|System: PS Vita|
|Dev: SCE San Diego|
|Release: February 15, 2012|
|Screen Resolution: 544p||Mild Cartoon Violence|
Also, the developers didn't quite get the rubber banding or the difficulty right. I went rather abruptly from winning races on the first try to having trouble finishing better than seventh. And once you master the harder tracks, even your better-run races won't always lead to a good finish—the rubber banding keeps the other racers too close to you, even when you drive perfectly, and if you happen to fall victim to a projectile or trap on the last lap, forget about it. If you're the type who gets angry when games cheat or when you lose thanks to randomness rather than your own bad playing, work on your self control if you don't want to throw your spiffy new Vita against the wall.
And perhaps most bizarrely, Road Trip doesn't work very well on a technical level. Of course, the problems here—long load times, textures that belong on a PSX and not a "mini PS3," 3D objects that go right through each other—can be found in plenty of games, even on current-generation full-size consoles. But if a launch title is supposed to show off the new hardware, Road Trip will leave people wondering what was so outdated about their PSP—that it didn't award them "Mod Miles," good for in-game bonuses when they happen to travel long distances with their Vitas? Heck, at least on the PSP they could race their friends online.
If the decision was between releasing this version of Road Trip at the Vita's launch and releasing a fully realized Road Trip six months or so down the line—that is, between putting out a forgettable launch title that fails to promote the system and dropping a good game that could sell well over the holidays—I think they made the wrong choice. The single-player career mode and customization options make this a fun diversion, but it's not as addictive or polished as Mario Kart, it lacks key features, and it fails to take full advantage of the Vita's hardware. This is a bargain-bin purchase for people who love kart racing, not a must-own title for gamers of all stripes. I, for one, will not be disappointed if LittleBigPlanet's entry into kart racing means ModNation's demise.
Date: February 17, 2012