ModNation Racers is the newest installment to PlayStation’s innovative Play, Create and Share genre. ModNation Racers is a thoroughly fresh take on classic kart racing that empowers the player to personalize their entire game. Players can express themselves by creating their own Mod character, styling their own racing kart and even building – in just minutes – an imaginative track that can be shared with the rest of the PlayStation community via the free PlayStation Network service. The easy-to-use editing studio tools make this creative process accessible to players of all levels. Not feeling creative? ModNation Racers presents a humorous story with a wealth of pre-made characters, karts, tracks and challenges for all players.
ModNation Racers is fun and competitive kart racing re-imagined. Redefining the kart racing genre, the processing power of PS3 allows for interaction with dynamic obstacles in the surrounding environment, the fun of real-time physics and handling in a speedy kart, free online play and more. Drive your kart against enemy AI, friends in your living room, or friends and foes online on the PlayStation Network. The team at United Front Games’ successful history with racing games ensures the core racing game play is best in class.
Players can express themselves in ModNation Racers by designing an imaginative Mod character and crafting a cool kart that insures a stylish drive around the track. Additionally, players are given simple and accessible tools to create any track they can dream up. They can spend mere minutes designing a circuit or hours perfecting it with the same tools the developers used to design the pre-made tracks. To start creating, players simply drive their kart and watch the track created in real-time behind them. They can add hairpin turns, rickety bridges or other elements to the race track, or even include environmental components like a stunning sunset, full mountain ranges and more.
Once players are happy with their track designs, Mod character or tricked-out kart, they can share and race these creations with the rest of the world online via PSN. Furthermore, players can download others’ unlocked creations, mod them, and then re-upload to the ModNation Racers community. ModNation Racers gives players the ability to rate and comment on others’ creations, and see how their track ranks within the community. With all this accessible editing and re-editing, players will have access to a constantly changing array of user generated characters, karts and tracks. Sophisticated social networking components, filters and leaderboards ensure the community’s best and favorite creations rise to the top and are easy to find.
Strategy – Using the Ladder
In ModNation Racers you can choose to upgrade your weapons to make them more powerful, but that doesn’t always come easy. When you get hammered with a lightning bolt from the sky, at the very least, you know your opponent had to work for it. In addition to having the choice between upgrading and firing, we also wanted players to plan out their attacks and try to utilize weapons in different ways. With that in mind, we designed each to have three distinct levels – so when you upgrade, you change the properties of the weapon, which then gives you a different style of attack.
Using the Bolt ladder as an example, players can decide to fire off a level-1 Bolt attack for a quick, but risky electrical takedown. They can save up to a level-2 Chain Bolt for a homing attack capable of electrocuting multiple opponents, or they can wait until they have a level-3 Bolt Storm (the most powerful) and try to shock entire pack. Finally, any level of weapon can be dropped behind the kart as a mine. The higher the level of weapon dropped, the more potent the mine.
This is a great way to leave traps for your opponents, and incidentally, gives the player in the lead the ability to still be able to use the weapons they have collected. Now you’re probably asking, “Why would I not just save up and always fire a powerful level-3?” Well, a number of reasons actually, but first and foremost is that your weapons can be knocked out by an opponent’s attack, so holding a weapon for too long might cause you to eventually lose it.
Also, level-3 weapons take time to work their way through the pack, so your opponents might finish the race before they are hit, or they may have built up enough boost to shield your attack.
One of the core mantras when balancing the weapons was to ensure that there aren’t any “silver bullets.” No matter how powerful a weapon is, there is still a chance to evade it. We also wanted to ensure a tight race, so the power of each stun is scaled based on your position in the race and distance from the player attacking. What that does is allow anyone in the pack to always have a chance. This isn’t so much a “punish the leader” situation, but a way to prevent stalemates. If players in positions 7th to 1st are hit by the player in 8th and stunned for an equal length of time, nothing will change. By having the weapons stun time (slightly) increase as it passes through the race pack, it helps to create a more dynamic race. This then opens up more opportunities for everyone to have a chance at changing their position.
Let’s be clear though, there isn’t going to be a significant difference between the weapons power on the last racer as compared to the leader, but enough to make the leader worry that there are always racers on their tail. We have raced thousands millions of times in the office, and a skilled driver utilizing all of the tools at their disposal can maintain a lead, and that was an important factor for us. Skilled drivers should be rewarded for skilled play, which in turn causes other players to have to think and play differently.
We have a particular useful strategy we sometimes employ here at the office to take down a skilled driver. Two players will “team up” to swap positions and then each fire at the player in front in quick succession, the first to hopefully drain their shield, and the second to take them out. Very effective, although normally those alliances last about as long as the distance it takes to get to the next set of item pods, at which point all bets are off.
- Customized Karting Experience – Whether the player is a race car driver, a newcomer to videogames or an aspiring game developer, they can show their talents off in ModNation Racers. The power of creation is in the player’s hands.
- Accessible Creation Tools – ModNation Racers includes easy creation tools in the Track Studio, Character Studio and Kart Studio that allow the player to design something comprehensive and fun in a matter of minutes. Players can invest minimal time and enjoy basic creating, or they can invest more time and make sure every lake, mountain, banked turn and power-up is placed perfectly.
- Classic Kart Racing Action – ModNation Racers delivers exceptional kart handling and physics technology on PS3 that makes for fast and fun racing. Players can drift their karts around corners, boost for more speed, attack opponents with weapons and interact with the world around them.
- Story Campaign – The humorous story of ModNation Racers sees the player rise up to become an elite racer. The narrative, tutorials, challenges, and rewards reveal all the key features.
- Game Modes – In addition to the Story Campaign, other single and multiplayer player modes will let players show off their skills in varied challenges with their favorite characters and karts.
- Extensive PlayStation Network Options – Features include matchmaking, detailed stats and leaderboards, Friends List management, communication tools, etc.
- Vinyl Art Style – Inspired by urban vinyl art, ModNation Racers sports a stylish and attractive look and design for young and old players alike.
- User-Generated Content – User generated content in ModNation Racers will keep this karting world fresh and alive so that every race is a new and fun experience.
- Vote for the Best – Players can participate in the karting community in ModNation Racers by voting on any creation as they view it and race it
- Attacking and Offensive Driving – Winning the race is only half of the fun! Players can use combat-like racing strategies to attack other karts with an array of dramatic weapons. For those interested in focusing solely on racing, ModNation Racers has a Pure Race mode.
- Trophy Support – ModNation Karting supports a host of fun and challenging trophies to collect along the way.
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