The Full Auto series has produced two lackluster console games that at least had a hook to them: When things didn't go your way, you could rewind time a bit and attempt to get it right the second time around. Full Auto 2: Battlelines is now available on the PSP, but it doesn't have that hook to it. Without the ability to rewind time, which, granted, never really worked well in the first place, this PSP game is just a generic-looking and poor-playing combat racing game that has very little appeal to it.
The game opens with a series of text-filled screens that talk about a weather computer gone awry, and how if you're the best combat racer, you can take control of that computer and rule the world, or something. It's convoluted at best and doesn't really matter at any point after that. From there, you're dropped into a menu with different parts of the world to visit. Each part has a series of races and events associated with it, and by completing the objectives in these events, you unlock new items and events.
Winning a race is rarely your goal, as most of the game is focused on destruction. You can select different cars and outfit them with two weapons. From the start, you're given access to a machine gun, minirockets, and mines. The PSP's triggers are used to fire your two weapons, while the face buttons handle gas, brake, and turbo. Your goals change from level to level, but most of them require you to eliminate a set number of enemies, while others require you to blow up specific targets, random objects, or oncoming traffic. You must complete every objective to proceed. After completing an area's races, you'll be able to go into an arena level for more-direct combat. This turns the game into a bad Twisted Metal-style combat game. It's bad because the cars don't handle well enough to make the rapid turns you need to make in an open arena. When you're done abusing yourself in the single-player, you can bring the thrill-less gameplay of Full Auto 2 to a group in the multiplayer mode. Four players can play, and the game does support game sharing. None of it is any fun.
Visually, the game is drab, but at least it moves quickly. You get a decent sense of speed out of the cars in the race mode. For a game that's so focused on blowing things up, you'd think it'd have better explosions. It's difficult to tell what's going on out on the track, and when you do see things blow up, they're really unimpressive. Large hamburger stands and other buildings fall apart in a very unspectacular way. One of the things that Full Auto got right on consoles was its explosions, and this version has none of that, either. The soundtrack is decent, though, and the explosions and gunfire sound effects come across just fine.
Overall, this is a generic, poor-playing combat racing game that isn't deep enough to please even diehard fans of the genre. While it isn't aggressively broken, there's nothing in Full Auto 2 that makes it a particularly appealing game.