ModNation Racers Beta Impressions

18 12 2009

When I first started I was greeted with the terms of use, and then a loading screen. Then I saw the logos of the creators, then another loading screen, shortly after it moved onto a rather cool cut scene, which opens some of the basics on what the story mode will be like, basically you’re a rookie racer who is trying to make it into some tournament. After the video I was faced with a very long loading screen, about 1 min, before I was put into the game.

The menu system is not even menus, it is much like LBP, except your in this town with a bunch of other players. The things such as Quick race, and online race were all under garaged, which you went up to to select them. Your basically driving around selecting game modes etc.

Creating my character, or Mod as the game calls them also had a lot of options, even though about 90% of the things were locked, there was still a ton of customization. Also with creating the car, a ton of customization was available, even with limited beta tools.

Now where this game truly shines is the track editor. I so far have only made one track, and I am very happy with it. The editor is very easy to use, and there is a lot of options for you to chose from. However, it felt very limiting when compared to LittleBigPlanet, but that is to be expected.

This game also looks very good, with hiqh quality lighting, textures, and effects, much higher than you would expect with the fully customizable tracks. It has a very cartoony look to it, but its style does the game justice.

So far this game is great with concept, but the execution is not top notch. The track editor is amazing, but still limiting, and takes a little to get used to. There is a ton of loading screens, and loading takes a long time. When in game there is a lot of pop-in textures and objects, especially on the custom tracks that have a lot of it. Also there is a bit of frame rate drop when you first get into the game, and first get out of a loading screen.

I love this game, and will be buying it day one. I hope they fix some of the performance issues somewhere along in the beta, and possibly add more tools for us, but so far it is a great start, to what possible could be an amazing game.

-Jidery

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