Madcoaster Review

Madcoaster is plays a lot like Tiny Wings, but with some important differences. Whereas Tiny Wings is a subtle celebration of flight and nature, Madcoaster is loud, crude, and challenges you to squash as many birds and animals as possible. It’s kind of a mean premise, but gosh, it’s pretty fun.

With Madcoaster, you’re put in charge of a roller coaster that never stops moving. Inexplicably, the coaster’s cars are fully loaded. Let’s assume the passengers died in their sins and are now suffering some kind of endless punishment in an ironic Hell. Sure, roller coasters are fun, but you don’t want to ride them forever, least of all THIS coaster: it never stops, there are gaps everywhere in the track, and it just keeps going faster, and faster, and–

See the world.

Luckily, controlling the action in Madcoaster is a breeze. Simply tap to jump over gaps, and swipe downwards on the screen to switch tracks (whenever there is a lower track available, of course). The ultimate goal in Mad Coaster is to achieve a high score, which is primarily done by collecting coins, running into birds, and squashing the wildlife that is moseying on the tracks.

Like Tiny Wings, Madcoaster grants you a higher score multiplier via an upgrade if you can meet several achievements. Specifically, you can earn a cooler chain of coaster carts if you grab a certain number of coins, or smash a certain number of animal species, or reach a certain distance on the tracks. There are some power-ups to help you on your way, like bird magnets that draw the poor feathered buggers to their inevitable doom under your wheels. B’caw!

Hades welcomes you.

Madcoaster is fun and simple, but maybe a bit too simple. There isn’t much design variance in the tracks, for instance: you’re typically looking at several hundred meters of a straight run, followed by gaps, then loop-de-loops, and so on. There’s never any of the truly crazy drops and twists that you get out of real-world coasters, which is kind of sad. What’s the point of inventing an iOS roller coaster if it can’t even out-crazy the roller coasters in our mundane, gravity-chained world?

To be fair, Madcoaster’s main purpose is to challenge your reflexes, and it does that very well. There is one problem with the game’s intense speed, however. The backgrounds, which are nicely detailed and animated, tend to blur with the foreground when the action gets really intense. There’s a reason why Tiny Wings’ graphics are so simple, open, and breezy. The blur might only be a problem on a case-by-case basis, though, and dependent on how well your eyes can distinguish colors.

At its rickety wood-and-steel heart, Madcoaster is a faster, more frantic take on the Tiny Wings formula. It’s not perfect, but it won’t make you yark up your lunch, either.

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