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

  • I like Modnation Racers and I am a real fan of this franchise. But the ps vita version of Modnation dissapointed me because it doesn’t have a competitive multiplayer with people arround the world. Why this doesn’t version have the multiplayer when the psp and ps3 version do.I lost interest in purchasing the game and the ps vita console.

    :( :(

  • Really proud of everyone here from the forum posters to Erich from San Diego studios. Modnation PSP online data should be thrown out the window when making this decision. From the LOOKS of the Vita version of the game this looks like a mini PS3 port and then some. This is the platform where play create share games should thrive. Road trip will be downloaded to my Vita if patched with infrastructure mode. This is one of the best games ever in the kart racing genre. If the game plays better and it seems like it does from the game play tweeks from the PS3 version well show the game off, patch it and be proud. I admit yes the PS3 version is on the ropes if the loadtimes are better on the Vita but the Vita is more suited for everything that this game is trying to offer. Erich this game will be or can be better than the PS3 version of the game just like LBP Vita when it is released. The Vita is where those games belong. Plus the competition cannot have a better feature set for their kart racer and Sony is so far ahead in everything from technological standpoint. Deliver the patch and Remanutd5 thanks for getting us this far.

  • Good excuse lol

  • I wouldn’t get too excited when I read something like:

    “All this said, the development team is looking at online head-to-head in a patch. This wouldn’t be available day-1 of the PlayStation Vita launch but it is indeed something being researched as I type this.”

    That’s hardly a promise, and with poor sales numbers SONY will hardly finance an ‘online patch’.

  • at 102 PAINPAS no problem man , im just helping the community , i think the majority of us that want to get the game want online head to head multiplayer and yes i have played the vita and its like having a portable ps3 on your hands , everything your ps3 has the vita have it too but ps home ( which i dont really care about lol ) and yes i agree with you ModNation and Little Big Planet are very good example of games on the GO , sony needs to realize this and add that patch , this is a different story , the vita is everything i wanted to psp to be and even more , i kinda understand they being cautious about multiplayer but i think this time around multiplayer on the GO will be huge , i mean everything is there ( trophies , online chat , multiplayer chat , cross game chat , full psn integration ) psp didnt have some of those features

  • What % of the players with the PS3 version went online? This is obviously much closer to that version than the PSP version.

    It’s an important feature to me. If you really do an online patch, I will buy it. If not, I won’t. Even better, do it Wipeout style with cross PS3 online racing.

  • lol finally no online play….

    Ok then, a game on my ban list, i prefer de psp or ps3 version. and i will waste my money on mario kart 7.

  • Guys, you gotta remember that this game is retailing for just $30, along with several other Vita titles like Reality Fighters. If it was $40-$60, I can understand the outcries, but for $30 and all the other stuff this game has, its actually a pretty good bargain, ESPECIALLY for people like me who’ve never bought any Mod Nation Racer game (not that I’m getting this one right away either mind you, Wipeout 2048 comes 1st). I can tell you right now, after being blown away with everything Reality Fighters does at a Vita Club, I could care less if it has WiFi multiplayer, I’m getting that game eventually either way!

  • Obviously online multiplayer is a feature that the community feels very passionately about. In a ‘pure’ racing game, racing ghosts is more acceptable. In a ‘kart’ racer, however, I can’t interact with a ghost, i.e. no weapons, no sideswiping, etc. This eliminates most of the kart racing strategy.

    What about Ad-hoc Party on the PS3? Is there any indication that this would or wouldn’t work? It isn’t a built in solution, but I might be enough for you and your friends.

  • OMG NO ONLINE PLAY!?!?!?, wahhhh waaah. Kids these days are ridiculous, absolutely absurd. Online gameplay in most games is just terrible. And here you guys are basing your buying decision upon it. I guarantee most of you wouldn’t even play the game anymore after a couple of months.
    If there was an online multiplayer, I probably wouldn’t even touch it. A game like this, most of the focus is on creating and downloading tracks. Not my type of game anyway, hence the reason I probably won’t be getting, prefer LBP.

  • Very mad that there is NOT Infrastructure. Games like this NEED to have Infrastructure, this is the reason why the PSP never reached its full potential.

    NO BUY For me.

