The closest I've ever come to riding a bike is hopping on some girl's scooter during my college days, so anything that's death defying or even daring will never be on my bucket list. Max Awesome enables players to channel their inner daredevil, as they flip their bike over ramps that even the late Evel Knievel couldn't imagine doing. Somewhere in the air, as you are making your jump, you may experience a split second of gaming exhilaration, and it's that slight rush which makes Max almost as awesome as his name.

With 60 courses as your playground, Max Awesome has enough terrain to keep wheelie loving players satisfied. If the game saw simply to collect a bunch of gold coins and jump over or duck your way through obstacles, it could easily fill up 10-15 minutes of your time. As with most of Chillingo's titles, the game play is absolutely addicting, and since there are several challenges for you to face within each course, progressing to the next level isn't such a breeze. To unlock new levels, Max must beat out time trials, collect a number of objects without dying, or perform enough stunts to boost his overall score. There are enough goals to reach within each course to keep your attention, and since it's a completely fun experience, spending over an hour riding on that bike is not out of the question. Just make sure you don't crash and turn into an angel.

Whenever you complete an objective, you will receive Max Awesome points, which are used as spending money at the store. Purchasing different helmets, outfits, bikes, or even cashing out to learn new bike moves adds a welcome variety to the proceedings, and although buying these items will help you shave your overall race time or boost your score, I'm more interested in dressing Max up in a pizza outfit. My first big purchase was his green pizza threads, a pizza bike, and a black helmet. Mixed in with the green hills across the water, my daredevil matches with the scenery.

Controlling the game is easy as pie, as the left side of your device contains buttons used for doing front and back flips as well as performing your jumps. To accelerate as well as slow things down, simply tap the buttons on the lower right side of your device. Although navigating your bike will take a matter of seconds to pick up, it's navigating the course that is the steepest challenge. Jumping over a ramp might give you a thrill the first several times, but unless you have a true handle over your vehicle, grabbing that pretty little green and red target may take several attempts.

I was expecting a lot less from Max Awesome, and maybe that narrow minded attitude rests on my ambivalence towards motorcycles. But somewhere between sticking the perfect front flip landing and buying Max a new bike, I started to enjoy the ride, even if I've crashed enough ways to last 50 lifetimes.


App Store Link: Max Awesome for iPhone & iPad | By Chillingo | Price: $0.99 | Version: 1.0| 44 MB | Rating 4+
7.5 out of 10 arcade sushi rating