Smash Bandits Review

By , on September 2, 2013
Last modified 9 years, 5 months ago

Smash Bandits Racing
Download on the AppStore
3 out of 5


  • Very intuitive driving controls which don't block the screen. 
  • The slow motion smashes are entertaining.


  • The worst aspects of freemium design are present here. 
  • Only short sound clips of the music tracks.


Smash Bandits can be fun in small bursts, but is hampered by all the more cynical hallmarks of freemium design.

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As anyone who has played with building blocks as a child knows, fun to smash things, almost as much fun as it is to build them. Smash Bandits understands this, and takes the player on a destruction fuelled rampage around the streets of a crime-infested city, eluding the cops, and creating as much property damage as possible

A game of Smash Bandits lasts on average, a couple of minutes - at least in the early stages. Causing damage generates cash, while completing one of the in-game missions allows you to level-up, aquire poker chips, and learn abilities. As this is a freemium game, these abilities cost money to use. This means you have to decide whether to blow your funds on buffs, save up for a car upgrade or a new vehicle. There's also a restriction which affects how often you can lower your wanted level. It's important to stay on top of this, as reaching level five will put you in prison.

The control system, which involves dragging your finger in an arc behind your vehicle, is pretty ingenious. The slow motion that kicks in when you bust through a police barricade is also a nice touch. The moments when you switch between land and sea are pretty exciting, too. It's evident that the free to play design is hamstringing the experience however, limiting your play time by throwing you in jail every five runs, and forcing you to buy your way out.

If it was a premium high -core game which cost a buck or two, Smash Bandits might be worth a purchase. The concept and controls are well realised, but everything else from the power-ups to the police aggression exbraces some of the nastier aspects of the freemium model. If it was balanced a little better, it would be easier to recommend. As it is, this is one collision you may want to avoid.


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