A comedian — whose name eludes me — once asked why, when people were attempting to encourage him to do something dangerously reckless, they did so by reminding him that he had precisely one life to live (i.e.: YOLO). Now — thanks to designer Michael Edwards — you too can experience that thrill of living on the wild side, all from the comfort — and, more importantly, absolute safety — of your iOS device of choice. In Yolo Chase (out now, free), players aim to see just how long they can evade the Popo before they — and all of the drivers around them — receive a sudden and violent departure from this mortal coil.
You control your sports car by hitting the gas via holding the screen’s lower right, activating your nitro by holding the screen’s upper right, hitting the brakes via holding your screen’s lower left, and by activating sharp drifting turns by holding the upper left. You can furthermore steer your sports car by tilting your iDevice to either the left or the right, with how far you tilt your device determining how hard your car turns in the desired direction. Using these controls you’ll rapidly change lines — sometimes drive against the flow of traffic — turbo burst way ahead of Johnny Law, and cause general havoc and mayhem as you force the owners of pathetic Hybrids to get out of your way.
Let me be clear right now that — as far I as can tell — there is absolutely no win conditions to be found with Yolo Chase, which I guess is fair since this ensures that the game is an accurate reminder of precisely why you should never do something like this in real life. That isn’t — however — to say there are no long-term objectives within Yolo Chase for you to pursue, for in this world you really can take all of your earthly possessions with you to the next life. The in-game money bags that you collect are used to trick out your sweet ride’s appearance — covering things like paint job, wheel style, nitro capacity, and more — and even eventually unlock access to additional tracks for your to test your mettle upon.
Furthermore — beyond the aforementioned money bags — there additionally exists shield and nitro refill power-ups for players to grab, the latter of which I assume needs no explanation. You begin each session of Yolo Chase with only a single shield on hand, which has the power to let you ignore precisely one fatal crash (although your car will still become mangled in the process). From what I can tell, virtually any car crash — save for those involving a green Hybrid, which you can apparently hit head on at 200mph and still feel nothing — will immediately strip away one of your vital reserve shield points.
Seeing as how shields are the rarest of the three power-up types to be found within Yolo Chase, players will ideally — if they wish to be succeed — need to avoid collisions at all costs. For those whom are the absolute best at weaving in and out of traffic, they can eventually stockpile a mighty reserve cache containing a whopping three whole crash invulnerability shields. Furthermore — with each shield successfully grabbed — there is additionally a short lived period of free super invulnerability, that even lasts for a period of time proportional to the number of shields already on hand before the pickup occurred.
Using these controls — and power ups — you’ll jump divides, smash your way through puny Hybrids, drift into oncoming traffic, and do whatever else it takes to keep safely one step ahead of the fuzz. This won’t be easy — however — because while the bulk of the normal traffic will rigidly stay their course, up until their horrible demise, the police will dynamically weave about in their attempt to force you off the road (for the greater good). Your best defense against the cops is that they’ll — usually — go out of their way to avoid hitting someone, so you’ll have to drive like a reckless maniac — without killing yourself in the process — in order to avoid them swooping in front of you and then fast-braking.
All of this makes for a racing game that is actually a lot of fun play, even if you otherwise staunchly believe in safe driving and would never do something like this with your actual car. All too soon you’ll find yourself playing round after round of Yolo Chase, all in an attempt to get more cash — especially since everything costs exorbitantly large amounts — and to see if you can last longer than before. Finally, you won’t need to worry about no one believing you when you finally do nail that perfect run since the game has an automatic recording function that lets you post a video of you most recent failed attempt.
Touching back on my recent comment that everything in Yolo Chase requires a lot of money to unlock — coupled with the fact that I previously stated the game is completely free — you might expect there be IAPs here, or at the very least a lot of non stop ads. However — as odd as it might seem — you would actually be wrong for thinking this, for Yolo Chase is currently being offered entirely for free with absolutely no strings attached of any sort. That said — especially with futures updates already promised, such as one guaranteed to contain additional sweet rides to play with — there is still a chance that this might change at some point in the foreseeable future.
Either way — game play matters aside — I am additionally proud to report that Yolo Chase looks just as amazing as it plays, and further more contains an impeccable sense of speed. One of the greatest ways that racing games can fail is when they make you feel as though you’re moving slowly through molasses, even if the speedometer otherwise says you’re currently pushing somewhere over 300mph. Furthermore — beyond being both fast and shiny — you’ll even get drawn out physics based crashes whenever you hit stuff, that can even rapidly spiral wildly out of control in fantastical ways similar to the Burnout series.
iFanzine Verdict: If you ever wondered what driving like a maniac down the highway — avoiding Johnny Law as you charge forward — would be like, then Michael Edwards’ Yolo Chase is a much safer alternative to your questionable dreams. For the more sane amongst you, the game’s tight controls — gripping sense of speed, coupled with physics based crashes — and addictive fun just might win you over all the same. Combine this with the fact that Yolo Chase can be had for absolutely free — with no ads or IAPS attached — and there’s never been a better time to start outrunning the Popo.