Stab Magazine | An Honest Review: Medina’s Surf Game!

And The Winners Of The Vans Triple Crown of Surfing Are... Watch The Pick-Up Episode 5, Presented by Vans, To Find Out


An Honest Review: Medina’s Surf Game!

Shark dodging, floaters, and a surprisingly docile Charlie Medina. 

style // Sep 3, 2018
Words by Stab
Reading Time: 3 minutes

Thursday night we held the Byron Bay Electric Acid premiere, but we weren’t going to punch it 10-hours north on the M1 for one night only. We blew the whole weekend out, and are now prolonging our Saturday and Sunday stopping along the coast trying to sneak into as many spots as possible before we’re met with a week of onshores back home. 

Fortunately for me, Rick drive’s a manual, which I’m incapable of driving. Unfortunately, I work Sundays, and since the internet doesn’t shutdown on weekends and content ain’t gonna post itself.

Then, like a Keanu Asing heat win, the idea sprang to us – the Gabriel Medina surfing game! Not only would it cure monotonous motorway boredom, but it would double as ‘compelling’ online material and an opportunity to write about something absolutely meaningless. 

So here it is.

The Introduction

I downloaded ‘Medina’s Surf Game’ onto my iPhone for a cool $2.99 (a hefty price for which I’ll be seeking full reimbursement from our accounts department).

While paying for an app (or anything) in 2018 will likely send you into an irreconcilable spiral, as unlikely as it may seem, it’s a worthy investment. You’ll blow $300 for a couple of hours fun, so what’s $3 bucks for at least 30 minutes of it?!

Not visible during gameplay: Gabriel’s body hair.

A World Tour, Medina’s Island free-surfing, and the frustratingly impossible obstacle course, all a couple finger-taps away.

The Gameplay

Two fingers, two directions, and a seemingly never-ending tube. Left thumb to turn left and your right to turn right – it’s eons easier than actually going surfing. 

At first it appears eerily similar to Sally Fitz’ surfing game (read the honest review here), but you’re allowed to do more than run over trapped dolphins and whip into unbreaking waves here.    

You start off on a ‘Malibu White’ featuring a half-star rating, despite this, within a couple minutes you’ll be jamming ‘off-the-lips’, doing endless chop hops, getting piped and doing a variety of really shit airs called ‘rasgada’ and ‘frontflip 180s’. If you want to perform anything resemblant of an actual turn or air though, you’ll need a hell of a lot of patience, or be willing to blow out your bank account by purchasing in-game coins.  

The T-Mobile Tube Timer found a new and more suitable home.

That’s right, to get better in Gabby’s surfing game all you need to do is splash some cash!     

Unfortunately there’s no Turps and Pottz berating you over the mic, there is however a soundtrack better suited to a Tournotes episode. In some sense it’s like you’re playing your very own Snaketales episode without a barrage of “yes!” and “fucks” thrown in between each turn  – you can always do that yourself.  

The game however isn’t akin to the good old days of KSPS on the GameBoy Colour, you have to dodge sharks, collect coins, and of course, claim your wave at the end of every ride. You’ll also have Charlie beckoning advice which typically involves the purchase of a new board or power up.

Simply whip out the credit card and rip away.

Speaking of Charlie, he takes a starkly contrasting approach in the game than real life. When I scored as low as a 1.4 at my first world tour heat, he recommended heading over to train on ‘Medina’s Island’, withholding all impulses to aggressively storm the judges tower.  

The World Tour

All the stops you know and love, including the shark-ridden Margaret River, and even the Bells burger which boasts a triple-overhead tube!

There is however no noticeable difference between any of the waves on the CT except a change in direction, and each of them is littered with sharks, seagulls, and of course, gold coins – like every good mobile game requires.

Other than these discrepancies, it’s quite like the real World Tour: frustratingly repetitive, confusing score lines, and Medina claims regardless of whether he’s winning the heat or not. My highest heat score so far was a 4.0 at Bells for getting four tubes and launching innumerable number of airs; that being said, I am yet to unlock the ‘floater’ which is sure to promote my scores to the excellent range.  

