Any boy who was a kid in the early ‘80s has a hard wired predilection for mine carts. And you know the reason why if you had seen Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom in the theater when it came out. Years later we’re still chasing that Thugee railway. Does Rail Rush give us the fix we've yearned for since we were kids, or does it fall off the rails completely?
Rail Rush is an endless runner game that looks like a mine cart chase. The game play is just like Temple Run or Agent Dash. Swipe left or right to stay on the track, tilt to dodge obstacles or collect money (gold nuggets or jewels in this case), swipe up to jump or swipe down to duck. Only instead of running, you’re sitting in a mine cart (with a khaki shirt and hat that looks an awful lot like Indy's outfit of choice).
That’s all fine if it’s a great endless runner game, but it’s only okay. It’s not terrible, but not memorable either. The most striking criticism about Rail Rush is how slow it feels. Perhaps a slow ride is helpful to novice players. God knows I’ve had some epic fails on Agent Dash and Temple Run, but even I don’t want to be spoon fed. The cart speeds up the longer you ride, but the game never feels like the rush it promises.
I also take issue with jumping a mine cart. If you’re riding along a straight track, you can’t just lift the cart into the air. Ducking and tilting is fine, but jumping over a barricade is lame. If your guy jumped out of the cart and landed back in it, then we’re talking. Don’t even get me started on jumping from track to track. There should be railroad switches.
The graphics are pretty, with different colored lighting in different sections of the mine. You can collect enough gold or jewels, or purchase them in-game, to buy power ups for your cart or unlock other (less Indy-looking) characters. You can also buy speed boosts and even rams or spikes to protect you from obstacles on the track. The speed boost is only temporary -- five to 10 seconds -- so it’s not that big of a bonus.
I didn’t hate Rail Rush. It’s fine and I’m better at it than something like Agent Dash. It just feels like a copy of a copy so there’s no reason to play it when I have the better versions. While I love the idea of riding in a mine cart, I think I'll stick to getting those thrills from watching Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom.
App Store Link: Rail Rush for iPhone | By Miniclip.com | Price: $0.99 | Version: 1.0 | 34.2 MB | Rating 4+