Crazy Snowboard Has Potential, Yet Rough Edges

Crazy Snowboard 2.0 is an app with multiple personalities. On the one hand it is one of the better designed games around for the iPhone or iPod touch — probably due to the reworking the developer recently did. However, its weakness is monotonous game play that keeps it from being a truly great offering.

The aim of Crazy Snowboard is to show your mad snowboard skills by performing tricks on a snow-covered course. The more aerial fireworks you do, the more challenges you can unlock for additional game play. Also, more snowboarders and snowboards become available for a more customized experience.

Should you wish to get a quick tutorial on how to play, the game offers an excellent description of the game’s options along with photos of action. Despite the fact that there are multiple controls, it is very easy to pick up how to play because of the information page. Another great feature is that you can save up to three different game profiles with their progress. Saving and recalling previously saved games is easy and has a familiar interface to those who have played console games.

Unfortunately, it is the game play itself that is Crazy Snowboard’s biggest weakness. A major flaw is in how the visuals work with performing tricks. For example, the primary way you earn points is through jumping off the ramps and doing aerial tricks. The problem is once you do this the screen angle changes to facing the front of the snowboarder. This makes it difficult to gauge where you are in relation to the ground; in turn landing is an exercise in guesswork. And crash landing means losing points. The more challenging the trick, the more difficult it is to land. The visuals are great — but it severely hampers the gameplay.

The game could also use some better integration of competition. The rounds tend to become a bit monotonous since it is only a series of downhill courses with an increased demand on point accumulation. More diversified courses along with some racing would mix the game up.

It is unfortunate because Crazy Snowboard is put together quite well. My favorite moment was being able to unlock a pumpkin-headed snowboarder. With a few tweaks to gameplay Crazy Snowboard could be a truly outstanding game.

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