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Mad Skills BMX review: Mad Skills BMX

A swipe and hold to the left or right while in the air performs a flip. Flips are a great way to get a little extra boost, because they give you 4 seconds of fast-pedaling adrenaline. For each of these moves, it's hard to master the timing to get the most speed out of every track, so expect a difficult learning curve in the beginning. Actually, expect a difficult learning curve the further you go -- this game is not easy.

Mad Skills BMX comes with 40 tracks across novice, intermediate, expert, and pro skill levels, each with their own 10-track pack. When you complete a track, you can continue on to the next even if you didn't win, but you won't be able to move on to the next skill level track pack without completing the previous pack. Like Mad Skills Motocross, this game quickly gets very difficult, so you'll have to master your moves to progress to the harder levels. I should note that for this reason, not everybody will enjoy this game, mainly because the frustration level can be quite high. But if you're up for a challenge and don't mind repeating levels to get a perfect race, you'll love this game.

Mad Skills BMX
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Once you master the swipe-down-and-hold move, you'll speed down hills. Screenshot by Jason Parker/CNET

Unlike Mad Skills Motocross, this game has a multiplayer component. You can sign in through Facebook, then challenge your Facebook friends who own the game to a head-to-head match. In my early testing, nobody yet owned the game, so I'll have to update this review when I get a chance to challenge my friends.

The game also offers a few extras to round it out. You get some options for your character design, with complete makeovers and color schemes that really change up the look. You have the option to buy a few character designs through in-app purchase too, but the game comes with five variations so it's pretty easy to skip paying for more. The original game, Mad Skills Motocross, later received several updates for both free and paid map packs that only added to the fun and Turborilla promises the same treatment for this game. Like I said, the original was one of my favorite games a couple of years ago, for the action as well as the frequent updates, and this BMX version promises to be another great racing experience.

With tons of tracks, moves to master, beautiful graphics, and pinpoint racing timing, Mad Skills BMX is a great addition to any racing game fan's iPhone app library. If you like 2D racing games and real challenge, I can't recommend this game more.

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