It’s usually smart to avoid a speeding train. Especially if you want those stars.
You can score up to 4 stars for any individual race. Each time you wreck your car or get busted, you will lose one star. You “fill” the stars by earning points, either through stunts, power-ups, collecting coins, or wrecking cops. Once you accumulate enough stars from each event, you unlock more chapters and regions in the game.
There are multiple routes on each course. The powerup button on the right is Eliminator.
Since individual stunts don’t yield many points, I haven’t paid attention to what names actually pop up on the screen, you still should be able to harvest a fair score from taking advantage of any ramps and shortcuts.
Reckless Mode: there won’t be any shortage of explosions while playing this. The stars and health are on the top left while the score/stunt bonus and power ups are on the right.
The control system is just like Reckless Racing. You’re given a fixed camera angle and must use the on screen arrow keys to maneuver your way around the course. Although the option for tilt control is there, I would advise against using it, simply due to the way the physics and vehicle motion work in this game. Either way, the arrow keys should only take about a minute to get used to.
A scene on one of the desert courses. The powerup on the right is Boost. The traffic and obstacles on the track make this a challenging game.
To be honest, the new design suits the game much better than that of Reckless Racing. It adds a casual, relaxed feeling to the gameplay, similar to Mario Kart. A cop chase in Reckless Racing would have felt extremely out of place since the original title aims to be a top-down racing sim.
Get out of my way! As you can see, some parts of the game look ok, while others…not so much. This is one of the better scenes.
My last complaint about the graphics is the resolution. It’s not as low as 480×320, but it seems to be something in the middle for high end devices. I can’t be sure but it seems to be rendering at 640×480 or something of the sort on my 800×480 device. It’s no where near as crisp as Reckless Racing PLAY on Android, let alone the retina display.
What do you hear when you’re driving down a 2 lane road on a nice day? Now imagine adding a bunch of explosions, wailing cop sirens, and constantly honking traffic, all paired with a fast paced arcade sound track, much like that of Tilt to Live, to that mix. That’s Reckless Getaway’s audio in a nutshell.
Just like in Tilt to Live you lose track of time once the background beat has fully engulfed you. After a certain point, all that goes through your mind is what appears on the screen. Avoid traffic. Blow up cops. Jump off any ramp. The theme is simply perfect for the game.
The other sounds you’ll hear, like vehicles, sirens, explosions are crisp and clear. However, that’s all you’ll hear. The rest of the environment doesn’t always feel real. When you drive over a bridge, you don’t get the feeling that the rapids you see below are actually there. Whenever a tram or train pops up, it makes the same exact sound.
Overall, the music is highly immersive but some parts of the atmospheric audio could be better.
Audio – ★★★★
Unlike Reckless Racing, this game has no multiplayer component. The problem with this approach, as seen in the past, is that the single player mode must be long and compelling enough to justify the purchase. We can probably forgive Polarbit for that since one of the only reasonable ways to implement multiplayer would be a co-op mode. Another mode could have been “Cops and Robbers”, in which one player, the cop, would attempt to catch the other, the thief. Polarbit has been updating the game with content every few weeks, so we can always hope multiplayer will be added.
Both modes, Reckless and Getaway, feature 20 unlockable events; this gives us a total of 40 levels. Each of these events takes between 4 and 8 minutes to complete. Now, the game provides no difficulty presets. Instead, it’s designed so that the levels become increasingly arduous as you progress. So while a beginner level would take 4 minutes to complete, one of the levels near the end would take 2 or 3 attempts, each taking 6 or 7 minutes.
The event menu. There are 4 events per chapter.
That might not sound like it’s too much, but there is a certain level of re-playability for each individual level. Various approaches for completion are incorporated into each course. You can replay the same race around 3 times without repeating your moves, since the game provides a myriad of alternate routes, each with its own perks and detriments. With everything taken into account, gameplay time should be over 5 hours.
Leaderboards are handled by Polarbit’s proprietary system rather than OpenFeint. The system is more or less generic; it shows you your rankings for each level among every other registered player. There aren’t any real Achievements, aside from a list of completed stunts. I haven’t had any problems with stability. The game runs at a fluid 60 FPS and hasn’t crashed a single time.
Replay – ★★★★
Polarbit’s newest title will cost you $2.99. About half the price of a fresh title from Gameloft or EA but with similar gameplay times. If you’re into racing games, I’d even say this is one of the best pick-up and play titles available for the genre. The same can’t be said of Asphalt or Need for Speed, since they are large games with long loading times and events. They don’t provide the ability to squeeze in a level anytime, like Angry Birds and Doodle Jump do. Reckless Getaway does a nice job of accommodating this quick, casual style. If you’ve got $3 to kill, I would put this game very high in my list of recommendations.
Value – ★★★★★
You may think this new art style is new for Polarbit, but if you’ve been gaming on iOS since the original Armageddon Squadron and Raging Thunder games, it should be clear that Reckless Racing was the deviation, if anything. Whichever format you prefer, the developers have shown that they can release smooth, high quality games on all platforms regardless of how they look. Most of all, they’ve proven that they are the masters of making casual mobile racing games. Raging Thunder, and both Reckless games are fantastic choices that can be enjoyed anytime, anywhere.