The Ground Effect iPhone app promises “incredible 3D graphic detail”, but gives you a splitting headache instead.

Related story: iPhone Street Fighter IV review

When I read on the App Store that this game could be played in 3D, I snapped it up immediately.

Here’s a line from the typical over-hyped description of the game in the App Store:

Ground Effect is one of most fun, exhilarating, addictive & visually impressive games to arrive at the App Store. Think flying, think driving, think racing, then think again!

Think again, for sure… before you buy this app. There’s a free version and a full version that’ll cost you US$1.99.

I tried playing it in 2D first, because I couldn’t find a pair of those old, red and green 3D glasses. I stole a pair from the How To Train Your Dragon preview I attended in LA recently (had to keep a souvenir, right?), but they were the new grey-coloured type.

Visually impressive? I don't think so.

Visually impressive? Not really.

It wasn’t great. It wasn’t addictive, the graphics were dull, and the TEN vehicles the description promised we could choose from all turned out to be the exact same lame-ass vehicle, but with ten different colour schemes. At best, it’s a below average iPhone racing app.

Then one fine day, when we were going through the mountain of crap we have at our office, our assistant editor (or “ass. ed.”) Melody found a pair of old 3D glasses, and I got my chance to try it out in 3D.

I thought maybe this would change everything. Maybe the vehicle would like jump off the screen and hit me straight in between the eyes and it’ll be the coolest app ever.

Not a chance. It hit me straight in the head, actually. Felt kinda nauseous for pretty much the rest of the day, and I’m the kind that has no trouble at all sitting through a 3D movie.

Screenshot of the game in 3D mode. One effective method of torture would be to force him/her to play this all day long.

Screenshot of the game in 3D mode. One effective method of torture would be to force someone to play this all day long. They'd puke their brains out two hours into it.

With the glasses on, there’s only a slight hint of the illusion of depth in the game, like between the “plane” and the landscape, but nothing much to shout about. 

I let fellow R.AGE blogger Sharm try it, and till today she still thinks I was trying to kill her. Drama queen. She blogged about that near-death expreience on her “Sudden Blog”.

Sharm and her near-death experience.

Sharm and her "near-death experience".

Ground Effect is cool because it kinda opens up new possibilities with the iPhone, but it’s not worth the terrible headache and nausea. This was a terrible attempt at pioneering something.

I’m gonna stick to my Real Racing app. Even the free version (only one car and one race track) is better than this.


Related story: Useless iPhone App – Sonar distance measurer

Related story: Useless iPhone App – MyMirror

Tell us what you think!

Go top