Back in November, we took an early look at SummitX Snowboarding [99¢] from Com2uS and Free Range Games. Since then, the game's been released, so now the rest of us can hit the virtual slopes for $99¢. After investing some time into the final release of the game I've reached the same conclusion as our preview: - I like what see.

There's six different mountains to conquer, including 36 different multiple-branching down-hill runs. The first slope is 'Glacier' which has six runs and you can unlock the other peaks - like Mt. Payne and Angel Peak - by winning medal points (3 points for gold, 2 for silver or 1 point for bronze). You can choose which valley to enter and each route contains different gates, with blue for time bonuses and red for a score multiplier, so it's worth exploring.

After choosing to be male or female, you start with $1000 and can earn money in the game, which is handy for buying tricks, such as the ability to tilt the device for air-control. There's a decent assortment of tricks available, such as flips, rolls and tail grabs. Doing tricks earns time bonuses and points as you fly down the mountain towards the finish.

When you leave the ground, six new buttons conveniently appear on-screen for performing tricks.  You can press one button for a simple trick, two buttons for a trickier trick or hold and slide your finger to extend the move, for the trickiest of tricks. Two landing buttons appear when you're about to hit the snow and these can be pressed to level-out the board for a safe landing, or to stop a spin, roll or flip.  These trick buttons only appear when needed and then disappear to keep the screen uncluttered, so you have a clear view of the terrain.

The main navigational controls are rather unusual. A two-thumbed split steering-wheel is used to turn left or right. For example, to turn left sharply:  The left thumb moves down, while the right right thumb moves up simultaneously like using a virtual steering wheel of sorts. This control scheme wasn't immediately intuitive to me, however, I persevered and after five minutes I was carving the snow quite happily. So, potentially be prepared for a little practice time at the start.

Some highlights of the game include finding massive jumps on the side of the course or jumping off a cliff, onto a small snow-coated plateau, then immediately off a ramp for some big air. There's also caves and a deep rocky ravine to jump across, with a turning landing required on the other side. These "hell yeah" moments really add to the experience and make this game a lot of fun.

You can spend your game money on a variety of snowboards, for improved performance. There's six decks, ranging from the entry-level "basix" up to the "pro board". Each board has different attributes for air-time, air-control, acrobatics, speed and toughness. Plus, there's over 20 skins to buy: Perhaps you want a zombie ape on your deck, a tiger shark or a stylish green cyclops.

Your runs are scored based on tricks performed and time taken. SummitX connects to the Com2uS gameHub, but pleasingly, it also supports Game Center for leader-boards and 15 achievements and games are automatically saved to iCloud. The music is great, featuring over 20 licensed rock soundtracks, which play in a slow-motion effect when you're aerial. Alternatively, you can pump your own iTunes playlist. There are in-app purchases (IAP) available, to unlock features, however so far it hasn't felt intrusive or necessary which is good as Com2uS have been criticized for heavy-handed IAP in the past.

SummitX Snowboarding only has one game mode and I haven't seen any other boarders to race, however, this is a cool looking and sounding snowboarding game, with peaks, runs, boards, skins and tricks to unlock, plus a variety of routes down each run, which ensures there's plenty of replay value. Unfortunately, after downloading their update v1.01 and installing it on both devices, I lost my medal points and progress, which has dented my otherwise positive impression. If you're downloading the game for the first time, this obviously won't be an issue for you.

  • Chris Lewis

    Non-intrusive IAP!Don't agree with that when the game charges $500+ for each item in game, but only rewards with a max of $50 for each run.
    To get the best trick (barrel roll) is $2300, so if you buy nothing at the start of the game, it still takes 26 perfect runs before you can buy it (or if you spend some money on boards at the start, its 46), and that's 1 trick...think of all the other boards and other tricks you miss out on because the game wants you to buy IAP or grind for hours and hours and hours

  • Chris Lewis

    Non-intrusive IAP!Don't agree with that when the game charges $500+ for each item in game, but only rewards with a max of $50 for each run.
    To get the best trick (barrel roll) is $2300, so if you buy nothing at the start of the game, it still takes 26 perfect runs before you can buy it (or if you spend some money on boards at the start, its 46), and that's 1 trick...think of all the other boards and other tricks you miss out on because the game wants you to buy IAP or grind for hours and hours and hours

  • Anonymous

    Not bad for 0.99, I wouldn't be happy paying 4.99 for it though unless a new control scheme is added, the current one takes some getting used to. Also, if your fingers go up to much it will stop moving in that direction which is stupid since there's nothing else on the screen to touch while steering. My only other complaint would be the IAP of currency, without it you're going to do a lot of unnecessary grinding.

  • http://twitter.com/VULTR3 Mike

    1080 Snowboarding on the N64 had more realistic snowboarding than this piece.

  • http://twitter.com/Georg7e Georg7e

    Great video trailers! I'm impressed, but I like the real thing. Wanting to get the new Burton Vapor at http://snowboardsskis.com/burton/    Has anyone tried out this board?

  • http://twitter.com/Com2uS Com2uS

    Just wanted to add that multiplayer is coming in early February and I checked with my team: the game save is probably tied to your iCloud. The only saving/progress issues noted so far with updating has to do with different devices and iCloud. Hope that helps!

    • Anonymous

      Right.  Game saving and progress work with only one device.  I have two iPhones, and was really surprised when, even though I had logged into Com2Us's "Hub", it did nothing to transfer any of my progress or purchases to the new iPhone.  I lost everything, and have to start over from the very beginning again.  I would warn people .. do not be fooled by what Com2Us is touting as a "Hub" or a "Cloud".  It will not work between two different devices.  This is fine for one device, but it will NOT save or backup any of your information between separate devices (I had bought a new iPhone 4S, and was shocked to have seen .. even after connecting to Com2Us's "Hub" or "Cloud" that it says that it has, that I had lost all of my purchases and achievements when I transferred to this new device.  I have to start all the way at the beginning again.  This will be both expensive (because of the purchases that I will need to re-make) and time consuming (because of the effort I will need to reach where I had previously been before).  In short .. DO NOT BE FOOLED BY THE LIE THAT COM2US CLAIMS WILL BACKUP YOUR INFORMATION AND MAKE IT AVAILABLE ACROSS ALL OF YOUR DEVICES.  THIS IS A LIE, AND IT WILL NOT WORK.  YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED FROM SOMEONE THAT HAS EXPERIENCED THIS.

  • http://twitter.com/davidvidalb David Vidal

    graphics don't look that great to me, scenario and moves look cool but not worth the 4.99

  • http://twitter.com/extol4000 Rick

    Finally....an iOS snowboarding game done right! This game captures the essence & fun of Cool Boarders for the PS1 in the most positive way. I like the controls of this game because it feels like you're actually steering. The graphic are really good. The prices for the tricks are pretty steep or the currency earned per run is pretty low; take your pick. The replay value is still high though.

    Thanks Com2uS. Keep up the good work!

    -Rick

  • Anonymous

    I am not a gamer, and only just got a droid phone, but was really surprised with how enjoyable this game is.  I am not even a fan of snowboarding, and bought the game for the bands on the soundtrack. 
    That all being said, I am enjoying unlocking more courses, and slowly......yeah....painfully slowly.....leveling up more tricks and boards. 
    I did buy the 4.99 version and do not regret it.

SummitX Snowboarding HD Reviewed by Troy Woodfield on . Rating: 4