  • at 111 you come here complaining about a wanting feature by the fans of the game and you are not even getting it? who is the kid again?

  • If Sony can confirm that the Vita will be compatible with Ad-Hoc Party, that will calm down a lot of people. All my Peace Walker problems were resolved thanks to that little gem/app.

    And Sony should work on getting Home on Vita if they haven’t started yet. I’m sure a lot of Home devotees miss Home whenever they’re not home.

  • So you are launching a multiplayer racing game without online multiplayer?

    How can you not have online multiplayer when the PSP version (a much less multiplayer oriented system) had it?

    No matter how much you try to spin this, this game will BOMB.

  • The “3G don’t support Online play” is BS! i have 3G shared to my PC, PS3 and Phone (via wifi) and i can kick som e Ass*s on blazblue and others games… And they could have just make the Online only for WiFi if they are Lazy… At least WiFi only ONLINE!

    What a Dissapointing game… i’m gona stick with my PS3…

  • “Mod Nation racer: Trainning Trip” beause is just a practice mode with ghosts… :/

  • I’ve rethought my position on online play for this game and I don’t think I need it so it’s all good. The one thing that does bug me is that it sounds like the company is telling the consumers what they want instead of the other way around. This is borderline suicide for any business. Be careful studio peoples.

  • @116 how exactly to you get 3G via wifi? I am confused or u are.

  • You know that some of us are upset over no head-to-head online play? Ummm, more like EVERYONE. Evolving online my ass. Grats on turing what could be a big hit for the Vita into a complete failure because you think you can force people to want your sad excuse for online. Games of this kind are meant to be played head-to-head ffs.

  • it WAS a must buy for me… now its a MAYBE :( SAD!! :'(

  • I’m sorry San Diego but since you this doesn’t have head to head online multiplayer I want be buying this

  • I know you won’t read this but just reiterating what everyone else is saying, no online = no buy.

  • they must say asap that they will patch the online head to head multi on the future patches because people still know that they will not have online head to head…

    @Erich thanks for the good news…

  • I thought the Vita was supposed to be about online play but you don’t support that? Let me make it clear that ad-hoc means absolutely nothing to me. As I said, the more I hear about this game the less I want it. But now it’s 100% settled for me. I’m just going to buy a quad core Android phone soon when they come out and not buy Vita. Vita and it’s launch of games is not exciting at all

  • Thank God you put this information up before the game actually released. I just cancelled my pre-order. I’m still getting the Vita though. Looks like Uncharted will have to hold me over for a little longer than expected.

  • @Rick1220 Just get Wipeout 2048 instead. Can’t go wrong with Wipeout anyway and it not only has real online multiplayer, but cross-play with Wipeout HD on the PS3!

  • Pss i thought the Vita was the next Gen little handheld,but is just going back in somethings like multiplayer, but going forward with the two sticks, & a touch pad,screen.Plus that 3G as i find out more is looking lame since 4G is coming out soon .

  • Boy this is a really stupid move on their part for not including online functionality. Isnt that pretty much a standard for any kart racer now at days. I tell ya, talk about 1 step forward, 2 steps back. There is no good reason that people could not enjoy the pick up and play functionality of a portable while playing competitive head to head online.

    Oh, and to all the people complaining about the complainers (the ones saying “ya know, I dont get why you people are complaining, I enjoy the single player, not the multiplayer etc), i bet you would be singing a different tune if they said “We wanted to evolve the game by not re hashing a single player experience, so we eliminated it”.

  • Speaking as someone who bought MNR for the PSP when it was first released, the big reason that the online play was never popular is because of rampant cheating. Because the PSP was not a very secure device, you could run cheat programs on it which would let someone win the race immediately.

    After a few times of this happening, you realized it was pointless in trying to play it online any further.

  • No online = no buy, how could anyone develop a racing game and not add MP is just mind blowing

  • Well it seems that, despite the responses in this blog and other forums, SCE SD knows what is good for us.

    We need ghosts, leaderboards, secret content from Chicago etc etc.

    Tell you what SCE, I know what I need and it’s not your product. No online = no buy.

