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PlayStation Vita  header logo

Jet Car Stunts

Flying in the air

Product: Jet Car Stunts | Developer: Grip Games | Format: PS Vita | Genre: Action, Racing | Players: 1 | Version: Europe
Jet Car Stunts PS Vita, thumbnail 1
I've spent the past five minutes trying to envision a flight path between a green cube and an orange pillar, both of which float motionless high up among the clouds.

This isn't a normal thought pattern for me. Jet Car Stunts has turned me into a wannabe Evil Knievel, a stunt car racer of the skies.

A chunky golden star highlighted by a godlike beam of light awaits my vehicular embrace. But only if I manage to figure out a viable launch point for this daredevil stunt stewing in my mind.

And once my car is in the air, I then have to reach the right velocity with measured use of jet engine thrust and angsty air brake steering to connect with the star.

I've already sailed past the star at breakneck speed many times, my wheels and rudders locked to the side as I will the car toward it. It's tough. Really, really tough. Maybe even too tough.

The new "Collector" mode in Jet Car Stunts on the PlayStation Vita is designed for veterans of the game. It's for those who have already mastered the swooping deathslides and enormous loops of the game's "Platforming" and "Time Trial" challenges.

These two modes were already available in the mobile version of the game, and they hold up on Vita even better than before.

Jet plane

The Vita's thumbstick makes it easier to take those tighter turns than it was with the original tilt controls. Using the triggers for the jet-powered boosts and air brakes also has more of a bite to it. It feels good to operate, and most of the time you feel in control of the power at your fingertips.

I say "most of the time" because, well, you are wrestling with a jet engine inside a lightweight racing car.

The absurdity of this motor's set-up is reflected in the track design of Jet Car Stunts. You're hurling a car through the air with blue and red flames pushing it along at ultra high speed.

You fly a mile across the sky between platforms, through huge hoops, and drive upside-down in loop-de-loop patterns.

You're taught through trial-and-error to master this monster. You learn the nuance of lining up the vehicle correctly before a big jump, and when to flit the boosters rather than slam the trigger down for full power.

It is hard, and it can be frustrating. But those with enough resilience learn to accept the crashes and retries as part of the ride.

At some point, you'll grow confident in your ability, and replay track to grab those gold medals that felt so distant before.

What really helps you through is having the ghosts of better players driving alongside you (or, usually, far in front). They show you the ropes. And where the track fails to indicate adequately where you're heading next, they act as guides.

Pilot's license

More than that, they show you high-risk aerial shortcuts that you wouldn't have imagined by yourself. On one track, a fellow racer used the starting ramp of a loop to get enough air to launch their car to a distant part of the track.

It felt impossible at first, but upon getting it down, I was able to shave a whole five seconds off my best time.

This passive form of online co-op, which is more present in the Vita version, helps to ease you into the game's high challenge, and gives you something to aim for.

All of this featured in the original game on mobile, but the Collector mode throws a figurative spanner in the works. Where you once thought you knew every subtle curve and bump of the track, Collector shows you new paths.

The geometric shapes that you only saw as roadside decoration before are now ramps and bridges. You're encouraged to think outside of the track, to go off-road, and to make beelines across the sky to collect stars.

Not only has Grip Games made Jet Car Stunts feel right at home on Vita, it's managed to get even more out of the game's original content.

The game's high skill bar means that not many will be so enthused about these even harder jet-powered platform-racing challenges, though.

This is a fun game, but you might not realise it until your 15th attempt at a track.
Jet Car Stunts
Reviewer photo
Chris Priestman | 27 October 2014
Jet Car Stunts feels right at home on Vita. The new Collector mode gives veterans something to sink their teeth into, but newcomers may be put off by the game's difficulty
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