Rollercoaster Rush games for iPhone

puts you in the shoes of a roller coaster brakeman trying to balance your need for speed with a mandate to keep your passengers from careening off the track. The game is a fun way to the pass the time on the iPhone or iPod touch, but its sequel, , takes the fun to another dimension.

The roller coaster games, both developed by , don't give you any input in the design of the tracks. Here, your only concern is velocity--making sure you're going fast enough to thrill your passengers, but not so fast that you hurl them into the stratosphere. Once you successfully complete one rollercoaster, you move on to the next--there are 70 tracks to get through in and 40 in the . (Both the and also have their own free versions, which limit you to the first 10 tracks from each game.)

As you coast your way from one track to another, the game starts becoming increasingly difficult. Stepping on the gas and never applying the break may work for the first few levels. But soon, you'll find you have to be more cautious about how fast you go and which jumps you power through.

Still, riding the brake is no alternative: you score points for spectacular stunts and excited riders. Reach a hyper-speed level, for example, or make a particularly impressive long jump, and the crowd shouts its approval, gaining you more stars. (You can win three stars on a single ride in 3D Rollercoaster Rush and five stars in the original version.)

3D Rollercoaster Rush offers a bonus. You can race the best time of the game's creator for every track that you successfully finish; beating it gets you a bonus star. If you've already earned three stars on the track to begin with, though, the race mode is usually pretty tame. There's also a single bonus track in each version of the game that is apparently the best time of the CEO of the company; it isn't very difficult to beat, either.

Both Rollercoaster Rush games are based on a really simple concept. As a result, the learning curve is pretty much non-existent; once you launch either game, you can jump right in, without having to worry about studying the instructions. You'll be at ease by the time you finish the first track.