Van’s SK8 Pool Service vs. SK8 Half Pipe Review Throw Down (iPhone)

Posted by Christophor Rick (TheSuperGuido), Apr 10, 2009 11:15

Who’s the king of sidewalk surfing on the iPhone? Today I take Van’s SK8 Pool Service (Van’s) from Fuel games and thrash it up against SK8 Half Pipe (SK8HP) from iCompany. The games are very different in many respects but the one thing they have in common is that you need to get big air and pull off tricks for score. We’re going to go three rounds and see who pulls out the sickest run to be crowned King of the Skater Apps. Let’s hit it!

Round 1 - Graphics

Graphics on both games is fairly lacking. Van’s takes a closer look at the skater which is a shame because of the shoddy models. The skater looks like a blocky lifeless crash dummy on the board for the most part. The scenery isn’t all that spectacular either since you’re pretty much looking down into the bowl of an empty swimming pool. In fact there’s only one pool so it’s just the same deal over and over. Meanwhile Half Pipe has you obviously skating half pipes. The location of the pipes changes as denoted by the surroundings but overall it’s not all that impressive. Your skater is so small as to be almost unrecognizable as a skater at all. When you choose your character in the beginning you get to choose from a guy or a Betty, only the Betty is locked. Meanwhile in Van’s you get to choose between Bucky Lasek or Omar Hassan, both of who are equally blocky on the board.

Speaking of the board, Van’s also gave you the ability to customize yours while SK8HP did not. In fact there was pretty much nothing customizable, but your character is so small, you never would have noticed anyway. Not that it does much in Van’s since all you only see the bottom of the board  while you’re doing tricks in the air.

SK8HP has the feel of a skater game while Van’s feels like it was slapped together to promote their product. There’s no discernible style in the game from an artistic standpoint while HP really looks like the skating scene and includes real company logos splashed freely about the game.

Without a doubt SK8 Half Pipe pulls off some monster air and a sick trick set to take the lead and win round 1.

SK8 Half Pipe 1 - Van’s 0

Round 2 - Sound

SK8HP went with a complete soundtrack supplied by Slightly stoopid (songlist unavailable) while Van’s went with a soundtrack supplied by GoBig! Entertainment and features the following tracks:

  • Pre-mature midlife crisis - Methadones
  • B Girls - Penuckle
  • Smoke Cigarettes - Slowride
  • Panther 4 - Slowride
  • Throw that World Away - Dwarves

Van’s also has some limited voice work by the two skaters. Generally, when you click on one of them it plays while the game loads. Unfortunately, many of them get cut off by the game switching to the loading screen. Not very good game design in my mind. Skating sounds? In all honesty I should simply skip over this, just like Van’s did. SK8HP did include skating sounds however they’re less than perfect. The skating sounds continue when you’re in the air, they don’t always play when you’re in the half pipe and are generally drowned out by the music. Overall, a poor performance on both sides from the sound effects and a good job with the music. The judges are split down the middle on this one and we have to head to round three.

SK8 Half Pipe 2 - Van’s 1

For more video game reviews on this and many others head to Game Rankings

Our Rating for Van’s SK8 Pool Service vs. SK8 Half Pipe Review Throw Down (iPhone)
6.0 Overall
Both games bail on major points but do some other things fairly well. Considering the price you might think them worth the purchase...and you might not.

Rating: 0.0, votes: 0

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