Back in 2010, Blur was released as somewhat a semi-realistic version of Mario Kart and Wipeout, being an arcade racer with power-ups that help get past opponents. It did look and play good, but it didn’t sell well enough to save the UK game studio Bizarre Creations from being shut down. That’s too bad since Blur has since become a cult favorite due to its aesthetic appeal and fun racing gameplay. At least there is still some mileage in the Blur IP as a mobile racing game has come out, featuring known vehicles in arcade racing action with cool powerups, although from a different perspective.
Blur Overdrive by Marmalade Play is basically Blur at a top-down perspective, making it conducive for mobile gaming. If you like racing games on your phone or tablet, then this could be for you as it does look pretty good. This is a free-to-play game that anyone can try out and enjoy, which is an attractive prospect indeed. Of course, mobile games that are free to play usually have some form of monetization option like in-app purchases, and this game is no different. But at least this game isn’t as obnoxious with them as a lot of other games have become. It’s still kind of in your face, but at least not jammed right up your nose.
The gameplay itself is a lot like the original Blur, although you don’t get the usual third-person view. Instead, you have to play it like you would with old school games like the first Grand Theft Auto. If you can’t maintain your bearing on what’s left or right at any given moment, then you may have some trouble with this game. This game also have the element of gas refills, which basically means that you can play only a limited amount of races at a single time before you then need to refill. It’s like one of social game that Zynga is known for, but only less dreary.
Mobile racing gamers will be familiar enough with the controls here, although it’s more on the touchscreen controls instead of tilt controls. The latter would indeed be more awkward for this style of racing game, so players have to make due with an on-screen d-pad that may not work well for players who are not that used to touchscreen controls. As for the buttons that let you use the weapon power-ups, there seems to not be enough space in between to prevent accidental activation of the wrong power-up, which is detrimental in pinch situations.
If there is a real flaw to this game, it’s the lack of variety in gameplay modes to play around with. While every race has a different name and power-up positions, they’re essentially the same kind of game, so it may get old quickly if you’re not completely into the basic racing. It does feel like a grind, winning races in order to earn cash for new cars and upgrades. Of course, if you’re particularly impatient about getting all the best stuff in the game, then that’s where the in-app purchases come in. However, it’s still not a sure shot for winning races even if you have the best car since with the power-ups and such, you can still lose your lead in a race if you’re not on top of your game.
This could be a cult favorite in the mobile racing genre the follows in the spirit of its predecessor, comparable to titles like Asphalt, Real Racing, and so on. If you’re an old schooler who likes classic arcade racing titles like Super Off Road and Rock n’ Roll Racing, then this may be to your liking as well. It’s not exactly the same type of racing game, but it’s still quite good fun. While Bizarre Creations has been long gone, their legacy remains in the Blur franchise and what it could achieve in the future.
Tested in . Final Score: 7/10