Game Reviews

Gangstar: West Coast Hustle

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Gangstar: West Coast Hustle

[This review is taken from a two-part feature published in July, which rounded up nine of Gameloft’s iPhone to Android game conversions. You can read part 1 here, and part 2 here.]

Gameloft’s creditable attempt at an urban open world crime sim, Gangstar: West Coast Hustle, was worthy of a Silver Award when we reviewed it on iPhone last year. It remains a compelling – if slightly compromised - experience on Android.

The game sees you running and gunning through a large open city, stealing cars, scrapping with rival gangs, and generally being an antisocial blighter.

Upon booting up the Android version, initial signs are positive. The game loads up much faster on our Nexus One. On a visual level the deep, over-saturated colours witnessed in other Gameloft conversions, such as Dungeon Hunter, seem to sit a lot better with the gaudy, sun-drenched atmosphere of downtown L.A.

However, the game suffers with poorly optimised controls and mediocre technical performance. Both are most noticeable when driving around the city at full pelt, with the controls set to manual. The steering feels wooden and the throttle is occasionally unresponsive, while the framerate coughs and splutters all over the place.

We also encountered an odd bug that repeatedly saw characters seeming to slip over onto their backsides during story scenes.

There’s nothing else like Gangstar: West Coast Hustle on Android, and the fact that you’re essentially getting the exact same game as on the iPhone is reason enough for celebration. However, there’s no denying that the game isn’t entirely comfortable running on non-Apple hardware.

Gangstar: West Coast Hustle

An ambitious open world action game that struggles a little on Android hardware, Gangstar: West Coast Hustle remains a fun experience despite the technical issues