Railroads of America: Build, Protect, and Manifest Destiny

 

Price: $1.99
Rating:
Railroads of America
iPad App Review by TheiPhoneAppReview.com

Reviewed by Luke Patrick

Reviewed by Luke Patrick

Here at the iPhone App Review, we like games that comes with a unique twist. In other words, anything that offers up a new concept, an inventive game mechanic, or even just fresh graphics is a friend of ours. This is why we were excited to find Railroads of America on our desk.

The app comes with a refreshing mix of time-management puzzling and action (in defending your creations) that is, if nothing else, worth checking out. For our full review of this train-oriented application, you need only to slide on down below the break! Starting with:

Concept and Gameplay

As stated, the idea behind Railroads of America is certainly a new one, though perhaps only in that it does not directly copy the titles that have come before it. For instance, the central concept of the app is that you’ll need to construct railroads at each station to guide your trains from one point to the next.

This costs money and resources, which you’ll need to mine using workers. You’ll also need to defend your trains, tracks, and mines from enemy attacks—more on that in a second. Combining all of these elements, you get something that’s two parts Railroad Tycoon, and roughly another third RTS, a la Warcraft.

Does it work? Well, in a way, yes! It’s a lot like live-action model train building, if we had to put a genre to it, but then again, we’re not even sure that that works as a descriptor. We’ll put it another way:

The game is fun, inventive and a unique experience, though we did sometimes wish  Railroads of America had picked a clearer direction, and then ran with it, diving deeper into the source material that’s there.

Graphics and Design

Railroads of America for iPad

Railroads of America for iPad

Here’s where things get a bit tricker for Railroads of America. You see, the app just isn’t the best-designed we’ve ever seen. The games layout is easy enough to navigate, however, the graphics themselves are on par with the original Oregon Trail. All this requires, though, is an update with better textures, and you’ve got yourself a much better aesthete.

Now, onto the attack portion of the app. You see, the title has the “Indigenes” attacking your trains, tracks and mines. Now, we understand there’s a cultural divide happening here, but take it from us, devs: This is incredibly racist, inaccurate, and highly offensive. A “classic” part of the Wild West film scene or not, it’s as frowned upon as black face in today’s world, and with good reason. Please reconsider.

Overall Value

At the end of the day, we’re just not sure that Railroads of America is worth the two bucks it is asking for.

On the one hand, the gameplay is great, and with a few minor updates in the graphics department, it could be quite phenomenal. Still, the app has a long way to go, and until that time, it may yet be slightly overpriced for what you’re getting in return.

Railroads of AmericaRailroads of America requires iOS 6.0 or later and is compatible with iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch. A small expedite fee was paid to speed up the publication of this review.

The iPhone app reviews rating: 

“The best iPhone apps and the best iPad apps are reviewed by TheiPhoneAppReview.com

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