Subway Surfers is a very popular endless running game in the mold of Sonic Dash. As hinted at in the title, you must navigate the subway and avoid all manner of obstacles such as trains, tunnels and a security guard. If you are struggling to attain a high score to be proud of, then read this handy guide to get the most out of your game.
How to play
Subway Surfers – like most games in the genre – are simple to play, but it takes time and practice to fully master. As an endless runner, the aim is traverse the subway for as long as possible before being caught by the officer chasing you. There are three lanes to run in, with trains – both stationary and moving – bollards, tunnels and posts all needing to be dodged on your run.
The controls involve simple swiping motions. Swipe up and your character will jump. Swipe down and he will roll. Swipe either left or right and he will move to the side you indicated. The gameplay mechanics are all very simple, which is a necessity for a game like Subway Surfers.
When it comes to power-ups, there are two different varieties. The first are five upgradable power-ups (minus one exception), which are constant presences when playing the game. They are: 2X Multiplier, Coin Magnet, Jetpack, Power Jumper, and Super Sneakers. Read on to see how we list them in order of preference:
2X Multiplier – As the name implies, the 2X Multiplier doubles your score for a limited period of time. This is a great power-up to grab to give your score a quick boost of points.
Jetpack – The jetpack takes you airborne and out of harm’s way for a period of time, whilst you also have a stream of coins to collect as you hurtle forwards. When you are going at full speed, picking up all of the coins can be difficult at first, although you will eventually become accustomed to being able to get most of them.
Coin Magnet – The coin magnet collects every coin that is visible. Whenever you get on a stretch that has three rows of coins, you will be picking up a lot of coinage for your collection. The added bonus is that coins not only increase your overall score, but they are, of course, Subway Surfers currency, which means you can also spend what you collect in the shop.
Super Sneakers – While all of the previously mentioned power-ups are a great help in assisting you on your run from the law, the Super Sneakers can prove to be an indifferent choice for some players. The Sneakers can be good for leaping over oncoming trains, but they can also leave you in trouble when you need to link up jumps in quick succession. Due to the jumps being much higher and, as a result, you are airborne for longer, judging distances is more difficult.
Power Jumper – This is one of the few ‘regular’ power-ups that cannot be upgraded. The Power Jumper allows you to jump high up into the air and collect the coins that are available (12 per row). Like the Super Sneakers, the Power Jumper can be a hindrance. Not only can you accidentally leap up and crash into a wall or roof, but predicting where you will land after the jump can also be difficult. And in the end, it just really isn’t all that useful.
The second variety are ones that need to be purchased/awarded beforehand (in most cases), and either used at the beginning of a game or at some point during a playthrough. These are Hoverboard, Key, Mega Headstart and Score Booster. Below they are listed from best to worst, including a short description of their uses:
Key – The keys are the only option for when you need a lifeline after being caught by the law. They are a precious commodity, so only use them when it is necessary (like when you’re about to beat your high score!). In a single run, the more times you need a lifeline from the keys, the more keys you have to use each time. For example, if you are caught first time, you use one key. When you are caught the second time, you have to give up two keys to continue. Again, this is something to keep in consideration. Keys can be picked up on rare occasions during runs, while you may also win some in prizes.
Hoverboard – The hoverboards are something you will probably forget that you have at your disposal most of the time. But if you’ve got a hard mission to do or are closing in on your high score, then they can be a great thing to use. Anytime during a run, you can activate a hoverboard and, should you crash, it will ensure that your run isn’t halted and you can continue going on. Each hoverboard lasts for 30 seconds, but if you collect up a decent total of them then you can use one after the other for added protection.
Score Booster – As you complete missions and build up your score multiplier, using the Score Booster is not really necessary to start with. That is, however, until you max out your score to 30x. When that is done, you can add the Score Booster for an additional 5x to take it to 35x. Finding Score Boosters can be difficult, but they can also be purchased for 3,000 coins.
Mega Headstart – The Mega Headstart moves you 1,000m forward from the start of your game. However, we consider it a pretty useless power-up in all honesty. All it is doing is making you avoid the easiest portion of any run, while it also makes you miss all the coins available during that portion. Unless you can’t stand the mundane pacing at the start of a game of Subway Surfers, we’d recommend you avoid the Mega Headstart.
If you are aiming for a big high score (and who isn’t?), you need to complete the missions. These missions, given in sets of three, vary in terms of what you need to do, but very rarely do they pose any sort of trouble. For every set of missions you complete, the score multiplier increases by one (until it reaches 30x).
As previously mentioned, the missions are not difficult. However, some may take plenty of time to complete, so purchasing a ‘skip mission’ pack in the shop might be best in that situation in the long run. A couple of later missions can also prove to be harder than others, but nothing that is too taxing for the ardent Subway Surfers player.
The shop in Subway Surfers allows you to buy items with both in-game coins and in-app purchases. We would strongly recommend not spending any real money on the items available, as you will be able to do so with the games coin currency with time.
The shop allows you to buy power-ups, upgrade your power-ups and, as mentioned previously, gives you the ability to skip missions. Unless you need to by power-ups for a mission, then there is no need to do so really – you will eventually acquire everything available in the shop after doing a few runs.
Upgrading power-ups, however, is certainly something you should consider. First time upgrades are fairly inexpensive at 500 coins, although the more upgrades you get for an individual power-up, the more it’ll cost you each time thereafter. The most expensive upgrade, for example, is 60,000 coins! So make sure you invest your coins wisely, which means avoid upgrading those Super Sneakers…
The Daily Challenge is, like the aforementioned missions, a set of tasks, but these are ones that you have to complete within the day (hence the name!). The tasks set are never too demanding, and the prizes rewarded for completing the ‘Challenge’ are generally underwhelming. It is always fun to have some more targets to aim for during a run, though.
Tips and tricks
Make sure you try and stay in the middle lane as much as you can. This is important when you get the sections that involve two trains coming towards you at once; being in the middle lane means you can react quick enough to see what lanes both are in, and then avoid them!
If you are building up a big score, but your nerves are getting the better of you and things are becoming a little dicey, then don’t forget your hoverboards! They act as a great reassurance, especially if you have many of them at your disposal. It is very easy to forget that you actually have them to use, though!
When you are airborne, if you swipe downwards your character will hurtle to the ground much faster than normal. This is a great tip to keep in mind when the game is at its fastest speed, and you are hopping from one moving train to the next in the same lane. It is also worth remembering if you pick up the Super Sneakers and need to get to the ground quick after jumping.