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Fans of Gameloft's arcade racer have been waiting a long time for Asphalt 8. In fact, it's been over a year since Asphalt 7 hit iOS and we've been keeping tabs on its sequel as throughout its development. While delays have kept Asphalt 8 from its original release month of July, we recently had an opportunity to check out a final version of the game and it's sure looking like it'll be worth the wait.

Firing up Asphalt 8 for the first time it's obvious that Gameloft has gone the extra mile in terms of presentation. Everything from the slick tutorial to the menus to the HUD looks great. Actually, the whole game looks amazing, with loads of visual effects, beautiful models and tracks and an overall quality that I think easily rivals Real Racing 3.

Speaking of EA's racer, it looks like Gameloft won't be going the way of the freemium with Asphalt 8. A quick glance shows no timers or repair costs. In fact, all you'll see is a load of cars to buy, a ton of career missions, and an impressive amount of tracks to race them on. I also caught a glimpse of a full-on multiplayer mode complete with ranking, but I wasn't able to check it out.

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After playing with the assortment of cars and upgrades, getting into a race was a blast. The pace is fast and frenetic and the arcade feel permeates the entire race. Nitro, various kinds of ramps, tricks, oncoming traffic and the ability to cause awesome wrecks  all work to create a racing game that certainly requires skill, but also rewards creativity. Most importantly, I just had blast playing each race, as all the game's elements work together to create a fun, fast paced experience that is rarely encountered in iOS racers.

If this has piqued your interest, I've got some good news: Asphalt 8 is slated to be released next week. While it's obvious that racing fans will be picking this up, I gotta say this is looking to be my personal game of the week when it hits.

  • Boris Nguetie

    Hope it ridiculously outsales RR3!!

    • Amenbrother

      I agree, I hope they make a good amount off of this since they aren't crippling us gamers with timers and freemium rubbish. I still cant believe Real Racing 3 and what they did, terrible way to get nickel and dimed.

      • http://ask.fm/MidianGTX MidianGTX

        The fact we even have to have this conversation makes me sad. If this were a console game, nobody would be comparing it to RR3, they'd be using the ol' "Arcade and Sim are different games" trope and comparing it to NFS and Burnout instead. When it comes to the App Store though... gameplay takes a backseat to money issues. Games are judged on a scale of how much they rip you off and annoy you rather than what kind of entertainment they provide.

      • Arthur

        I think it could be argued that how much they rip you off or annoy you greatly affects how much entertainment you get from the game. I don't think you hear about it anywhere but the App Store at the moment because for the most part the App Store is the biggest environment for this type of practice, where on a console you generally only have to pay for dlc (which is still better than IAP if the IAP is just a money sink timer pay wall).

    • Rip73

      Lets just give up this ridiculous RR3 "debate".
      Its stale and tired at this stage and irrelevant to A8.

      A8 is neither freemium, simulator nor riddled with ubtrusive iap. They function as cheats/unlocks for the impatient only and it can all be earned by simply playing and enjoying (which you will).

      Think what you will of RR3 and rage against it all you want. Or just delete it if you don't like it and move on. There's no need to have to comment on it every time anything releases. The obsession people seem to have with it is beyond ridiculous.

  • Smokey956

    :O

  • Joltrabbit

    My getting A8 depends on the installed file size

    • Rip73

      1.4gb installed file size.

    • Boris Nguetie

      Really??!

  • ank34

    It's still $1, right?

    • Rip73

      Yep

    • http://www.gameloft.com/ Ryan

      it's 1 cent better, $0.99 (:

  • worldcitizen1919

    I'm looking to Asphalt to put a nail in the coffin of Real Racing 3 and its abominable timers etc. if they play their cards very right and are not stupid Gameloft can all but empty RR3's race tracks and have almost everyone migrate to Asphalt. I'm waiting withnterest having deleted RR3 ages ago never to allow its disgusting freemium model to tarnish my ipad. Will Asphalt face the same fate?

    • Amenbrother

      Agreed!

  • Taclys

    Real Racing 3 is a very different game then this one. RR3 is a realistic, strategic, and supposed to be what the name implies: real racing. Asphalt is an arcade racer, with boost and smashing and airborne and insane speeds. They're marketed to slightly different audiences. I never liked RR3, I like arcade style racers like Asphalt. My brother wouldn't get into this game, he prefers realism much more.

    That being said, I hope this game absolutely wrecks RR3.

  • Kirs

    What makes you think it will outsell RR3 when its Gameloft, who'd most likely use the same business model as RR3 or even slightly worse? LoL....

    • marc0313

      Are you kidding? When Gameloft actually uses a decent pay model they have THE BEST games, just look at their Top Series: Asphalt, NOVA, Modern Combat, Order & Chaos...

  • Diaboliq

    I'll buy $5 worth of A8 games just to see RR3 burn!

  • http://marxistem.smackjeeves.com/ Marxhog

    It will supported also for iPod touch 4, ... right?

  • famousringo

    The gameplay vids I've seen look amazingly fun, and now I find out it's a premium game? First day buy at whatever price.

  • themostunclean

    People celebrating over it being a "premium" title should hold off on the champaign. If the rumors are correct, it's only .99¢ which I still consider to be in the freemium wheelhouse.

    If they're not charging $6 for it like they have in the past, you know they'll be getting that money somehow. Maybe not through timers and repairs but there will most likely be a ton of IAP it really is only .99¢

    • Pray For Death

      Yeah but we already know it doesn't have energy bars and maintenance BS

    • Guest

      People that have read reviews can celebrate.
      Everybody whose played it has said the iap is unobtrusive and only for the severely impatient to unlock the next series very early or top up cash that is already easily earned by simply playing.
      Even the previous version demonstrated that which still launched at 99c, not €6 as you stated, but was still extremely easy to earn everything in game.
      There is zero problem with iap in this one either.

      And its not a rumour that its going to be 99c, its a fact confirmed by numerous Gameloft statements on their blogs, Facebook, twitter and even a community manager in this comments page up above.

      Forget about all this freemium "wheelhouse" and just be thankful a dev is giving us something as spectacular at such a low price with extremely well balanced iap that allows you to enjoy the game as one normally would but give the impatient player what they want as well.

      All games should be like this

      • themostunclean

        I'm still very wary of .99¢ games. The freemium "stink" can still be pervasive.

        I can't imagine a game as complete as the last Asphalt at 1/8 the price, there has to be a system in place to recoup the difference in earnings or exceed it.

        Personal accounts aside, I'll wait until I see it for myself to believe its truly a "premium" experience. Gameloft isn't known for implementing IAP very well but another company (Popcap) did well with PVZ2 so I'll try and be optimistic. It'll be hard though, been burned pretty bad by Gloft in the past.

      • themostunclean

        And I was thinking of Asphalt 6 with the pricing. 7 was good but I find it hard to see how anyone could get everything in that game without spending a cent.

    • marc0313

      Well, they'll get their money for the amount of people who buy it.

  • Lukas

    java too? wow.

  • Lamar Taylor

    Real Racing 3 is a fun game but the timers and IAP requirements taint the game slightly. I plan on supporting this title just because I can actually download it and play instead of paying money to skip waiting on upgrades and repairs.

  • the 17 beast

    I was never really into the asphalt series but once I saw this one , it really got me excited to buy on launch day.

  • Bryno

    The game should be released on aug 22