Original, Beach, Carrier and Outback) and three HD airfields, for a total of eight single-player airfields.
  • Quirky “3D view” airfield brings Flight Control to life like never before – use red/cyan glasses to see aircraft floating above the iPad (3D glasses not included, widely available from retailers such as amazon.com at low cost).
  • Many more enhancements including all-new path continuation, improved collision warnings, a new “safe” fast forward function, and a longer version of the Flight Control song that you just can’t get out of your head!

The Flight Control HD App for iPad is available for US$4.99 from the App Store on iPad or at www.itunes.com/appstore/.

* This is a complete lie.

VW Partner with Firemint for VW GTI Advergame

Posted by Jeff Scott on October 22nd, 2009

Firemint have developed a special version of their racing game, Real Racing, to help promote the 2010 VW GTI. You could even win a GTI by playing the game. Details on the contest will be posted soon.

VW tapped Firemint to create a special version of their Real Racing, sort of a lite version, with tie-ins to the marketing campaign promoting the 2010 GTI. The app was released late last night at the conclusion of a special premier event in New York hosted by G4's Olivia Munn. Sorry to say, I couldn't be there.

The game itself is a slimmed down one based on the engine of the five star racing game we love so much. The main focus of the game, of course, is to push the new 2010 GTI. So, that's the only car you have to drive in the game and you only have 1 course to drive. What this will give you is a good sense of the realism and amazing console-level quality of the full game, Real Racing.

Try out the 2010 GTI version of the game and if you like it, I highly recommend that you pick up the full version, Real Racing. I really can't say enough good things about it.

App Store news Round-up for August 12th

Posted by Jeff Scott on August 12th, 2009

Phil Shiller is writing back to Steve Frank about the App Store approval process issues. While we wait for Steve Jobs to return our correspondence, here's the latest from the app store.

More Wolfenstein! The game was originally created by Id Software, ported to the iPhone by Firemint, and now published by EA. Delayed for nearly 2 months so as to not compete with with Wolfenstein 3D, the game was released yesterday at $4.99. A low initial price for an EA release.

It's an interesting idea for a game. Take the Wolfenstein 3D game and add an RPG element to it. Early reader reviews are great. We'll try to have a review up in the next couple days.

Plushed looks lush. Plushed, a new game from Blacksmith Games has a fantastic art style. Platformer + goth + pizza = Plushed? We'll have to wait and see if the gameplay delivers. Take a look at the YouTube video for more. Blacksmith Games is also doing a promo where the more people that follow them on Twitter, the lower the launch price of the game will be. Expected release date is September/October.

Push, bid, push, bid. Ebay have updated their app to include push notifications for outbid alerts and watched items. You still don't have a chance against the snipers though.

Real Racing (Updated Version 1.10)

iPhone App - Designed for iPhone, compatible with iPad
By Jeff Scott on July 17th, 2009
Our rating: starstarstarstarstar :: Best Racer Ever
Real Racing has taken a little longer than anticipated to reach our anxious little hands. The extra time was used to fine tune and perfect the game. It appears from the time I've spent with the game that it was well worth it.
Read The Full Review »

Firemint Kick The Tires of the iPhone 3GS

Posted by Jeff Scott on July 1st, 2009
iPhone App - Designed for iPhone, compatible with iPad
Our rating: starstarstarstarstar :: Best Racer Ever :: Read Review »

Firemint gotten their hands on an iPhone 3GS and decided to take it for a little test drive. With it's increased processor speed, better graphics processor, and extra memory, it's built for killer games. The best way they came up with to test drive the 3GS was to make a special version of their fantastic racing game, Real Racing to stress it. The normal version of Real Racing has 6 cars on the track at once. Their iPhone 3GS test version has not 12, not 20, but 40 cars on the track at the same time! Take a look at the demo video below for the amazing proof -- the real fun starts around 30 seconds in.

[youtube Z7SnwkdHO2o]

Amazing, just amazing. Looks like they might have even been able to put even more cars on the track! If you haven't picked up Real Racing yet, what are you waiting for? It's the best arcade game we've seen yet for the iPhone.

Flight Control 1.3 Update Adds Peer to Peer Cooperative Multiplayer

Posted by Will on June 29th, 2009
iPhone App - Designed for iPhone, compatible with iPad
Our rating: starstarstarstarstar :: HIGHLY RECOMMENDED :: Read Review »

Firemint has just released a 1.3 update for their extremely popular Flight Control game that adds the ability to play cooperatively with a friend over bluetooth. Flight Control has sold over 1,000,000 copies on its way to becoming an App Store classic.

Flight Control is a deceptively complicated game in which you must guide planes and helicopters to their proper landing places by drawing paths with your finger. The game starts out very simply with very few vehicles on screen at a time, but quickly ramps up in difficulty as more planes and helicopters of varying speeds appear on screen simultaneously. If anything collides, the game is over. When Christine reviewed the game, she gave it a perfect five stars.

In previous updates, Firemint has added new maps and online leader boards via the Cloudcell service. Now, in order to utilize the new 3.0 software for the iPhone and iPod Touch, Firemint has added bluetooth play so you can share air traffic controller duties with a friend. No wifi is required, as you simply need two devices with bluetooth capabilities (note: only the iPhone 3G, iPhone 3GS, and iPod Touch 2G can use bluetooth).

In this new mode, you and your friend share a cumulative score for a game. Each person has a complete map on screen (you can either use the same map or different maps), but can only land planes of a certain color. If a plane appears on screen that you cannot land, you have to direct it to the side of you screen, which will cause it to appear on your partner's screen. This makes the game even more hectic, as you have to manage planes that both normally appear on your screen and those redirected by your partner all while trying to communicate with your partner.