Like any true surfer I threw in the towel when it came to Saquarema

It should also be noted that the top surfers consist of mostly non-anglo names – Silvio Vitti, Eduardo Carioca, and even a Fabio Hickman. A feature which is far from discrimination and simply an accurate prediction of what the tour will look like in a couple of year’s time. Let’s face it, us Aussie’s and American’s are all but fucked on the competitive schedule.


A much freer and ‘surf-like’ attempt than Sally Fitz’, but hardly as entertaining as the genre defining surf-games from the early millennium. 

It’s probably better than scrolling during your daily commute, or listening to your significant ramble on about their mundane day, but it’s not sending you into a Candy Crush like addiction anytime soon. 

All around I’m giving it a 8.27/10…

Only because I want Gabriel Medina to unblock us from Instagram.


Comments are a Stab Premium feature. Gotta join to talk shop.

Already a member? Sign In

Want to join? Sign Up


Most Recent

Stab Surfer of the Year: John John Florence, Italo Ferreira, Balaram Stack, Rolo Montes, and Shaun Manners

Day 9: "You can't do better than his year last year." - John John Florence

Jan 28, 2023

Full Moon Surfs, Impassable Puddles, And A Few Nights Spent Sleeping In A WSL Commentary Booth

A reader-submitted collection of nonconformist surf stories.

Jan 27, 2023

Carissa Moore And Finn McGill Are Your 2023 Vans Triple Crown Of Surfing Champions 

They both pocket $50k and tickets to this year’s Vans Pipe Masters.

Jan 27, 2023


The Pick-Up, Presented By Vans, Episode 5

Mason Ho helps us ring in our final week on the North Shore.

Jan 27, 2023

Goofyfoot Brazilian World Champion Stars In Stab’s Biggest Board-Testing Franchise

Can you guess who?

Jan 26, 2023

Surf Community Rallies To Raise Funds For Eddie Winner And On-Duty Hawaiian Lifeguard Luke Shepardson

Because it's the right thing to do, of course.

Jan 26, 2023

Interview: Caity Simmers On Machete Wars, Rihanna, Personal Project Problems, And The Rise Of Female Surf Content. 

A toast to ‘Toasted.’

Jan 25, 2023

Stab Surfer of the Year: Creed McTaggart, Albee Layer, Laura Enever, Dane Guduaskas, and Selema Masekela

Day 8: "65 years young and charging just as hard as ever at Pipe, Backdoor,…

Jan 25, 2023

“I’m Not A Big Wave Guy”

How Kai Paula accidentally made his mark at Jaws three weeks after surfing it for…

Jan 24, 2023

Everyone Went.

A toes in the sand, phone in the lagoon account of the 10th Eddie Aikau…

Jan 24, 2023

Breaking: Another CT Rookie Injured Before First Event

Sophie McCulloch pulls out of Pipeline due to Snapper Rocks snafu.

Jan 23, 2023


Watch: ‘Toasted,’ By Caity Simmers

Your favorite surfer directs, edits, and stars in her first feature film. 

Jan 23, 2023

On-Duty North Shore Lifeguard Luke Shepardson Wins The Eddie Aikau

Local man prevails over 39 big-wave heavyweights at 29ft @ 19 seconds Waimea.

Jan 23, 2023

The Eddie Aikau Invitational Is On

Grab a beverage and enjoy surfing's Super Bowl Sunday

Jan 22, 2023

The Women’s CT Is About To See A Generational Shift 

Only three women have won a Title in the past 15 years. Here's why that's…

Jan 22, 2023


“One For Marcio” – Albee Layer’s Tribute To Mad Dog

Imagine treating 30ft Jaws like Backdoor.

Jan 22, 2023

Stab Surfer of the Year: Noa Deane, Jamie O’Brien, Parker Coffin, Cliff Kapono, and Brendan Buckley

Day 7: "It's like he feels more comfortable when it’s as gnarly as it gets."…

Jan 21, 2023

Five Reasons Why The Eddie Still Matters

With better waves around the world and likely no prize money, why is The Eddie…

Jan 20, 2023