A freemium-style game that allows for the purchase of additional power-ups, Mill's Bike Life revolves around dodging cops and collecting coins while racing dirt bikes and ATVs through Philadelphia-inspired streets. The result ultimately is a sort of Philly-themed Temple Run or Subway Surfers, with Meek Mill and his crew as the stars.
Developed jointly by Mills' DreamChasers and IM3 Gaming, Bike Life features characters like Monster Energy rider Chino, DreamChasers rapper Omelly, and two different versions of Meek Mill. Unfortunately, though, you only start off with Chino and Omelly, so folks looking to tear up the streets as Mill may have to play for a while before they get to do so.
The game itself is highly addictive, thanks primarily to its "endless riding" format, which continuously throws randomly placed obstacles your way. And for Philly residents or natives, obstacles like SEPTA buses and PPD cop cars ought to provide a little extra connection. That, and the repetition of Mill's "Flexin' on 'Em" instrumental — the only soundtrack to the game.
The landscape is similarly Philly, alternately resembling the Girard Point Bridge and Center City. However, the game sometimes seems to resemble a major West Coast city mixed with Philly charm, but with buses that have actual SEPTA route numbers and logos, Bike Life's Philly cred remains intact.
Players are able to nab power-ups like 24-karat gold headphones, Puma sneakers, and ATVs for various effects. Some attract gold coins, some increase your speed, and some freeze time for a short period. But all are required to actually advance in the game, whether it's in Bike Life's "Mission" or "Challenge" mode.
Just as Bike Life is addictive, it is also incredible difficult to play. Things do start off slow, but quickly become almost unmanageable — unless, of course, you really dig in a play intently with two hands. No one-handed casual gaming will work here after a certain point, which maybe is a good thing depending on how often you play mobile games.
Ultimately, though, Bike Life's difficulty level seems to exist in order to encourage in-game purchases of coins and gems to advance the game. After all, upgrades like different bikes and characters — or just costumes and paint jobs — are astronomically expensive compared to how many coins players collect in the average run.
To unlock Meek Mill, for example, you'll have to earn some 150,000 gold coins. That, or you can shell out $18.99 for the requisite amount. Ultimately, that could add up to quite a few pricey additions — especially considering small stuff like chains and clothing run players several thousand coins a pop.
And additions there will be. According to AllHipHop, IM3 plans to add in other characters and landscapes in future updates, tentatively on a two-month recurring schedule. So while it's a Philly-based game for now, Bike Life ultimately will branch out to include "more cities that represent the riding culture and areas that Mill has visited."