Apparently, the Birdman Rally is a competition where you build yourself a homemade, human powered aircraft and then jump off jetty into the river or ocean in order to see who makes it the furthest. Oh and in case you think that this is a rather far fetched idea for a game, the Birdman Rally is actually a real-life contest as well.
Fortunately I do not think that participants of the real thing have to deal with hazards like swarms of seagulls, water mines and submarines like in this game. While Birdman Rally (the Android game) looks like your typical Flash game and chances are you have played something similar before, it still remains rather entertaining.
You get to build your plane from a rather limited selection of parts in categories like the prow, wings, tail and chassis. You can also bolt on some accessories like skies that will give you an extra bounce when you hit the water, lasers that will assist with shooting down those annoying seagulls and a rocket, which can deliver a helpful boost. All of these cost money however, and while you can earn your cash the hard way, by playing the game, those who are impatient can simply shell out some real-world funds for the in-game currency. As I said, this is not required to enjoy the game however. There are a few ads that pop up while you are on the launch platform, but once you are sailing through the air they will not intrude which is good.
Unlike in real-life where even the most elaborate contraptions rarely get further than jumping distance from the pier, your plane in the game is actually capable of reaching great distances. This is mostly thanks to the aid of some balloons that are scattered about the levels. Touch one of these with your plane and they will pop, giving you a boost. Later levels even feature some blue whales that will provide you with a lift. Early one your biggest challenge will be reaching the required distance for the next level with your meagre selection of accessories. Once you have more cash and unlocked everything, it is the seagulls that will be the biggest thorn in your side. These come at you in droves later on and require you to tap the screen in order to dispose of them. The laser upgrade helps a lot, but nine times out of ten, my failure was thanks to a seagull collision. In fact, with the right upgrades you will barely see the ground so the submarines, sea mines and other obstacles are barely a factor.
Visually the game looks like your average Flash title so don’t expect anything too fancy. There are some nice touches like the UFO that is visible when you reach great heights and the animations are quite humorous. You will get tired of seeing the same background over and over however. There is a limited selection of costumes available for your pilot as well, but after playing just a few games, you will have seen everything that is on offer. The same can be said for the audio, which is very unremarkable.
Birdman Rally is a fun little game to waste a few minutes on but as I have said, the chances are good that you have played something similar (and more than likely better) before. It is fun while it lasts but once you reach a certain point it is unlikely that you will keep coming back to this game.
*Review originally published in 2012.