Online Features in ModNation Racers: Road Trip for PS Vita

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Online Features in ModNation Racers: Road Trip for PS Vita

I wanted to give Mark Wilson a break this week so that I could talk about the robust online features in ModNation Racers: Road Trip. The team here in San Diego created an impressive list of online functionality to take advantage of the WiFi/3G and GPS functionality. This game is intended to let you take advantage of your road trips—whether they’re across the country, to another state or just traveling between home and work or school. More importantly, ModNation Racers: Road Trip was designed to work around your schedule and let you compete with your friends whenever (and wherever) you want.

PS Vita: ModNation Racers: Road Trip

1. Competitive Localized Leaderboards
When a gamer who has opted to “Use Location Data” posts a lap time to the Leaderboards, that time is connected to their current location. Gamers can personalize their location names (i.e., My Home, My Work, Mark’s House Where I Always Win, etc.) for easy reference. These times become part of the Local Leaderboards which gamers can use to compete in a fun arcade-style atmosphere.

Gamers can also select one of their saved locations and view other competitors’ times that were earned nearby. For example, if I earn a great time on “Construction Mayhem” while at “Mark’s House,” I can check my rank versus other gamers’ local times and more importantly, my friends…including Mark. The game would find the 8, 24 or 48 closest gamers to “Mark’s House” who posted local times for “Construction Mayhem.” This means you’ll have an ever-expanding level of challenge through asynchronous competition to play instantly when and where you want!

2. Continual Match-Making, Ghosts and Time Trials
Where ModNation Racers for the PS3 automatically matches gamers against one of the most difficult lap times in the community, ModNation Racers: Road Trip instead matches you against other gamers’ Ghosts who have set times which are competitive to yours. This continual match-making and the shorter play time of a single lap competition makes for a fun and constantly challenging online gaming experience. For those of us who are competitive with our friends, we can select a filter to race against friends’ ghosts.

An option on the Vita even allows you to receive a push notification whenever your time is beat or to boast to your friends when you beat theirs—I believe I will use this feature plenty with Mark once ModNation Racers: Road Trip goes live next month.

3. Travel Points: Time For A Road Trip

The first time a gamer checks-in with Mod Explorer the game will recognize their location. Every time a gamer checks-in at any location after that they will earn Travel Points based on the distance from their last check-in. Individual gamers will then unlock additional parts for Track Studio when they reach certain amounts of Travel Points. There will also be an in-game leaderboard ranking gamers by the amount of Travel Points they have earned.

big ben

3a. Global Travel Points: Help Us Help You
Travel Points earned by every gamer are added together to form Global Travel Points. When the community of gamers reach certain distance milestone amounts of Global Travel Points everyone who uses Mod Explorer will unlock new track creation parts! This could be how world peace starts. Don’t you want to be a part of it?


4. Destination Check-ins: Better Than A Passport Stamp
Mod Explorer contains 45 featured cities across the globe–each city with three distinct destinations. When a gamer checks-in at a destination that they can find using PS Vita’s GPS functionality, they will unlock unique creation pieces to use in the creation studios.

In addition, the entire ModNation Racers: Road Trip community is further rewarded when parts associated with the destination are unlocked for the global community of gamers. For example, if you check-in at Navy Pier in Chicago, you will unlock associated parts for your use. When the predetermined threshold of player check-ins at Navy Pier has been reached, a unique part is unlocked for ALL gamers. Other parts associated with Navy Pier will be unlocked for all gamers as the number of unique player check-ins increase there.

Finally, when a gamer checks-in at a destination, they are prompted to take a picture and modify it using their Mod and Kart. This is done with ModNation Racers: Road Trip – Mod Postcards feature (See last week’s blog.)


5. Ad-Hoc Play: It’s ModNation Party Time!
For those racers looking for that head-to-head experience with your friends, Ad-Hoc play is where it’s at. Up to four gamers can race simultaneously on any San Diego Studio track or choose from over 500,000 user created tracks from the ModNation Racers community. That ought to keep you busy for a millennium or so.

6. Race, Create, Publish and Download!
As you’d expect from a ModNation Racers game, you have incredibly strong creation studios literally at your fingertips to create anything in your imagination. Publish your creations for the entire community to enjoy. And if creation isn’t your thing, enjoy downloading anything published by the entire community. And to sweeten the deal, you have full backwards compatibility to download any of the over 3 million creations from ModNation Racers PS3!