  • No online multiplayer ? Come on, this is just TOO BAD. =(

  • @erick (hope it was spelled right)
    Thank you for replying, just wanted to give you alil bit of a explination behind this bs psp, the psp one didn’t not hold up even slightly well to the ps3 version, as in everything was great til you were actually racing, the game became entirely different (in a bad way). It had bad drifting and half the racers. I think kart racers should only sport 8 and 12, or even 16 racers at most. But what ever there. The game just played bad. But this has the gameplay of the ps3 version plus has less loading and hopefully no more crashes that throw you in a u-turn plus more weapons and mines finally separated as it’s own. Plus colours to help you strategize your weapons. I’m not going to lie but please add it (though your basically confirming it will come). But via a patch or free dlc, please dont make us have to pay for it, atleast the new copy buyers :)

  • I’m sorry guys, but I just can’t get this game if there’s no online MP. I absolutely loved MN:R on the PS3; spent a good chunk of summer 2010 online leveling up! I was really hoping this would be my go-to online game on the Vita.

    Looks like many of the fans here would be in favor of delaying the game just so you guys could add a proper online mode in there (and raise that ad-hoc number, too. Four? Really?). I’d definitely buy it then.

  • This is so sad, I was really looking forward to this game. A great showoff-game for the Vita, to make the 3DS-gamers envy… but now, I mean almost thinking about buying a 3ds my self now and skip the Vita.

    Drastic? Maybe, but a racing game without online is just plain stupid. Even if the online havent been used that musch on modnation racers on PSP Im sure it would have sold less copies if it was not included.

    I will not buy this game until there is a working patch with online multiplayer. A real shame, this was the one game I was really looking forward to. :´(

  • Did you even do any research on why the psp MNR’s online wasn’t used much by players, or did you just assume it was because there was no interest in online play? To me it looks like the latter, and if so it pretty clumsy and unprofessional.

    If you had actually looked further than what was on the surface like you are supposed to do you would have found tons of reasons why it wasn’t used, and some of those have been posted here by several people. But hey, what do we know right? We don’t even know what we like in our games apparently.

    If everyone else working with you is as ignorant and out of touch with the people as you are, you can keep your game because even with a patch you lost my sale.

  • I was to buy the Vita the moment I saw the Road Trip title so I could once again enjoy racing online. Then last week you announced no online with the title and my decision was very easy.. “Well I won’t be getting that!”. We all have enough electronic gadgets without the need for one more.. My PS3 is great for games, My laptop and Sony S Tablet :) are great for media access and online connectivity. I would have bought Vita for the games.

    Why are they so determined that their online setup is so great? I can race my friends ghosts in Mario Kart Wii and it is a challenge! Don’t get me wrong. If I know the ghost that’s beating me is my friends ghost who lives 10,500 miles away, it does get competitive. That isn’t the same excitement you get from racing others online, friends or otherwise. Racing online is where the real interaction with others comes from and so does the fun.

    Why don’t they at least try and explain to us gamers, why they don’t have online racing? Instead of telling us about all these other great online features that I now gloss over as my interest has depleted.

  • I won’t go as far as to say I wont buy this game if theres no Multiplayer, but I won’t support this game with DLC purchases without it… In fact I’ll probably trade it in once I’m done the career. However, if Multiplayer were to be patched in, I would cherish this game like I do my PS3 Modnation Racers, I love that game! I was so excited to find out about MNR:RT and thought “Day one purchase”, but after hearing this, its definitely not as exciting, I believe Uncharted: Golden Abyss will be my day one purchase now, with MNR:RT my second purchase.

    I also believe there should be more love towards the PS3 MNR, drop those career extension prices! $30 is more expensive than the game itself!

  • @Erich Waas Now that i know that there might be a patch it totally changed my mind . I was not going to buy ridge racer or wipeout . I really wanted modnation badly since I have for it ps3 . Now that you gave us a ray of hope , I am throwing money at my laptop screen and nothing its happening lol . Seriously tho just take my money , I will buy this game for sure on Feb 15 along with the First Edition . I will gladly support your studio for doing what a lot of others don’t do and that is to listen to their fans . Thanks again .

  • @140 It’s not just the lack of online as the career mode will have no story or cut-scenes either – seems they dropped the ball in every aspect of this thing.

