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iPad  header logo

Re-Volt Classic

For: iPad   Also on: Android, iPhone

Not re-volting

Product: Re-Volt Classic | Publisher: Big Bit | Format: iPad | Genre: Racing, Retro | Players: 1 | Version: Europe
Re-Volt Classic iPad, thumbnail 1
The word that springs to mind about almost every aspect of Re-Volt Classic is 'competent'. Everything it does, it does reasonably well. It never makes you gasp, but it rarely makes you cringe either. It's just quite good.

But in this day and age quite good doesn't cut it. There are so many games vying for your attention on the App Store that if one doesn't blow your face off with entertainment bombs from the get go it's always going to fall by the wayside.

Classically trained

Re-Volt Classic is a port of a pretty well-received Dreamcast-era RC racing game. You drive a little car around a series of tracks that take you through museums, botanical gardens, suburban streets, and famous wrecked ships.

There's a variety of control methods at your disposal. The default takes acceleration out of your hands and lets you concentrate on steering. There's also a passable on-screen joypad and buttons option, and an almost unusable twin-joystick choice.

There's rarely any feeling that you're actually moving really quickly, though, with the oddly lifeless graphics adding to an overall lack of excitement. The interesting bits of the race, when you're bunched together and vying for positions, are too often spoilt by long, boring stretches of chasing or leading the pack.

The controls do little to help, turning cornering into a precision art form when what it really needs to be is a power-sliding grin-producer. Slightly ropey physics add to the feeling that you're not quite attached to the ground.


Mario Kart-style power ups and weapons litter the tracks, and add an extra level of tactics to the race. They're enjoyable to use, but the lack of a multiplayer component ultimately makes them a little drab.

A Stunt mode sits alongside the standard races, and sees you pootling around a track filled with jumps, loops, and other dangerous obstacles. The aim of the game is collecting the stars that sit at the apex of the jumps and in the centre of the loops, which you can use to get new tracks and vehicles.

There's certainly a lot of content to unlock, with extra tracks and new radio-controlled cars becoming available as you complete races in Championship mode and dig up stars in Practice and Stunt.

Difficulty settings can be tweaked to let less experienced racers get a feel for the game, but - while this is a good way to ease newcomers into the Re-Volt experience - it only adds to the strange blandness that permeates every pore of the game.

Even after a last-corner victory, when you should be panting, dripping with sweat, and cackling like an escaped lunatic, all you can think to yourself is “hmm, that was nice”.

Skid marks

The problems add up to create a game that's reasonably interesting, but nothing more. It's a console game that's been dumped onto touchscreen devices with no consideration for the nuances of the new hardware, and it really shows.

Re-Volt Classic isn't a terrible game - for all of its faults there's still a lot here to like. The problem is, its competitors are designed for touchscreen devices, built with mobile gaming in mind, and it leaves the game feeling old-fashioned.

If you're a fan of the original, your rose-tinted spectacles will probably see you through. For everyone else, Re-Volt Classic is likely to be a disappointment.

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Re-Volt Classic
Reviewer photo
Harry Slater | 8 October 2012
There's a strange emptiness at the core of Re-Volt Classic, and while it's sometimes enjoyable, you never feel like you're having as much fun as you should be
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