I know there are some of you that are disappointed that ModNation Racers: Road Trip doesn’t let you play head-to-head online other than ad-hoc. But we really wanted to evolve online functionality and take advantage of the PlayStation Vita’s unique feature set in new ways. If all we ever did as developers is rehash features that have been done in previous games, we’d still be entering passwords instead of using save files and you’d have to start the entire game over after you lost your three lives (extra 1-ups aside). While online head-to-head has been a mode used in many games in recent years, we focused on making a game that is crafted for how portable games are most often played—in quicker “pick up and play” sessions multiple times in a day. Your online interaction, competition and socialization will always be when it’s convenient for you. I hope that all of you are as interested to check-out the robust online features that ModNation Racers: Road Trip has as we are to see you enjoy them!

ModNation Racers For PS3

Hot Lap Track of the Week: Twilight Seidenstrassen by big-village_920_


Hot Lap Tracks of the Week:
Monday: Cathedral Of Tundrith by John31269
Tuesday: @ the lost city by marusarusa
Wednesday: They Took Our Town! by MrDufus
Thursday: Mod Canyon River Tour by ArgorokX
Friday: Crystal Waltz by marusarusa
Saturday: Twilight Seidenstrassen by big-village_920_
Sunday: Hiyazaki Point Raceway by atheistsw

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10 Author Replies

  • So… from what I can tell, there is no TRUE online competitive play, correct? Only local / ad-hoc multiplayer with four players?

    If so, that is incredibly disappointing, seeing as how the PSP version had 4 player online competitive play.

    Racing against ghosts ≠ racing against human players

  • They were probably rushing to get the game out for the Vita launch. Does suck though.

  • im sorry Erich i was so freaking excited about ModNation Racers Road Trip but no Online racing multiplayer = no buy from me , how come you guys forgot about “THE” basic online feature ? anything else is just bonus , anyways good luck with the game .

  • Oh well hehe thank you for saving my money Woot!

  • i will be getting Wipeout 2048 instead , if you guys add true online multiplayer i will get the game

  • So If the 3G Vita is the only model to have the GPS, then you won’t be able to access all the additional features for MNR:RT if you have the Wifi only model? Or does the Wifi only have GPS as well?

  • “This game without online mode is worthless and ridiculous…. “

  • I’m not buying the excuses on no online races. I would love to pick up a single online race here and there on the Vita. This is a deal breaker for me and this game, and I loved the first game. I think it would be better to delay the game and add in online racing than launch without it.

  • I will start saving money for the Vita, and airline tickets to all of these cities… i’ll Start By Rio de Janeiro in Brazil!!!!!

  • I’m a fan of ModNation, but what year is this… 2005? How does online not make the cut for this type of game?

    Even the portable Mario Kart has online, for Pete’s sake!



  • Regressive count Until Ps Vita (in Days)


  • Erich,

    All of those “asynchronus” features are indeed excellent. But honestly I’m still disappointed with the lack of online, infrastructure, multiplayer races. I hope the team can patch this after release or perhaps delay the game to add it in.

  • So no Online Multiplayer and now ONLY 4 player vs ad-hoc? WOW! You guys are just ruining one of my favourite series to date

  • Will we be able to play mod nation on vita with the ps3 mod nation people?

  • The thing with these features is there are all nice bonuses to a game that has online multiplayer. By themselves, they are a useless incentive to get the game. Nobody I know that likes Modnation is going to get this game since they’ve heard it doesn’t have online multiplayer. None of these little features make up for the lack of it.

  • DARIAN_WILL, you won’t be able to play Modnation on Vita with ANYBODY, unless you have three other friends with a Vita and a copy of the game within a limited range (say 25 feet or so).

  • Just like almost everyone here, i must tell that yeah, those asynchronous features are cool and that, but come on, we are in 2012 now, this kind of game should not ship without an online multiplayer mode, it´s just absurd, and does not make any sense.

    Sorry but your last paragraph spins and excuses are not good enough.

    This game simply does not deserve to sell until it gets online mode.

  • Can you vote 0 for an article instead of 1?

    This is one of the worst spins ever.

  • That’s the worst excuse I ever see in my whole life… Pathetic….

  • Wait, hold on a second, I just read that last paragraph…..HAHAHAHA. How innovative and forward-thinking of you guys to not include online play in a racing game! I was so sick of that archaic way of doing things. I don’t know why more developers move to Ad-Hoc. Now, THAT’s the future!

  • Hey Erich
    Any love for the MNR PS3 community?
    Do you think the DLC track packs will go on sale anytime soon?
    10$ a piece is a little pricey, I think it is time for a price reduction. I know there are a lot of people who would be interested in the DLC track packs at a lower price point, myself included.

  • Everything about the post was great until the “rehash features” part; I kinda wish you took that out, and instead say “sorry we couldn’t provide this feature; but we will continue to listen to fan feedback and evolve our future projects according” or something like that. Although you were going to get negative comments on this post either way.

