TGS 2011: Ridge Racer Vita Hands-On

With the launch date for the PlayStation Vita confirmed, we take a spin with the popular racing franchise Ridge Racer.

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A new console release and a new Ridge Racer go hand-in-hand. With the Japanese release of the PlayStation Vita coming on December 17, we had the opportunity to sample the upcoming launch title Ridge Racer. At the same time, we managed to sit alongside Cellius producer Hideo Teramoto and got to find out what racing and Ridge Racer fans can expect in only a few short months.

New Ridge Racer = New Console Launch.

There are three aspects that Hideo pointed out that he hopes people notice upon playing Ridge Racer. First are the visuals. Thanks to the OLED screen of the Vita, the game absolutely "pops" thanks to the vibrant graphics in the courses you will race on and the cars in which you will do so. Even at this relatively early stage of development, Ridge Racer on the Vita retains the look and feel of previous games in the series and at times looks absolutely gorgeous with stunning vistas and fast turns. The visuals for the cars, both your own and your oppositions', featured a lot of details, and racing fans can expect that even without currently knowing specifics, there will be a large number of different car options at your disposal.

The second aspect is sound. They really want to take advantage of the audio power of the Vita by offering a unique, yet Ridge Racer-familiar, soundtrack. On top of that, they want to ensure that the audible noise from the various automobiles immerses the racer. When you tap the nitrous button, you clearly hear the extra power your engine gets, so expect to hear other noises that should add to the core experience.

The last aspect is online. While they aren't ready to get into specifics at this moment, the hope is to offer quite a worldwide experience. They anticipate that once the Vita is available everywhere that racers from across the globe will be able to challenge each other in a number of different modes. What this means exactly is unclear, but they do plan to get into the specifics closer to launch in Japan.

Continuing to talk about other features that fans can look forward to, they were unable to go into specifics. As with any other Ridge Racer title, we should anticipate a similar number of cars and tracks, but the exact number is not ready to be made public. In regard to the touch features of the Vita, the only touch function currently available was being able to tap the front screen to commence the demo. When asked about what additional features will use these functions, they could not tell me, but they are fully expecting that you will be able to drive by touching the various touch pads and that the interface will most certainly make use of these capabilities.

When asked about what they have found most challenging when making a Ridge Racer game, we were told it was ensuring that the game is ready for launch. Hideo has been developing Ridge Racer games since the PlayStation 2 era and knows how hard it can be to release a game at the same time as the console. Thankfully, though, he and his team have found that the Vita has been the easiest to work with, and he is very confident that Ridge Racer for the Vita will be ready in December and that fans of the series will be pleased with the final product.

Ridge Racer for the Vita should take full advantage of the hardware.

Our time with Ridge Racer was brief. The single course available took close to five minutes to complete but was very challenging thanks to its tight turns and powerful opposition. Again, fans of the series should be able to pick this up and automatically feel right at home. Ridge Racer for the Vita is expected to launch alongside the PlayStation Vita this December in Japan and should also launch alongside it when it finally comes everywhere else.

Discussion

26 comments
BC20FLY
BC20FLY

Already better than that reboot unbounded

Smithers2286
Smithers2286

@killeracer0210 Because I read all gaming news, and I'm an avid gamer. Just because the Vita doesn't interest me doesn't mean it doesn't pertain to me. I think it's every gamers right to express their concerns on what is going to extend the gaming industry.

fanirama
fanirama

to killeracer0210 - so you're saying you should only comment if you like the Vita? By your own logic, you didn't like Smithers2286's comment, then why did you comment on his comment?

killeracer0210
killeracer0210

@Smithers2286 if u don't like it then why did u comment it for?

hazuki
hazuki

Considering the ps3 fanboys still say 'oh, its only taking 60% of its powah!', i'd expect ridge racer vita isn't taking all of its power. But! on a better note, games looking good. The psp, ps3, and 360 games were actually quite excellent. A bit repetitive, since the mechanic hasn't changed since the original psp release, but still solid games.

GodGundamNT1
GodGundamNT1

I'm definetly buying a PlayStation Vita and Ridge Racer on launch day. I am a master Ridge Racer player, those little punky girls that complain about Ridge Racer just suck at arcade style racers.

blacktorn
blacktorn

Never been a big fan of ridge racer,the original had alot going for it back in the ps1 days but there hasn't been a great ridge racer game to stand the series out from other racing games.

Yinzer21
Yinzer21

Riiiiiiiiiiidge Racer!!!!

Hanzoadam
Hanzoadam

I'm so Happy this is actually Ridge Racer and not that Unbound rubbish

Mariner32
Mariner32

"Ridge Racer for Vita should take full advantage of the hardware"? When has a launch title taken full advantage of the hardware... OT: I might check this game out but I'm still holding out hope for Crisis Core on Vita.

StJerK
StJerK

damn that looks nice.

PumpkinBoogie
PumpkinBoogie

@Virtual_Erkan, Ah dammit man, you beat to sayin' that! But that caption is funny as hell (and true, too). :lol:

Nergil
Nergil

I'll wait for a racer on the vita I'm more interested in...it looks nice though...but like Hig1134 said below me, there will be better games on vita when it launches.

Smithers2286
Smithers2286

The Vita will likely bomb. I will wait for a couple of price drops before purchasing, which is what I should've done with the PSP. Now my PSP is just a paper weight.

Hig1134
Hig1134

There will be better games on Vita when it launches. I think I'll pass on this.

iowastate
iowastate

every Ridge Racer game was good some were great - we should expect good things from this

Virtual_Erkan
Virtual_Erkan

New Ridge Racer = New Console...LOL I gotta agree with this

benz1980i
benz1980i

"Even at this relatively early stage of development, Ridge Racer on the Vita retains the look and feel of previous games in the series." Ahhh "relatively early stage"???? The game is coming out December 17.

Kratos_Kills
Kratos_Kills

after R4 i think RR was over... handhelds are good to play new ones though.

King-gamer
King-gamer

It's Ridge Racer! Riiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiidge Racer!!!