The Asphalt series has been around on mobile for years now, but as racing games have evolved, its design is starting to show its age.
So now Gameloft has decided to bring it into the modern age by taking a leaf out of CSR‘s book with the latest entry, Asphalt Street Storm Racing.
It attempts some new things in the drag racing genre, but ultimately doesn’t match up to NaturalMotion’s far superior game.
Asphalt Street Storm Racing strips away most of the elements of an Asphalt game – like steering, for one – and replaces it with rhythm-based drag racing that focuses more on spectacle than skill.
Your main goal is hitting a button to change gears when the needle on your speedometer is in the sweet spot, as well as making sure you get a good start by revving your engine to, once again, get the needle in the right point.
Street Storm Racing puts a spin on the CSR formula by letting you choose when you actually set off, allowing you to gain an extra second over your opponents as long as your launch just send you over the starting line before the countdown ends.
It’s a small addition, but it does add a new layer of depth and strategy – set off too late and you’ll be left in the dust, but set off too early and you’ll instantly be disqualified from the race.
But really it feels needlessly complicated and adds too much weight to the opening few seconds of a race, as even the slightest slip-up at the starting line can cost you the entire competition.
This is especially true online, where disqualification means the race is over right away, and any in-game money you bet on winning is lost simply because you hit a button a fraction too early.
Another new addition is four-player races, which act in the exact same way as a regular race, only there’s an extra two cars involved.
It’s a nice touch, but another ultimately pointless one – it’s difficult to get a four-player race online the first place, and it doesn’t actually add anything to the experience, aside from some more cars on the road.
Aside from these small changes, there’s little to write home about with Asphalt Street Storm Racing.
Cars are earned slowly and take ages to upgrade, and there’s very little to keep you distracted beyond the core loop of race, earn cash, upgrade, and start over.
Crash and burn
Overall, Asphalt Street Storm Racing is a perfectly serviceable CSR knock-off if you’re looking to scratch that itch, and little else.
Adding four-player races and more depth to the pre-race mechanics sounds good on paper, but in execution they add nothing to the experience aside from frustration and more vehicles.
Drag racing is well-worn ground at this point, and the game does the bare minimum to try and add a new twist on a formula that is used to greater effect elsewhere.