Even though the Winter Olympics are over you can still become a virtual Shaun White with today reviewed iPhone game – X2 Snowboarding. This digital snowboarding game comes from X2 games and combines impressive game play with graphics are on par with those found on PSP games.

At its core it is a cel-shaded arcade racing game which takes advantage of Apple’s built-in accelerometer to make controlling your snowboarder simple and realistic. Controls are intuitive especially if using the tilt controls. There is also a swipe option to guide your snowboarder if you prefer a more analog style of control.

Game play modes include freestyle, racing and trick based events based in six different world locales.

X2 Snowboarding

Author: Tomas Ratas
Vendor: X2 Games

Price: $6.99

Overall Rating: 4.5/5

From X2 Games, the makers of X2 Football… comes X2 Snowboarding.
X2 Snowboarding is a fast-paced extreme sports simulation, combining console quality graphics & physics with arcade style game play. Players compete in a series of freestyle, race & trick-race events across an international stage.
• Fluid motion and touch controls
• Optimal graphics & unique visual style
• Bluetooth & local WiFi multiplayer
• Full motion-captured player animations
• In-game rewind: re-wind and re-play during your run to retry missed opportunities
• Adrenaline: slow down time and enhance your handling and trick performance capabilities
• Replay save system
• Tru Thoughts Recordings licensed soundtrack: featuring Quantic, Bonobo & Mr Scruff
• Official Salomon in-game boards unlocked as you progress
*****
After learning the basics and earning your boarding pass from the Boarding School, take the character of your choice to the varied international slopes. Choose from 6 colorful boarders; Adler (Germany), Yukiko (Japan), Edward (UK), Katie (Canada), Aaron (America) & Terhi (Finland), each with individual strengths and weaknesses suiting particular playing styles and event types.
Your boarder will be taken from the commercial slopes of USA, to going off the beaten track under the setting sun of Japan, to taking illicit advantage of the ski-only slopes in Switzerland, the perilous back country traverse of Chile, the night-life of a snow-village resort in Canada and the final treacherous cliff edge teeter in New Zealand.
The boarding is performed with an intuitive combination of iPhone accelerometer tilt & on-screen touch/gesture control- with 2 varying tweaked control mechanisms to choose from. Once you’ve got the hang of the controls, you’ll soon realize that X2 Snowboarding is no ordinary snowboarding game!
Successfully performing and chaining spins, flips, grabs, grind maneuvers & buttering bestows your boarder with time-warping abilities to rewind & replay sections of the course in real-time, release adrenaline to slow down time to perfect tricky maneuvers or ‘boost’ to leave your opponents standing. Using these special abilities wisely will give your boarder the edge in competition.
For a different challenge, take on your friends in multiplayer events over a Bluetooth or Wi-fi connection. In our first update (coming soon), online multiplayer will become available allowing for infinite competition once you’ve excelled your friends and our AI.

The Review:

The game starts with a play as you go tutorial stopping the player along their first ride down the mountain to point out different tricks and maneuvers that can be performed. Once this tutorial is finished you on your own to traverse the snow-covered mountains of your iPhone or iPod Touch.

Maneuvers such as jumping, grinding, and in air tricks are performed by pressing the on screen virtual buttons. For instance the jump “button” is found on the lower left of the screen.

Once airborne two on-screen snowboards appears with multiple hand hold points that your virtual rider can grab. Depending on which part of your board is grabbed will vary your tricks. Used in conjunction with the tilt movement controls you’re free to perform any trick your nimble fingers can carry out.

Simple and intuitive controls help set X2 Snowboarding apart from its competitors. The game play is fast so come pushing many of these maneuvers will take nimble fingers.

Another unique feature is the ability to slowdown or rewind time to help recover from horrific crashes. This “bullet time” feature is a nice addition to a fast pace game where crashes can make a difference in the player’s score.

Course locales include slopes in the US, Japan, Switzerland, Chile, Canada and New Zealand. Each location offers differing challenges. There are six snowboarders to choose from each with differing characteristics making choosing the right character as important as choosing the right board.

Picking up coins along the course will do two things – provide a 2X multiplier and help unlock boards in the Board Shop.

The game also features multiplayer support where the player can compete via local wireless connections or through Bluetooth. Unfortunately there is no online multiplayer at this moment.

Visually the game looks great. The cel-shading (such as found in Legend of Zelda – Twilight Princess) works well with the power of the Apple processor as the game plays fluidly. The game settings are accessible via the pause button and numerous options can be changed including the music. If you choose the player can play their own iTunes music in the background in place of the included soundtrack.

Load times on the iPhone 3G are a little bit long as the intro load screen takes 10-15 seconds before getting to the game. Loading up a race takes another few seconds. The loads may be faster on the new iPod Touch models and the iPhone 3GS.

Conclusion:

The game price is $6.99 which is rather “expensive” than cheaper competitors but the game play and graphics make it worth the investment. If you are a fan of racing or snowboarding games in particular then X2 Snowboarding is worth the investment.

Pros:

+Simple intuitive controls

+Use of “bullet time”

+Smooth graphics

Cons:

-Lack of online multiplayer

-Load up times too long

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