ModNation Racers Road Trip PS Vita Review - www.impulsegamer.com -
ModNation Racers Road Trip
Reviewed by
James Wright
on
ModNation Racers Road Trip PS Vita Review. All in all, it's still a fun experience and definitely the best racer on this console at moment!
Rating:
4.25

Gameplay 8.0
Graphics 7.8
Sound 7.5
Value 8.5
Distributor: Sony
Classification:
G
Review Date:
Mar 2012
Reviewer:
James Wright

8.3


ModNation Racers Road Trip

ModNation Racers was easily one of the most entertaining "kart" racers on the PS3 and the PSP which not only allowed you to race on some whacky gaming environments against kooky characters but you also had a plethora of power-ups at your disposal.

You could even create your own games thanks to the powerful creation tools and needless to say, there were some brilliant player created tracks available. Although a tad fiddly on the PSP, ModNation Racers on the PS Vita is the perfect platform for the creation tools thanks to its large screen and innovative controls, especially when modding or creating new racers, karts of tracks!

With that in mind, the PS Vita has broken up the creation facets into three sections that include Track Studio, Kart Studio and Mod Studio. However the creation stations is definitely for the more seasoned gamer and although it's relatively quite easy to use, it can also be quite complex which allows you to create some amazing mods that can be shared with others.

Newcomers to the series should check out the career mode to learn the ins and outs of the game as you join Tag in order to compete in 5 tours from across the globe with 35 new tracks for the series. Apart from career, you have quick race, time trail and an ad hoc race to challenge other gamers... although not online. It's players in your "vicinity" and disables the internet when you try to use this option.

Needless to say, this is definitely no port from the PS3 or PSP but a brand new game which really adds something to the franchise. Apart from driving against a variety of opponents, your character also needs to engage in a variety of challenges and find tokens that are hidden throughout the tracks. Token can then be used to purchase additional goodies for your game from the Shop Station.

Controlling your racer is done through the main controls of the PS Vita such as the right shoulder button for speed or one of the D-Pad buttons for a power-up. Navigating left and right is done through the analog stick which is flawless. As a single-player racer, the game is very sturdy and quite slick on the PS Vita.

Although I'm a little confused as to why the developers omitted online racing which would have created a great experience with other owners of this game. You can race against other people's ghost times but it's definitely not the same as having them "physically" in your race via the net. You can use the ad hoc option but this unfortunately is only local play.

Navigating all the different creation facets of the game is quite easy as you create new mods (racers), karts or tracks thanks to the OLED touchscreen. The touchscreen is especially useful for creating new tracks as it gives you total control of the environment of the track and is far superior than the PS3 control system. There is an option to use your kart to create new tracks which is interesting. Although I'm a hack in using these tools, I can't wait to see the PS Vita community create their own tracks as there were some amazing mods with the PS3 from Batman inspired tracks to even "Mario".
 
Graphically, the title looks like a mirror replica of the PS3 version with its detailed yet cartoon inspired environments. Tracks are well designed, especially when you visit real-world locations like the Chinatown and the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco. Lighting is used well as is the diverse colour palette. The racers look great and are well animated as are the karts with all their power-ups and speed boosts. Sound effects and music go hand-in-hand with the gameplay which creates a very sturdy game on the PS Vita.

Final Thoughts?

Thankfully the developers of ModNation Racers: Road Trip have not dumbed down the franchise for the PS Vita but rather taken it to a new level, thanks to the touch screen control options. Gameplay is just as fun as the other consoles, although the absence of real online racing is a little confusing as the PSP version had this. Hopefully an add-on will be available to give this option to gamers at a later date. All in all, it's still a fun experience and definitely the best racer on this console at moment!






 
 



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