    “+ Mark Wilson on January 9th, 2012 at 3:51 pm said:
    I love Biff & Gary too!…but no career story on the Vita version”

    I wonder what else this version DOESN’T have? I certainly won’t be buying it to find out…

  • @Erich, great to see a reply for this post; although your account needs to be ‘red’, or else it makes it difficult for others to know you have replied; I just found out after reading the Eurogamer article.

    Although I’m not sure if you will return and read my reply (this blog can use some new features for this), but I’ll say thank you anyways; but I would have prefer you mentioning your team is looking into a possible patch, instead of going on about the “rehash features” excuse in your original post; more fans would have been happier.

  • Hi dragonmagician–I’ve been in meetings most of the day but am eating lunch and catching up on the forum posts. Duly noted about the original blog post but please understand that we worked hard on the rich asynchronous features and want to promote these and not focus on the negative. Hopefully there’s some forgiveness for not mentioning this in the original blog though.

    Teflon02 — The head-to-head online patch would naturally be free.

  • Erich – I was one of those in the “single digits” that played ModNation PSP online. At least for a couple of weeks. I’ll echo everyone else’s thoughts about how you shouldn’t assume PSP online play data will match up with Vita online play data; the Vita is built to be an ONLINE, portable console. The PSP wasn’t really built that way from the get-go.

    Also – again, I was one of those that did play online on my PSP. I stopped playing namely because I felt like the PSP version of ModNation just wasn’t as fun online as the PS3 one. I also wasn’t able to invite friends to play or communicate online at all… so there wasn’t much of an incentive for me to play.

    The Vita is supposedly addressing these areas. Judging by your asynchronous features, you know that the Vita is built for the gamer who has strong ties to playing (or thriving off of) online features.

    Anyway, my $0.02. I feel like I’m obligated to give you some comments, as I was a paying customer of the PS3 and PSP versions of your franchise of ModNation games and was dismayed about the decision of no online head-to-head.

  • The PSVita’s online is much more robust than the PSPs. I can’t believe you’re using data from a PSP game to determine what is worth doing on the PSVita. The PSP wasn’t the best online device, about as useless with online as the DS in my book. At least it didn’t have friend codes.

    You also have to factor in the online pass business. Lots of people weren’t happy with that. I can’t imagine many people bought the PSP version of the game either. Given the demo made it out to be a gimped, worse controlling version of the PS3 game which I already owned.

    I wanted to buy this game, but I can’t support the PSVita games that do not properly treat the PSVita as something that is better at online than PSP. If you add multiplayer later, then I’ll gladly add the game to my PSVita collection. Until then, I’ll stick with games that should and do have online (Wipeout) or games that are actually fun without the addition of online (Uncharted).

  • Also, these features are great in themselves, but no online? Please. Kart racers are not fun alone, and if you’ve got no other options to play with people then you’ve got a single player kart racer. Which will be fun for about 2 minutes.

  • @Erich Waas

    Hi, my following post might be meaningless to you and the company behind making the game, however I’ll just like to share a quick story.(Due to me being only one person, 1 sale lost is nothing)

    As soon as Modnation Racers VITA was available to pre-order I did so,I loved the PS3 version and having a similar product in portable form was very exciting.

    The game had so much potential,Imagine downloading tracks,karts and racers then have a online match with those creations.

    I’m sorry but I live in Australia and rarely anyone here will have a VITA so for me I’ll probably never have a proper race with anyone.

    Where as with Online all I have to do is connect to the Internet and race against anyone in the world or country.that takes about a minute or two to achieve.(Unlike the above where it would take me weeks,months to go up to a stranger and race them)

    I also find it Insulting that anyone would say it is a rehash to include online, most of your consumers aren’t dumb, so don’t treat us so.

    Anyway I’m willing to buy your product when or if online is patched in, until then I have plenty of other games to spend my hard earned cash on.

  • Even though I still think ModNation Racers is much better than Mario Kart…

    I will stick with Mario Kart as it supports online play.

  • came here to support the community. As a first day buyer of MNR for ps3 and a fan of the franchise… i sadly but surely can say… No online = No buy.

    Sorry devs.. i love ur work… but not this….

    Hear the voice of ur ppl, so u shalt not perish.

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