Polarbit has made some really good iOS racing games, and their newest effort focuses on the kart racer. Cracking Sands pits you in a micro machine going up against five other racers in a mad dash to the finish. The goal is to simply finish first, however you can whether it’s your racing skills, weapons, or nitro boost. The game is instantly familiar to other kart racers, and is a bit like Death Rally. You can’t completely destroy an enemy, but machine gun, rocket launcher, and laser blasts can all slow down your opponents considerably.
The game features six different single player racing modes including straight race, elimination, points leader, and more. There are nine different racing cups to shoot for, with each one including five or six races that vary the different modes. The single player campaign is nice and lengthy, and you can upgrade your car’s abilities and weapons as you go. The game also includes online multiplayer action with the same hectic idea of trying to get in any way possible.
Each race presents a unique challenge because there are multiple 3D environments with so much detail in each one. The game is based on any energy meter which is used up for your weapons, and nitro, but there are all kinds of energy pick-ups along the way. There’s some subtle strategy in balancing your energy supplies because it’s so essential to success. The environments also include forking pathways with different energy allotments on each forked pathway.
Cracking Sands ($4.99, Universal) is a well designed kart racer with plenty of action from the small car racing to the use of weapons and energy. The main drawback is that it doesn’t feel all that different than the many other kart racers in the App Store. After a couple of races, it’s tough to tell this one apart, so there’s a definite repetitive feeling especially without any features to truly stand out.
Cracking Sands is worth considering, depending on how many iOS kart racers you have already played.