It can be quite dangerous to put your indie game out there and then compare it to another, bigger game, but it’s also hard to deny that there are certain genres this lends itself too. Take Pumped BMX as a case in point, it’s clearly a Trials-like game but this comparison does it no favours.
Pumped BMX takes the age-old idea of tasking you with completing courses on a track running from left to right while performing stunts for points. The graphics a more cartoony than Trials or other games in this genre but that works in the game’s favour to help it stand out.
Tricks are performed with the analogue stick while in the air and look impressive. The skill of ‘pumping’, by hitting the A button at just the right minute on a jump, is also needed and is essential to completing the tracks in some cases as it give your bike enough power to get to certain markers. The problem is that the difficulty is ramped up right from the beginning. Even the tutorial doesn’t really help with getting you used to the controls. It’s a case of pixel-perfect landings and timing tricks perfectly before you can move on to the next course.
Those who like a challenge may well end up thrilled by the harsh difficulties of the game, though. While Trials slowly ramps things up, Pumped BMX hits the hard stuff early on and never lets up from there.
Aside from the visuals and difficulty, the game doesn’t really do much else to endear itself to players. There are bike parts to choose from but the basic customisation is only skin deep, there are no online leaderboards and no different modes to play while stuck on another tricky level. That said, it’s good as a challenge and gives you a sense of achievement for finishing a course.