Cro-Mag Rally - Review

One result of Windows Phone arriving late to the smartphone party is that the mobile Xbox Live lineup consists mainly of iPhone ports, with a few exclusives here and there. Many of the iPhone games are outright classics like Doodle Jump and Angry Birds, and we’re all better for having them available to us. But not every iPhone game is worth playing; for every big hit, many, many terrible games make it through as well. One such flop made the jump to Xbox Live for some reason: Pangaea Software’s Cro-Mag Rally. The Windows Phone port comes courtesy of Citizen 12 Studio.

Cruise past the break for our full review.

Cro-Mag Rally version 1.1 update passes the checkered flag

Last month, WPCentral broke the news that Cro-Mag Rally, the prehistoric-themed Xbox Live kart racer from Citizen 12, would be receiving a title update. At last that update has hit the Marketplace.

Cro-Mag Rally version 1.1 release notes:

  • Lower camera for better overall car control
  • Implement auto-accelerate.  You no longer need to hold down F to keep going. (F is still displayed on screen though.)
  • Tweak physics for cars on medium difficulty to make them a little less grippy (easier to drift through turns)
  • Tweak control response curve to make it more "linear" (and thus more responsive at smaller angles off-center)
  • Tweak dynamic range of the sensitivity setting. The least sensitive setting should require nearly 90 degree rotation of phone to achieve maximum turn. Most sensitive setting requires only about 30 degrees to achieve maximum turn. 
  • Lower maximum speed for all cars in certain tracks (the more curvy ones) in order to slow down the overall pace (and make them a little easier). Does not apply to Expert mode.
  • Tweak the wall collision code to prevent certain instances of being able to go off map

In short, karts now auto-accelerate and the camera angle offers better visibility. After putting in a quick race in the updated version, I definitely prefer auto-acceleration to holding a ‘Forward’ button. The game’s handling still feels a little wonky, but there’s only so much a developer can do post-release. Props to Citizen 12 for taking gamer feedback into account. Check out our previous article for the developer’s full explanation behind the patch.

Cro-Mag Rally costs $2.99 and there is a free trial. Gather it here (Zune link) in the Marketplace.

Enigmo - Review

iBlast Moki may have been the first Xbox Live physics puzzler on Windows Phone, but the genre itself goes much farther back. Take, for example, Enigmo, a game that Austin-based Pangaea Software originally published on personal computers in 2003. The puzzler met with huge success at the time, and has since been ported to a variety of platforms as well as spawning a sequel. The Windows Phone port of Enigmo comes from fellow Austin developer Chaotic Moon Studios. It’s a no-frills port, but the cerebral gameplay holds up quite well.

Splash past the break for our full review.