    Just wanted to say I’m still interested, but haven’t decided if I’m getting it for sure yet. I’m going to compare it to Motorstorm RC and get the better game I think; I don’t need two racers on my Vita.

  • Ad-Hoc Multiplayer only?

    This game is DoA, sorry.

  • @21, I know…

    As Erich Waas said: “If all we ever did as developers is rehash features that have been done in previous games, we’d still be entering passwords instead of using save files and you’d have to start the entire game over after you lost your three lives (extra 1-ups aside).”

    Honestly, I don’t mean to be disrespectful, but that entire quote is just so absolutely ridiculous. Hey, saving is a rehash feature, so why not remove that while you’re at it?

    I’ve got a good reply for you to calm people if you took out save files. Something like: Yeah, we removed the save ability. But if all we ever did as developers is rehash features we’d still be sitting on the couch doing 4 player split screen instead of playing online.

  • That excuse is pathetic. Even the PSP version has online play. You can’t take a step backwards and call it going forwards.

    The whole point of the Vita is to have that home console experience on the go. I was really excited about this game, but not having any online multiplayer makes this a resounding “PASS” for me.

  • Now I’m starting to get disappointed with the PSVita lineup of games not having online. It’s starting to get ridiculous.

  • I had this and my vita paid off and even requested night off from work to get both but I have cancelled both preorders and put them towards better games (Diablo 3: CE and Twisted Metal) and still have money for more games that I might like. Vita was my bday gift to myself but now until I see a better use of the 3g and some actual online infrastructure games then I will pass on the vita and its games

  • Its lame how this generation has gone mad because of online multiplayer…its good?Yeah it is…but its not a rule that the games must have an online…..people always complain about online and that is why the games that doesn’t need online….made the choice to make a online and fail(read:Dead Space,Assassin’s)….people always talking as if the games were started with online first to come with single player after….But online doesn’t matter if the single is awesome….online is a bonus for the true game….people who play only online is clearly that isn’t a true gamer….Mod Nation online is awesome,but are you guys kidding?…you will not buy Road Trip just because will not have an competitive online?…Dear God what happened with the world of gaming?….This is very sad….Mod Nation:Road Trip is a great game and I’ll buy for sure….the game has Publish and Download! and this is enough.

  • at 29 well ModNation doesnt have a story mode , i mean career mode is kool and all but racing and shooter games NEED online multiplayer mode since their single player campaign arent all that so yea no online = no buy from me

  • Please delay this game and add online.

    Thank you.

  • God of War , Uncharted , inFAMOUS , Shadow of Colossus those games dont need online multiplayer , their single player campaign are superb but a racing game with no online multiplayer ? lol yea ok

  • the end of the world is December 21 ! you guys think it’s now !! if you don’t want to get the game then don’t !! there are some people that still do !! quit crying about it !! wah wah wah !!!!!

  • I think it sounds cool…

    I’m still a little confused with the “Destination Check-ins: Better Than A Passport Stamp” mode but it’s definitely innovative. I could see people taking road trips just for “Destination Check-ins” kinda like fallowing your favorite band around the country for the summer ;)

    I think ModNation RT did the smart thing by innovating their online features… I’m sure they’re some gamers that would rather sit and play for hours but that’s what the PS3 version is for. This game is pick up and play its not meant to waste your free time but to take advantage of it.

  • if you want to play online then go play on the yellow line of a busy hi-way !!!!

  • Is the PS Vita (and specifically, ModNation Racers Road Trip) compatible with Ad Hoc Party on the PS3?

  • Not saying that I wouldn’t have wanted head to head online, but I think the people complaining will buy it regardless of what they are saying now. Not to mention that the asynchronous features are robust and can be used without needing to stay at a Wi-fi spot for 10-15 minutes.

  • I would say that this game is better suited for portability than ever before and I hope that more games do this as well since we only really get 5-15 minutes to play a match as we go about our lives unless you plan on sitting down at home to play it which is what most people did with the PSP. But, I think that developers are adding this robust features to encourage you to take your PS Vita whenever you leave home.

  • None of you people get it yet do you???

    -PS Vita is launching with 3G, but 3G does not support the bandwidth needed to play actual realtime online, so the company did the best they could (no doubt they are forced by Sony to make 3G seem viable) so they made it’s online modes able to be played via 3G so people could compete and have a sense of competition no matter where they are with a cellular signal.

    They added wifi adhoc mode for people that want traditional play locally.

    It really isn’t that hard to understand, I mean Sony has piles of the 3G version sitting around and they need to force a few publishers to use 3G safe modes of play, so here you go….

    Sadly until Sony sees that the 3G version is a dead end, devs are going to be stuck catering to it in order to push units!

    In any case, the game works fine for me I have real friends in real life locally that have no problem having a few game nights a week so adhoc really isn’t a deal breaker.

