One of the only genres on the PSP that has shown any sort of success has been the racing genre, which has given us games like Burnout Legends and Need For Speed. Well now we have another different style racing game that tries to combine fast paced racing along side some other neat features. This allows for a more complex and deep racing experience that doesn’t just center solely on racing. The game is called GripShift and could it possibly compete with some of the other great racers on the market? Read our full review to find out!
I have obviously reviewed a lot of games, and there are times when it just seems like the same sort of racing games are being released year after year. When I heard GripShift was coming I must say that a part of me was actually excited about this game, because it seemed like the game was trying to be different. I am all for that sort of creativity, so GripShift not being just your every day racer was very intriguing in my eyes. But does GripShift have enough horsepower to really make it as a great racing title.
You begin in GripShift by picking one of the pre-made characters, all with varying personalities and styles. Once you have chosen your racer, then you must choose what they shall be driving. This of course means that you have to pick whichever you think suits your style of driving the best. From there you are off to some of the beginning courses, which are sort of introductory courses on how the game works.
One of the things the developers did differently with GripShift was to give each race multiple objectives, so not only do you need to win a race but you also need to collect certain objectives and solve different puzzles along the way. This means that you are usually going to race each course more then once in order to complete all of the objectives. GripShift does make playing the same level entertaining, because of the great sense of speed and some interesting puzzles that the developers have placed inside the game. Basically this game tries to give as many different looks as possible in order to gain people’s interest, and some of these work and others do not. For example some of the item gathering objectives (collect all the coins) and things like that get pretty old pretty fast. But the incredible sense of speed in the game and the interesting course designs are really actually quite enjoyable.
GripShift is a game that also includes a track editor, which to me was a smart idea, as the courses in this game includes loops and all sorts of crazy adventures. However I spent a lot of time with this track editor, and I found myself realizing that creating your own track just was never all that exciting. I’m left wondering why I should be spending hours creating my own courses when the actual race is over in a matter of minutes.
When I look at GripShift, I see an entertaining game that unfortunately feels sort of empty. The racing just feels kind of plain and doesn’t have enough depth nor horsepower to really grab your attention. In fact when I look at GripShift, I see a game that has some good aspects like the racing but some of the other aspects like the acting and puzzles just feel sort of dry and pointless.
One of the unique features of GripShift was the presentation, which to me was actually a pretty interesting decision on the developer’s part. They decided to go with a cartoony and light hearted approach that works well with the game’s approach to racing. With such fast cars and such blistering racing that the sort of "cutesy" presentation style worked well for this game.
When I look at GripShift I see a game that is as fast as the game moves. With the craziness that happens on screen, the developers did a fine job of making everything in the game look good with really no problems to speak of. This may not be the best looking racer on the market, but it has enough good stuff in it to make it still a good looking game, nonetheless.
GripShift is the type of game that had a lot of neat ideas and some of them actually turned out pretty good. But when you look at the game at a very broad sense, you will find that this is a game that had more potential then the actual end product. The racing in the game gets sort of repetitive after a while and the sense of doing flips and things like that just isn’t as exciting as it was in the beginning. The game does have multiplayer, but I found it to be sort of dry and uneventful.
GripShift is a game that not only has some good ideas it actually works with some of them as well. GripShift has some good qualities, and to be honest the actual game itself is fun, at the beginning at least. In the long run GripShift, is a game that has some rough edges with the main mode feels sort of dry and missing some key areas that would have made it a much better game. Unless you absolutely must be racing on your PSP, this game can be left as strictly a rental at best.
The owner and editor-in-chief of Darkstation.com. I've been apart of the website since 2002 and purchased the website in 2010. Owning and running Darkstation is a dream come true. I love video games and I love writing and talking about them even more.