Asphalt 8: Airborne is a 2013 racing video game, developed by Game loft Barcelona and published by Game loft as part of the Asphalt series. It was released on August 22, 2013 for iOS and Android, November 13 for Windows 8.1 and Windows Phone 8, January 15, 2014 for BlackBerry 10, and April 5, 2015 for Tizen. Asphalt 8: Airborne marks the return of the crazy arcade racer in this even more spectacular new version. Included are a new game engine, cars and environments, a complex career mode, multiplayer and slow-mo races worthy of action films. You’re going to love it!
- 180+ OFFICIAL SPEED MACHINES: Ferrari, Ducati, Lamborghini, McLaren, Bugatti, Mercedes, Audi, Ford, Chevrolet… From bikes to cars, we got ‘them all.
- STUNNING GRAPHICS: Interactions between the vehicles, environments & tracks are a fully physics-based experience!
- ARCADE GAMEPLAY AT ITS FINEST: Feel the thrill of gravity-defying racing across 40+ high-speed tracks!
- THE ULTIMATE MULTIPLAYER RACING EXPERIENCE: Race in real-time multiplayer action for up to 12 opponents & dare your friends to ghost races!
- WIN BIG: Participate in our Limited-Time Events to stack up amazing & exclusive rewards!
- MASSIVE CONTENT DEPTH: 400+ career events, 1,500 car mastery challenges, 5 unique game modes. An endless stream of single-player content!
- CUSTOMIZE & UPGRADE YOUR RIDES: With over 2,300 decals, take down your opponents with style!
Besides the use of stunt jumps as a central gameplay mechanic, Asphalt 8also makes extensive use of simulated HDR rendering and pixel shaders, as seen on the sky and specular reflections on the road surface. There were forty-seven licensed cars available initially, but due to game updates, there are 208 cars and ten motorcycles in total as of February 2018. The cars are divided into five classes, and their performance is now determined by the new Rank rating feature. The player starts with one car in the lowest class (Class D), the Dodge Dart GT (Starting Rank 505; Max Rank 778; Max Pro Rank 802).
47 cars over 9 circuits
In this 8th installment of the Asphalt series, Gameloft has gone above and beyond by updating 80% of the fleet with brand new cars. Asphalt 8: Airborne’s fancier models aren’t available at the start, but you can unlock them as you win circuits and earn points (or shell out cash if you can’t wait that long). The vehicles are, on the whole, very well designed and true to the originals. You can collect up to 47 in total and repaint them in various colors.
Asphalt 8 offers a good range of game modes. First and foremost of these is a complex career mode that lasts eight race seasons across 180 events. Next is a quick race mode with six solo race types (classic, elimination, duel, ejection, infection, and slalom). And, finally, there’s a multiplayer mode for you to play with up to eight players online, though the highlight of this is still playing with local friends over WiFi. A ranking system displays your world ranking and how you compare to your friends.
Asphalt 8: Airborne features nine different locations at the release, as well as nine more locations added through updates. Each location features multiple tracks. These tracks are either new to the series or old tracks which have been reworked and redesigned to satisfy graphical needs. As for the environments, Asphalt 8: Airborne takes you to 9 new destinations that include city locations like Venice, London, Barcelona, Tokyo, and Monaco, as well as more rural settings such as Nevada desert, French Guyana, Iceland, and the Alps. There are hidden shortcuts to be discovered that help you gain on your opponents.
Gameplay is similar to that of Asphalt 7: Heat, with the player given four control options: “Tilt to steer” (auto-acceleration with movement controlled by tilting the device), “Tilt and icons” (manual acceleration via an on-screen icon, with movement controlled by tilting the device), “On-screen controls” (auto-acceleration with movement controlled by an on-screen virtual steering-wheel), “Tap to steer” (auto-acceleration with movement controlled by tapping the side of the screen). The Windows 8.1 and Windows 10 versions feature different control schemes, including the traditional WASD keyboard scheme.
The Asphalt 8: Airborne gameplay retains the arcade style seen in previous installments. You can still use Nitro to boost your speed, drift for miles, collect items that dot the road, etc. The one big change in Asphalt 8: Airborne is the addition of springboards scattered around the tracks. These enable you to take flight and perform spectacular stunts in the air. The Asphalt 8: Airborne courses also climb into the air, hence the name Airborne.
Asphalt 8 is the first game in the series to feature a licensed soundtrack. When playing the game, there are three selectable “stations”; bass, rock, electronic and rap. Some of the songs available are “Be Electric” by The Qemists, “Etude” by Nero, “Rocksteady” by The Bloody Beetroots, “Fire Inside” by Gemini, “Stamina” by Vitalic, “Burn It Down” by AWOLNATION, “Underdog” by Kasabian, “Play For Real” by The Crystal Method (Dirtyphonics Remix), “Professional Griefers” by Deadmau5, “Go with the Flow” by Queens of the Stone Age, “Holdin’ On” by MONSTA (Skrillex ft. Nero Remix), and “Pulsar” by Celldweller. The March 2014 update added four new songs: “Animals” by Martin Garrix, “Over It” by The Crystal Method, “Asleep at the Wheel” by Band of Skulls, and “Cannibal” by Silversun Pickups.
New graphics engine and punchy music
As for the graphics, Asphalt 8: Airborne is as good as before and even better, with detailed universes and lighting effects that are quite impressive. The new physics engine shows what it can do when slowing down for collisions with competitors, and when debris is swirling on the screen. All we need is music that can keep up with the fast pace of the races in Asphalt 8: Airborne. Say no more: there are three styles of music, each more catchy than the last to make you want to smash everything on the road.
A game that keeps the Asphalt tradition alive
Overall, Asphalt 8: Airborne has changed very little from the previous game, with the same philosophy and gameplay as before. This leaves the only real changes being the environments and cars, more spectacular slow motion, and springboards located around the circuit. Fans of Asphalt and arcade racing games won’t be disappointed by Asphalt 8: Airborne, which is still one of the finest racing games in the mobile and tablet category, along with Real Racing 3. Asphalt 8: Airborne guarantees hours of fun while you take part in many solo or multiplayer competitions!
Asphalt 8: Airborne (iOS|Android) is the latest sequel in Game loft’s super popular arcade racing franchise, but this one has a new element that lets you get big air to perform tricks. The new jumping mechanic is fairly well executed and adds to the excitement, but it becomes old hat pretty quickly. It’s important to note that arcade racers like this one differ from simulations like the Real Racing franchise, so don’t expect real-world physics and controls. This type of racer is meant to be much more fast-paced and entertaining than the sims, so racing purists might want to look elsewhere. With that said, Asphalt 8 is still a lot of fun.
Even with these issues, Asphalt 8: Airborne is the best arcade racing game I’ve played in a while and the best so far in the franchise. With tons of cool cars to unlock, tracks with several shortcuts and alternate routes, and high-speed, flipping-through-the-air, nitro-boosted racing action, this game is great for a quick adrenaline rush
Smooth and challenging multiplayer modes
If you want to try your luck against other real racers, you can race with friends over local Wi-Fi, or race live against other players online. I tried both, and the racing was very smooth without any hiccups in my testing. In local multiplayer mode, you’ll be able to choose the game types I discussed above, the track you want to race on, and what class of cars will be allowed to join. In the online version, players vote on game type, track, and class. While I found that playing locally is a bit more fun with friends (or co-workers) yelling at each other as we raced around the track, the online multiplayer provided the biggest challenge with players coming from around the world.