Let's pretend this isn't called Re-Volt 2: Multiplayer for a minute. Let's call it "Multiplayer Revolt." Or Jim.

Now the thing about Jim is that he doesn't have to worry about comparisons to previous Re-Volts. No snap judgements based on fond memories. He's just a game that can be assessed without anyone pouting, "but he's not old Jim."

So how did he do? Jim was alright. I had fun, there were a few late nights, and when it was all over Jim had satisfied me.

I probably should have gone with a different name.

The unfortunate reality though is that there IS a two emblazoned upon the advertising posters. Re-Volt 2: Multiplayer is a game that, whilst entertaining, doesn't jump start your adrenaline levels like the original did.

Adrenaline crush

What it does do, however, is allow you to play in real-time against friends and other players around the world – a feature that last year's Re-Volt 2 sadly lacked.

The general premise is that you drive a little RC car around 264 stages, whizzing through maps set in supermarkets, suburban neighbourhoods and ghost towns.

You accelerate automatically and poke two arrows to steer. It's neat in its simplicity, but by allowing a computer to take over all those petrol head "vroom vroom" acceleration urges, the gameplay feels somewhat anaesthetised.

With all the cars racing at pretty much equal speeds, it dampens the sense that you're actually going fast at all. Throw some fairly tepid graphics on top, and your heart won't exactly be pumping as you jostle for lead position on the game's many straights.

Still, there are some nice little extras that boost Re-Volt 2: Multiplayer's character. Power ups that would not be out of place in a Mario Kart game allow you to play dirty, and inject some much needed tactics that the auto-acceleration strips.

Moving obstacles like bouncing beach balls and sliding automatic doors throw in some satisfying tension, while features like skid marks as you round a particularly tight corner are particularly fun.

The multiplayer itself also, for the most part, works well. It certainly makes a big difference to play against a living and breathing opponent. And in a Revolt 2: Multiplayer lobby you can test your mettle against three of them.

Not that re-volutionary

You'll sometimes struggle to find four players at once, but once a lobby is locked in the race normally runs smoothly. A global Grand Prix mode and daily missions also prevent gameplay from becoming stale by rewarding you with special achievements.

The real thorn in the side of Re-Volt 2: Multiplayer, however, are the in-app purchases. First up, a new energy system depletes each race you run. Drain your "battery" completely and you have to wait for it to recharge or fork out for extra cells.

Next are coins and crystals, which pay for upgrades to your cars. These are gained through completing races, but if you have the cash to splash you can level up quickly.

It means that to be competitive in Re-Volt 2: Multiplayer you can either pay up or spend a lot of time grinding in single-player mode to boost your stats.

So while die-hard fans of the original game are bound to be entertained through their rose-coloured spectacles, newbies to the franchise (the proverbial "Jims") will likely be nonplussed.