  • #31 Wilmosca, I cannot believe what you are saying. When, in the last 15 years, have kart racing games EVER been about single player? Before online, there was splitscreen, but it was still multiplayer focused. Portable games can’t do splitscreen, so we need online play. Ad-hoc is inherently flawed, because when we played games splitscreen, we didn’t all have to have a console and game to do it. With Ad-hoc, you do. I understand that same games don’t need online multiplayer (dead space and assassin’s creed), but some genres absolutely do. And for them to act like not including online multiplayer was somehow innovative is beyond ridiculous.

  • Hot shots golf 6 also has this mode, tournaments can be finished at your leisure and scores get updated at the end to see who ended up winning the events. It’s more casual and far less data hungry to make it safe for 3G users. In Japan it’s the preferred mode because it is less tedious then waiting for each player to take a turn etc. instead you just play at your own pace and the next day you get to see the rankings and scoreboards for the game.

  • sorry no buy !!!!!!!!!!!!! u can add all the new cool features u want but without true online play this games is only good for a few days we live in a world of trash talking and show casing skills and if you cant do that online then games will not sell look at the numbers from all games that done this …. who cares about uploading ur fastest time to a leader broad that is not fun not one bit people with jobs are your customers not 3 years online is the now this is not 1995 this is 2012 sorry but WIPE OUT is my buy even with less feature u drop the ball features r cool but if u do not have online mode who cares but the developers …………………………………P.S who ever decided to take online off the game should be fired I guess i will just the psp version on my VITA

  • @ 41,vanwinkle – Agree with you man in the part ” And for them to act like not including online multiplayer was somehow innovative is beyond ridiculous.”….this is really ridiculous.But I’m not talking only about kart games….and even if I was…the single player is always more important than online features.I’m talking that is very very lame the way you guys are judging Road Trip like if it was garbage just because will not have online.

    @ 31,33,remanutd5 – Yeah agree with you with shooters and racing games with online….but Road Trip has so many and great features that others racing game dont have that didn’t need an online and still got publish and all that stuff….yeah agree with the games you cited although Uncharted 2 multiplayer is beyond awesome….but now I’ll ask one question….if the Mod Nation for PS3 had not competitive online…you would not buy too?

  • @43

    Why would anyone buy a game anymore, specifically a racing game, that is all about creating and showing off your creations to others, that does NOT have an online multiplayer component so that you CAN show off those creations. – It is just completely ignorant!!!

    Its one thing seeing a cool mod or kart or track, its another being able to race against the people that make those mods, karts and tracks.

    I just hope the game gets enough sales for a new itteration, but it does poorly enough where they get through their thick skulls that online multiplayer IS ABSOLUTELY MANDATORY IN A GAME LIKE THIS!

  • Also, i’m a 37 year old gamer. So when i’m on the road, i’m usually driving back and forth to work, so my only real luxury time to play a game like this is when i’m at home relaxing, or on the rare occasion away from home when i’m not driving.

    Yes, i’m old, but i’ve been loving video games my whole life, and i love the concept of MNR, which is why it hurts me so much to see such an important component left out. I believe that San Diego Studios is actually catering to an even smaller group of players than they think they are. Most players that play are not going to have 4 other friends nearby with a Vita, so their only real option is online multiplayer. And without that, it leaves alot of us without a way to play.

    And i personally have a preference for handheld games over consoles nowadays, so this hurts me even more.

  • @40 I think your a bit lost… No one is complaining about the 3G version. You can still play online via a wifi spot with both versions of the PS VITA. People are complaining about not being able to play head to head online on a game that they are already use to playing online… That is the problem. It’s ok to take away a feature that almost no one was using but to take away a feature, which most people who have the game (ps3/psp) were using, isn’t really smart. Patch it in at a later time when you see the sales not where they should be and then everyone here will go out and buy the game. Simple.

  • @ 44,46,Lion Franco – Yeah must agree with you in some parts….but no is not ABSOLUTELY MANDATORY in a game like Road Trip…I was starting to agree with you because I thought on LBP…and it would be weird without online…but think in all things the game has that you could do…unless you hate do something like 100% in games….is very cool the replay of the game….agree with that “Most players that play are not going to have 4 other friends nearby with a Vita” and this will happen with me too because I dont have any friend close with PS3 and I will not have any with a Vita but I still got a lot to play in the game and look my only real option is Online Multiplayer but I’m not complaining…also is very nice that you are 37 old and play games,and I understand what u said about you prefer handheld but you’re looking just in your way….anyway you can always go back to your PS3 and play Mod Nation online.

  • after reading all the comments last week I thought you’ll would understand how important online head to head is.if this gets online head to head later I’ll buy but for now no buy for me.

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