ModNation Racers on PlayStation Vita Blow-Out Preview.

In our line of work, we're constantly moving on to the next thing. But ModNation Racers was one of those titles that never fell too low down our stack of PS3 games. We'd pull it out every rainy Sunday or slow afternoon, just to browse the game's latest creations, or race a few laps with our friends. Heck, even when our main TV had to go in for repairs, we picked up a copy of the PlayStation Portable version just to get our ModNation fix. We love the series.

It's one of those releases that's always felt like its on the cusp. Not enough mainstream attention to blow-up, but certainly enough fan admiration to become an important franchise in the PlayStation's line-up. Rumours of an entry in the kart-racing series for Sony's upcoming PlayStation Vita have been flowing for a while, but during its E3 press conference, Sony confirmed that the game was coming to the new handheld.

It's a brilliant fit too. Using PlayStation Vita's multitude of input options, track and kart creation is easier then ever. Let's take a look at everything we know.

  • Comparable. We enjoyed the PlayStation Portable version of ModNation Racers for what it was, but it felt a few steps behind the PlayStation 3 release. The drifting mechanic for one just wasn't as slidey and satisfying as in the PlayStation 3 version. It felt rigid and stiff. That's not true of ModNation Racers on the PlayStation Vita, which is being developed by series creators United Front Games. The Vita version has the same fluid, satisfying drift mechanic from the main game, and also has a comparable visual style, with bright colours and chunky graphics.
  • Track creation. United Front's still keeping Mod and Kart creation under-wraps, but it is showing off the Track creation using a bunch of PlayStation Vita's input interfaces. Routes can be drawn using the touch screen, and then modified in similar ways to the PlayStation 3 version. The interesting thing is just how you go about doing those modifications. For example, to place a mountain on the track you simply push underneath the screen using the Vita's rear touch-pad. To create craters and lakes you do the opposite, pushing on the front of the screen to create dips in the land-scape. Both intuitive and kinda genius, right?
  • New campaign. ModNation Racers on the PlayStation Vita boasts a brand new campaign featuring 20 new tracks, and presumably some new environment types for you to work with.
  • All the old. But while its packing plenty of new content, ModNation Racers on the PlayStation Vita will also boast all of the goods created in the previous game. Considering how many amazing tracks, vehicles and characters there are already available, that's a huge coup for the portable racer.

ModNation Racers is expecting to launch within the PlayStation Vita's launch window.