Now that football season is over, it’s time to think about basketball, the upcoming March Madness, and all that good stuff. And to help get your mind dribbling, here comes a new iOS game featuring popular NBA stars (reviewed on iPad here). But they’re not playing basketball, oh no. They’re saving the world from invading aliens in this 3-D endless runner game! Yup, it’s as weird as it sounds!
The game plays similarly to other popular endless runners such as Temple Run. You’ll guide your pro NBA player down city streets, swiping left and right to switch lanes to avoid obstacles. Swipe up to make them jump over small roadblocks, and swipe down to make them slide under others. Collect as many coins as you can to spend at the shop later to buy upgrades and power-ups, and even draft new players. Every once in a while a power-up will appear. Nab it and you can do things like make coins attract to you like a magnet, use a shield to take an extra hit, and even soar into space to collect bonus coins.
You’ll have to watch out for aliens as you run along, too. Some are just on the ground and you can jump and stomp them. Hopping on ground aliens is also handy for reaching higher areas. But some aliens fly along in UFOs and drop bombs along the way. But if you can pick up the “Dunk” icon, you can tap the flying saucer and the NBA player will slam dunk the UFO, defeating the alien in the process. Beat aliens to fill up a special meter. When it’s full, double tap to switch players. I don’t know if there are any differences in each player, but when you do switch this way, the next player will automatically come equipped with a power-up, so that’s cool. While NBA Rush doesn’t really do anything groundbreaking, it’s still a decent little endless runner despite the ridiculous premise.
Violence is minimal and cartoony. You can stomp on and throw basketballs at aliens, and they just explode when defeated. If you run into an obstacle, your player just smacks into it and gets grabbed by a giant robot hand. Reading skill is helpful for the instructions, but easy to figure out how to play with a little help. Younger players might get frustrated at the higher levels of increasing difficulty, though. But if they like basketball, they can enjoy this game without having to know all the rules of the sport.