Nearly three years later, Studio Liverpool finally returns to PSP with the next installment of the Wipeout franchise. Wipeout Pulse attempts to do the impossible: improve upon the formula they created with Pure. Undeniably, they have succeeded.
Pulse is a fantastic game, and we don't mind having to pay for more of it. However, is £3.49 a bit too much for you? How much will DLC cost when the game launches in America in a week?
Also available on the UK Store: Fade to Black (PS1), Theme Hospital (PS1), Motorhead (PS1)
Be warned, Wipeout Pulse can, and will, get dangerously fast. The speeds of Phantom and Zone are mind-shattering (could this iteration outdo every previous game in the series?). However, to really understand how exhilaratingly fast the game moves, one has to play in first person. Only then, will you really feel like you'll lose your lunch. Catch more videos, after the cut.
If you read our hands-on impressions, you'd know that we're in love with WipEout Pulse. Looks like IGN is quite enamored too -- and they have videos to show you. Unfortunately, these videos don't quite capture how intense the game really feels when it's in your hands. The silky smooth framerate adds a lot to the experience. New modes, like Elimination (our favorite), are a welcome addition to the franchise. And, the experience "loyalty" points you get after each race has us trying to grind for more unlockables. It's just a better game than Pure, and that's saying a lot.
Check out all of IGN's videos here.
Stay tuned for today's PSN updates to see if this exciting demo makes it way to our neck of the woods.
We're going to join the others that are going to play with this fun new tool -- even though we don't have the game yet! We're confident that a lot of PSP Fanboys are going to do the same.
Sony's been focusing a great deal on their upcoming early 2008 line-up today. Joining God of War: Chains of Olympus is another heavy-hitter for the system: Wipeout Pulse. Out friends in the UK will be able to enjoy Studio Liverpool's latest this week, but the rest of us will have to wait until early next year to get our hands on this futuristic racer.
With full support for Infrastructure multiplayer, Pulse is looking like more than a worthy follow-up to Pure (which remains, to this day, one of the best games on the system). Check out the new screenshots below:
If a picture can say a thousand words, what does a video say? Jeuxvideo has some incredible new videos of the game in motion, and it's clear how the visuals have been improved. The new lighting, the new HUD all look quite sexy. Add Infrastructure support, and you have a worthy successor to the already-incredible Wipeout Pure.
Check out another video at Jeuxvideo.
Wipeout is instantly recognizable to any fan of futuristic racing. It's gone through many changes since the original PS1 title, and Pure is easily the most refined game in the series so far. It's no surprise you'll be rushing through futuristic environments in a race to the goal. However, what you can do while on the tracks is what makes Wipeout so appealing. The weapons system in Pure is the best the franchise has offered. The varied effects of each weapon are devastating, but not overly so to make the game too combat-heavy. Targeting is much more intuitive than it ever has before, and players will find themselves scoring more hits than ever. Players must constantly watch out for their ship health, and this is one of Pure's most clever design choices: allowing players to absorb weapons to regain health. Instead of using a rocket, for example, you can absorb it and gain some of your health back. This forces players to think about their priorities every time they receive a weapon: to use, to save or to absorb?
Original Release Date: November 21, 1995
There's very little reason to pick up Wipeout from the PS Store, especially with Wipeout Pure already available on the console (at a budget price as well!). Regardless, the original PlayStation Wipeout still manages to entertain, withstanding the test of time. The presentation is certainly not as sleek as that found in Pure, but the easy-to-navigate menus and brisk load times (when disc acceleration is used) are quite appreciated. The game has aged well visually: the framerate is smooth and the art style does a lot to compensate for the lack of polygons. The draw distance might not be what players expect from a modern game, and in a game that moves this quickly, that can be a problem. On both the PSP and PS3, the game still looks quite nice, with the PS3's upscaling doing a miraculous job.
The controls are a bit too loose in this first iteration of the franchise, and hitting walls is unforgiving. However, with a pretty undemanding AI to compete against, the only racer you should really consider is yourself. That's a shame, considering it makes the plethora of weapons rather useless.
Ultimately, the game's true shortcoming is well ... how short it is. With so few tracks and ships to choose from, one can't help but think that $6 is the absolute most you should pay for this trip down memory lane. A solid game -- but there's far better options (at least for PSP owners).
Retro Review: 6.5
The original PSP Wipeout Pure remains one of the best games on the system, and Pulse looks to improve upon an already impressive foundation. This new trailer is unfortunately sized for this web window. However, go to GameTrailers, download the HD version and you'll see the game in the full visual splendor it deserves.