Riding a motorbike is tricky enough, but introduce ramps, loop-the-loops, parked cars, trucks and immovable concrete blocks and you’ve got the basis for a suicidal sport. Trials riding is also unbelievably physical, which isn’t something we’re particularly keen on here at Life of Android, so we were especially pleased when we came across Trial Xtreme on Android Market.
The aim is simple: get your bike (and its rider) to the end of each level in the quickest time and advance onwards and upwards. There are two sets of levels – one set in a leafy, woodland utopia, the other in a grimy urban nightmare. Choose your poison and you’re away. Sadly there are no customisation options – you don’t get to choose your bike, you don’t even get to change the colour of your rider’s gear. Nope, you’re just plonked straight into the action.
Accelerating away is easy: there’s a forward on-screen button to accelerate and a backward one to brake. However, you’ll need to keep your bike and rider moving in the air if you’re going to land all the jumps and negotiate obstacles without crashing horribly. To do this you can either use your phone’s accelerometer and tilt your handset to shift your rider’s weight on the bike, or go fully digital and use another two on-screen keys, this time up/down. Although it’s always a novelty tilting your phone backwards and forwards to control a game, there are two drawbacks, one universal and one specific to this game: a) you look like a gibbering idiot if you do this in public (that’s the universal one) and b) it’s just easier in Trial Xtreme to use the on-screen keys. With tilt control, there’s always a grey area in between where you want the bike to be and where you’re able to put it using the accelerometer. Use the keys. Trust us.
Graphically TX is never going to set the world alight, but it’s perfectly serviceable and more importantly it’s got that one-more-go factor that so many Android games lack, Even on your 36th attempt at the same jump on level 10, you’re somehow compelled to hit the replay button.
Trial Xtreme isn’t perfect but it is addictive and will keep you coming back. Whether the pull of improving your scores on each level will be enough to bring you back once you’ve completed all 60 levels is doubtful, but by that time we dare say you’ll have got the lion’s share of your £1.99′s worth out of it.
The Bottom Line
Entertaining and addictive. We’d like to see the ability to customise bike and rider but 60 levels should keep us going for a while…
Version reviewed 1.8
Requires Android 2.1 or higher