A currency in the Asphalt series is a virtual in-game unit that
- can be obtained by performing specific actions (like finishing races) and
- can be spent for specific virtual items, for instance cars, upgrades or boosters.
Over the time, a broad variety of currencies has been introduced. They often have two different icons, one for displaying a price or balance (small, often simplified icon) and one for displaying a reward (big icon).
Every game has a basic currency which is Credits in most of the current games. Asphalt 7: Heat used Dollars instead, reintroduced in Asphalt Overdrive as Bills and in Asphalt Street Storm Racing as Cash.
Basic currencies are mostly earned by finishing races and completing certain subgoals.
Since the introduction of Tokens as a premium currency in Asphalt 8: Airborne, this concept has been taken over to Asphalt Nitro, Asphalt 9: Legends and Asphalt Xtreme. Asphalt Streetstorm has Diamonds instead. The main characteristics of a premium currency are that it is much more valuable than the basic currency, more difficult to obtain through in-game actions and more often connected with in-app purchases.
Again first implemented in Asphalt 8, random currencies mark the introduction of simulated gambling to the Asphalt games. They are usually named Cards and are essential for upgrading and obtaining vehicles. Cards are generally not perceived as a currency at first glance because they come disguised as "Pro Kits" or "Blueprints", suggesting they are part of an upgrading or building process. In reality, Cards are spent and exchanged for virtual items like every other currency. The difficulty is that they can only be obtained through random processes so that players often need a large number of trials until they finally get a needed card.
With the 2019 Holiday Update, Asphalt 8 introduced Fusion Coins which are both a random and a premium currency:
- As they can only be obtained by selling a random currency (Cards), they become a random currency as well.
- As the process of selling cards for Fusion Coins is extremely lossy and as upgrading vehicles requires huge amounts of Fusion Coins, they are de facto a premium currency.
Besides, there are also many level indicators. These are not currencies in the strict sense as they are not exchanged for virtual items but stay in the possession of the players, indicating a certain level they have reached. Surpassing certain thresholds, however, enables players to obtain rewards or unlock features.