It’s no secret that I’m a huge fan of the PAKO series from Tree Men Games. The original PAKO – Car Chase Simulator ($1.99) launched quietly back in the summer of 2014 and had you driving a vehicle with the pedal permanently to the metal and no ability to brake. You simply steered left or right avoiding obstacles and trying to outrun an increasingly hostile police pursuit for as long as you possibly could. MANY updates over the years added in new levels, new vehicles, and new features making the original PAKO a full-featured high score chaser.
Then in January of this year Tree Men Games released PAKO 2 ($1.99) which retained the core idea of the original but added a ton of depth by making it all about picking up your criminal buddies and delivering them to safety as a getaway driver. Your passengers have the ability to fire back at the police and you can actually take damage in this game and keep going. PAKO 2 was similar enough that it felt like PAKO but different enough that it didn’t render the first game obsolete, meaning that I now had TWO amazing car chase simulator games to have fun with.
As of today though I now have three with the launch of PAKO Forever (Free). You could kind of describe it as the original PAKO but on party shuffle mode, as it features randomly generated levels each time you play and a number of crazy power-ups and special features spread throughout the game. It’s like a jukebox of vehicular chaos. Check out the trailer.
PAKO Forever has a couple of other neat things going for it. For one, you can play the game in either portrait or landscape modes, and it’ll switch on the fly. The previous games are both landscape oriented, and it never occurred to me that it’s the type of game that would work well in portrait mode, but it totally does. The left half of the screen turns your vehicle left and the right half turns it right, and you can actually just slide your thumb between the two and it almost feels like you’re controlling the game with a virtual analog stick. You double-tap to enable power-ups so PAKO Forever really does play perfectly fine as a one-handed game.
Another thing I like is how you unlock the TONS of different vehicles in the game. Each one requires you performing a specific task, like surviving for a certain amount of time or causing a certain number of wrecks. This effectively makes the vehicle roster an achievement/goal checklist that rewards you with vehicles and adds a neat sense of progression to the game. Also, as in previous PAKO games, the vehicles handle quite differently from one another making it a wildly different experience depending on which one you choose.
Finally, PAKO Forever is free to download. There is a tiny banner ad at the bottom of the screen when your run ends, and you can disable those ads for a $1.99 IAP if they bother you. There MIGHT be interstitial ads after a certain number of runs too, but I bought that ad unlock so darn fast I couldn’t tell you for sure. The main thing is that this is a super fun twist on the PAKO formula that’s totally free to try and offers up a different enough experience that it complements the first two games nicely. There’s no reason not to give it a download and then head into our forums to let others know what you think.