Trials Frontier

Trials Frontier

The Prof and Brian have been prospecting for Gold, Silver and Bronze in the new, old west. This week's Cost of a Coffee comes courtesy of Trials Frontier.

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The Prof and Brian have been prospecting for Gold, Silver and Bronze in the new, old west.  This week’s Cost of a Coffee comes courtesy of Trials Frontier on iOS and Android.

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“Hello, I’m Professor Kelvin Harris, the resident scientist for Codec Moments.  Everyday in the United Kingdom, we spend two and a half million pounds on coffee.  Like many people, I would happily spend a few quid on a vanilla chai latte and this week I have; see, I’m sipping its spicy goodness now.”

“Can I have my babyccino now Professor?”

“Here you go Brian.  Brian here is my lab assistant; I use the term “assistant” loosely, as the university human resources department didn’t think lab hindrance was a suitable job title, even if it is wildly accurate.  Together we’re on a mission to find games that you might consider foregoing your usual caffeinated beverage for.”

“But Professor, how can you have your vanilla chai latte and my babyccino and an exciting mobile game?  That’s three things all at once, it’s impossible.”

“I hear you Brian and I have three words for you:  Free-to-play.  This week’s ‘Cost of a Coffee’ game is Trials Frontier from RedLynx, a Ubisoft Studio, which is available now on iOS and Android.  Trials Frontier is a mobile game that’s set in the same universe as the recent release Trials Fusion; many years after the events of Trials Fusion, Frontier pits you, an unknown rider, against the protagonist Butch and his gang in a dystopian future where you have to help rebuild a wild west frontier town.  The cartoon stylings are new to the series, but the trademark social one upmanship against your friends and most importantly, the game mechanics are still present.   The physics based fun of jumping, flipping and bunnyhopping your bike is present, just like the other games in the Trials series; Redlynx have done a great job of translating the controls to a touchscreen, although on rare occasions the accelerator would stop responding.”

Trials Frontier

“A bit like a Toyota, eh Professor?  You know there’s an all-electric competitor to that Prius, produced right here in the UK… ”

“…Don’t start banging on about the Nissan Leaf again Brian, we’ve already had complaints about the Sunderland-centric bias of this podcast.  There are a variety of mission types, including stunt challenges, medal challenges and head-to-head races.  Like Trials Fusion, the game has a sharp difficulty spike as you progress and are suddenly required to get gold on later levels and beat faster opponents; to counter this you can upgrade your bike and unlock new bikes by collecting parts and blueprint pieces through spinning a prize wheel at the end of each level.  This is where the pay wall quickly becomes apparent and there are three commodities in the game, Fuel, coins and Gems.  You earn fuel slowly over time and use it when you race.  Coins are won by passing checkpoints, with bonuses awarded for passing consecutive points without falling on your face and you use them to pay for the upgrades.  Gems are earned (rarely) via the prize wheel or are purchased and allow you to re-spin the prize wheel and speed up upgrades.”

“Why would you want to re-spin the prize wheel Professor, that seems rather decadent?”

“Well I agree Brian, but certain missions require you to obtain specific items again from the prize wheel.  You are faced with the choice of either playing the mission repeatedly and quickly depleting your fuel, or using gems.  Bike upgrades become vital quickly too, as you face faster and more fierce opponents.  Sadly these upgrades quickly become a grind, taking an exorbitant amount of coins, parts and time; your income from missions doesn’t increase alongside the hyper-inflation associated with upgrades, and waiting 2 days for a small improvement in your handle bars is a drag.”

“So is it worth the cost of… erm, nothing Professor… it is free.”

“Yes it is Brian, but I would go so far as to say that this is one of those free games that benefits from you spending the ‘Cost of a Coffee’ on it, if you want to progress in a timely manner, that isn’t measured in ‘ages’.  The actual gameplay is great though and physics is just what you’d expect from a Trials game.  So if you fancy some Motorcross on the move, I strongly urge you to give this a try!”

“Cost of a Coffee is a production of Codec Moments.  For more information go to or e-mail the Professor at  You can also tweet us @CodecMoments or find us on Facebook and Google+ if you know what those things are.”

“See you next time.”

The Verdict


The Good: Fast and furious physics based fun that translates the Trials world onto your phone nicely!

The Bad: Upgrading your bike quickly becomes a drag if you don’t pay to play.

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