Developer: BRAVO GAMES, S.L.
Price: free Download on the App Store
Touch Racing Nitro is a great racing game, though it takes some getting used to thanks to the unique controls. Instead of the virtual directional pad popular in most iPhone games you lead a race car on a virtual leash controlled by your finger.
The control system is a break from the many racing games that have the user steer the car by tilting the iPhone as if it is a steering wheel. Because the controls take a bit of getting used to, it is highly recommended that you play through the Touch Racing Nitro tutorial to get a feel for them (even the app's home page includes the phrase "Warning! Extremely challenging" in the title).
During gameplay the race car follows your finger around the track. The race car will be sped up or slowed down based on how far your finger is from the car. Making turns or sudden speed shifts in Touch Racing Nitro can particularly take some getting used to.
Once you have the hang of things, Touch Racing Nitro is a pretty good experience. There are several different models of cars and tracks that can be unlocked by compiling victories.
Probably the trickiest piece of finger work when driving is the use of the Nitro boosts. At the bottom right of the screen are several icons that, once tapped, shoot a burst of nitro into your car. This speeds you along the track at a much faster rate. The trick here is doing this while also maintaining one finger on the screen to steer the car. Accomplishing this can be quite the feat. Even with lots of practice, it still is an awkward move.
Touch Racing Nitro is connected to the OpenFeint gaming network, which is available on several App Store games. OpenFeint is currently the king of social gaming on the iPhone, so if you're an Xbox Live or PlayStation Network junkie this will feel right at home.
The good graphics and responsive gameplay make Touch Racing Nitro an intriguing option for racing fans. If the tricky controls don't present a barrier, this may be another good way to kill time gaming with an iPhone.