ModNation Racers for the PSP is the handheld little brother of the PlayStation 3 customisable kart-racing game of the same name. Like its sibling it shamelessly draws inspiration from LittleBigPlanet, encouraging players to create and share their own tracks, karts and drivers.
At its heart ModNation Racers is a kart game along the same lines as Mario Kart. Cartoony racers battle their way around extreme tracks avoiding intentional hazards and obstructions. At the same time racers must avoid and unleash an arsenal of weapons and power-ups scattered around the circuit.
ModNation is populated by cute little folks called Mods (looking not unlike Lego people). It is as one of these Mods that you enter the ModNation Racing Championship (MRC). The MRC career mode gently eases the player into the many different facets of the game by challenging the player to create and edit his driver, karts and tracks. The game’s story is told through amusing and well-rendered videos that chronicle the player’s character rise from racing wannabe to champion.
As well as the career mode, players can dip straight into a single race. There is a choice of Action Race (featuring weapons and power-ups), Last Man Standing (where the last kart to complete each lap gets eliminated) and Pure Race (no weapons or power-ups, first to cross the finish line is the winner). The community functions including the community race option were not available at time of writing.
As fun as the racing is, a lot of time can be spent customising your driver and kart and building your own tracks. The track editor, even on the humble PSP, is very comprehensive, allowing for the creation of very detailed and professional looking circuits with little effort.
ModNation Racers is a lot of fun and the customisation, especially the track editor, will provide hours of entertainment. The fact that this is all squeezed into a tiny PSP that you can take anywhere makes ModNation Racers a must-have title for all PSP fans.