I'm not sure what surprised me more about today's surprise Philippines soft launch release of Asphalt 9: Legends - the fact that there have been nine mainline Asphalt games, or that the veteran racing series still looks this good. While the racing franchise didn't make its iOS debut until Asphalt 4, each successive iteration has normally gone some distance to providing a meticulous, fast-paced and flashy graphical showcase for the device, and hot off the heels of Feral's excellent GRID Autosport [$9.99], Gameloft are back to try and reclaim their throne. Fans of the previous entry in the series may know what to expect from this upcoming sequel, but Asphalt 9 looks like it's throwing even more content, configurable options and crazily fast racing action into the mixer, and the first trailer for the game shows how stunning it looks in motion. While no worldwide release date has been specified as of yet, today's Philippines soft launch is a perfect chance to try out Gameloft's next generation of mobile racing game.

Beyond the aesthetic wonders, the most interesting feature for me in Asphalt 9 is the new 'Touch Drive' control system. This input method promises to 'streamline steering to let players focus on the fun of racing', which could be a huge benefit in terms of accessibility for gamers. Of course, there are questions over how this will be balanced online, and to what degree Gameloft have taken control from the cockpit, but it's nice to have an additional steering method beyond the traditional touch and tilt inputs. Over fifty cars - featuring major manufacturers like Ferrari, Lamborghini and Porsche - seventy detailed tracks and promises of a fully-fledged career mode also underline Asphalt 9's commitment to content. However, a free-to-play monetisation model and a constant network connection make me sceptical, no matter how polished and detailed the racing appears to be.

Despite the occasional major release, the big-budget driving genre has been understandably under-represented on the App Store of late, and it's really down to games like Asphalt 9 to prove there is still a space for such titles on today's iOS ecosystem. The soft launch version of Asphalt 9: Legends is available to download on the Philippines App Store today - with no concrete worldwide release date as of yet, use our soft launch guide to test-drive the game early, and let us know what you think of title on our forum thread.

  • Prit Attal

    Can any1 help it's region locked!

    • Jason

      Soft launch...patience.

    • Mitchel Previlma

      It's only available in the Phillipines for now

  • Mr. Mayhem

    “Console quality” LOL

    • Raphael Alexander

      Yes, looks as close to a console game as racing games can be right now.

      • http://www.dLifeHD.com dLifeHD

        Do you think this looks better than GRID? Can't wait to play this, I love arcade racers. I wish Gameloft was that "Pay Once and Play" company they were before...I hate to see a game this nice looking be freemium.

      • Raphael Alexander

        I'd say it looks flashier than GRID, GRID looks more realistic and doesn't have the flashy effects.
        I wish they would at least make the campaign fair and not a grindfest, they could do whatever with the multiplayer.

      • Silver812

        Freemium and P2W, don’t forget the second one 😉

      • Silver812

        Looking as close as possible to a console game doesn’t make this game a console game. It doesn’t even gets close to a console game graphics.
        And by the way, there are more things in a game apart from graphics, like controls or mechanics, which in this game suck imo.

      • Cianomerano

        yeah guess what? IT's not a console your device. moron

    • http://www.dLifeHD.com dLifeHD

      Why you hating bro? lol.

    • err404

      I would say that it is very comparable to what the Switch is putting out.

  • Saeed khani

    Looks like asphalt 8 with another update, GRID is better

    • Raphael Alexander

      GRID is not an arcade racing game, and this game looks better than Asphalt 8 graphically.

    • Silver812

      Actually asphalt 8 has better traction control or better controls overall lmao

  • Thomas Zink

    Never been a fan of this series. It’s no where near the quality of GRID Autosport.

    • http://erikveland.com ErikVeland

      Completely different beasts my dude.

  • Jason

    Love these games. Best balance between arcade and sim, obviously leaning towards arcade.
    Don't like the always online issue though.

    • Silver812

      Maybe you played asphalt 8 and got confused, this one is 100% arcade. No simulation in this game believe me.

  • DeInit

    I don't care for Grid. I got it, it's a Real Racing game, or a game with more of a sim accent. I prefer arcades, but the Asphalt series has always had one huge fault, and it was frame rate. Never went for over 30fps. Then they released that ugly iteration where you basically chose a lane to race on, and that is what I fear when I read "streamlined steering", if I wanted something that reduced an actual racing game into one of those preposterous drag racers that make no sense to me I'd have gone to the originals. Really, I'm ok with jumps and absurd tracks, but don't "streamline" that much, we'd like to play an actual game here.

    • Silver812

      You can change the controls to the one that used to be in Asphalt 8, so no drag race anymore for you.
      It’s controls in that mode are very far from what asphalt 8 achieved though.

  • sickbigbrother

    I‘d be excited for this if it were a premium game. Asphalt 8 was a complete grindy cashgrab. I rather payed the 11 bucks for GRID and have all content forever instead of only being able to get the best cars if I shell out 100 dollars ...

    And yeah, I‘m aware Asphalt is arcade racing while GRID is a simulation with main focus on realism. I just can‘t stand freemium and I’m sure a lot of people would dig a premium arcade racing game on iOS but as long as that isn‘t going to happen GRID is all we’ve got ...

    • http://www.dLifeHD.com dLifeHD

      Yeah, I miss the days when Gameloft was making premium titles like NOVA and Castle of Magic (loved this game).

      • Silver812

        Yeah but they get more money from this type of game, so I don’t think they will change in the near future.

      • http://www.dLifeHD.com dLifeHD

        I understand that. It’s sad what mobile gaming has become because people aren’t willing to spend a few bucks for an app...oh well at least we have the Switch now right?

  • http://erikveland.com ErikVeland

    I got back into playing Asphalt 8 on the weekend after almost a year off. It’s still incredibly fun to race and it still looks great. But holy heck what a bewildering mess of events, loot boxes, currencies, cards and upgrades it has become.

    I hope 9 resets a bit of this kitchen sink f2p mess it currently is.

    • Silver812

      Asphalt 9 is even worse in that department 😭

  • villaeko

    Gameloft buat game pesawat tempur untuk android sejenis ace combat atau sky gambler dong

    • r10k


  • Prit Attal

    Yep, got it yesterday and already completed 4% in career mode!

  • AngeloBlake25 (Michael75)

    Nice game

  • Amir Khairi

    come join club : The Legends

  • https://techvirgins.com Fawad khan

    Cery nice game, i have fully motivated to see the demo video, can i download this amazing game in android by google play store ?

    • Silver812

      Not for now


    what about windows release?