Reader Review: WipEout 2048

I've spent a fair amount of time with my PS Vita now (mostly with Rayman: Origins) and WipEout 2048 is being cited as one of the must have launch titles. Is this a fair evaluation? Reader Review regular Ben Latimore investigates...

WipEout 2048

Wipeout has been the go-to game for high speed, high skill racing for years. Since debuting on the PlayStation it’s provided an electric soundtrack to go with its hovercars speeding through stupidly tight futuristic tracks. Now with the Vita version showing off the system, let’s see if the game crashes into a wall or hits the finish line with a speed pad.

Loved

Speed Of Fun: There's a real sense of speed in Wipeout. You’re constantly zooming around the tracks, dodging walls, firing off projectiles and hitting speed pads. Combat events eventually degenerate into players and AI alike slamming the fire button to no end, races are tense to the very finish and Zone mode is just something else entirely!

Techno to Race By: With a soundtrack led by Deadmau5 and The Chemical Brothers, the electronica soundtrack in Wipeout 2048 fits the environments and speed perfectly. It's good for keeping your head in the action while providing a backdrop to create the atmosphere. According to my research some of the tracks have been taken from previous versions of Wipeout; and since I never would’ve known this it’s win-win – new players get a great soundtrack and returning players get a blast from the past.

Multiplayer Campaign: While the single player campaign is pretty typical in terms of selecting challenges and such, the multiplayer side of the game works in exactly the same way...and it happens to be more fun. You're given an objective to beat in any particular mode and then dropped right into a lobby. Finish the objective, get experience. Find one particular mission too hard? 3 failures and you're passed on. I didn't think something so simple could be so addictive — you're always moving forward, and your progress is kept in the single player.

Dat Intro: The intro video played when starting the game is amazing. Yes, it’s that good that it gets its own point here. Don’t spoil it for yourself on YouTube, be sure to watch it on the Vita first.

On the Fence

A Grinding Man’s Game: Wipeout, while extremely fun, can also be incredibly punishing. Tracks are laid out very specifically, and it’s possible to miss every single weapon or boost pad in a chain, or to slam into a wall because you didn’t take a corner very specifically. The game requires a lot, and I mean a LOT of practice, because by the end of the campaign the AI is very, very difficult to face off against. If you’re someone who is prone to raging or throwing stuff at the wall, you will probably want to avoid 2048.

Hated

Read Speed of a Turtle: The loading times are massive, something I can't believe flash media is capable of. It's possible to be waiting a full 20 seconds to load a single track, and the initial load when turning on the game is just about that long. And this is from the memory card. Thankfully, a day one patch improved this dramatically.

It’s a little bit tough to recommend to the casual racing fan, considering that it requires a lot of skill and a lot of patience to get right. But if you like a good challenge, and a real feeling of accomplishment as you blast your enemies off the track, then I really don’t think I can recommend Wipeout 2048 more.


Comments

    gg never knew it was deadmau5 ... got some bragging to do to my brother

    Haven't played as much as I would have liked of this, but the handling is very tight and the tracks i've played so far do give you some room to play around with.

    Hitting Zone 60+ on the second Zone attempt makes feel very comfortable with the game and will need to book sometime with this to progress through the rest of the game.

    Not so much a fan of the MP though, it loses points because of the lack of custom races/lobbies.

    I was skeptical about making a prequel to the series and even though it throws out the WipEout canon abit, it's still a worthy entry into the series!

    Mark - if Ben hasn't already done a review of Rayman Origins on the Vita, can I recommend he does?

    One of the main annoyance is that I play with wipeout controls which is almost the same as HD. Thrust is the X button which is very close to the analog stick, which I sometime keep hitting.

    Haha, funny because for the last couple of hours I have been watching 2048 videos on YouTube!

    I want it so badly! D:

    The game is a bit of a turn off for me. I liked the first few tracks, but the final year is too hard and it makes me feel retarted when I still smash into walls so much. It's not a pick up and play game, and although the learning curve isn't as bad as Dota 2, it's still pretty steep.

      I will admit I'm having trouble even getting to 2050. The Step Up to A Class challenge has me smashing into everything.

    This looks good. If we never ever see the light of a 3DS F-Zero game (I think an F-Zero X remake with 3D will be amazing IMO) then this looks like the next closet game.

    This looks good. If we never ever see the light of a 3DS F-Zero game (I think a F-Zero X remake with 3D will be amazing IMO) then this looks like the next closet game.

    Im slowly getting into 2048 but even as a racing vet, im finding this bloody hard.
    I find the compactness of the Vita to be a major hurdle for 2048 with the screen being too small and the buttons being too close together. I tried playing it on the train yesterday but it just work as a portable title.
    But when I'm at home and relaxed, its pretty fun

    Is it worth getting if I've got the PS3 Wipeout HD or is it too similar?

      Well Wipeout HD's tracks will be eventually released as free DLC if you own Wipeout HD, along with cross platform play. If you're a fan of Wipeout it's probably worth it though.

        Cool, shall probably ozgameshop it one of these days when I'm cashed up, cheers

    Has anyone figured out if it is possible to do Cross-Play ad-hoc with a PS3? Either on the same network, or even by joining a friends game online if you have to? I had an annoying time trying to get this working and came up empty handed, you cannot join a friends PS3 or Vita game in session, nor can you pull up in the same lobby... Everything else is great though.

    They fixed this with a patch today One_Man_Matrix

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