I have to admit to having been slightly worried about Need for Speed: Most Wanted on the PS Vita. Even though Criterion were developing this pocket sized version of the game, part of me still thought that something somewhere would be compromised, well it seems like I had nothing to worry about after all. Good old Criterion.
Quite how Criterion has managed to cram the console version of Need for Speed: Most Wanted onto the Vita is beyond me, but everything is here. All the cars, police chases, jumps and races are included, as are the various billboards and gates which are spread throughout the city to smash through. To make things even more impressive, Criterion has also included the same Autolog features included in the console version, while you can also take part in a slightly cut down online multiplayer which includes four racers instead of eight.
All of the above means that the Easy Drive menu is completely intact, including features such as Autolog Recommends, the ability to mod your cars and the option to jump straight into any new cars you have found. In addition, Vita even has it's own exclusive events which you can take part in using any of the cars within the game. Criterion has even implemented some of Vita's unique features into the game, allowing you to swipe between event types on the map using the touchpanel on the back of the Vita. While you can also pinch the front touch screen to zoom in and out of the very same map.
Given that Most Wanted connects to the Autolog, if you own the PS3 version, then any points you have earned here will also show on the Vita version, along with any times you have recorded. Although the game doesn't keep track of cars found in the PS3 version or carry over any of the rewards you have won, the fact that you have the speed points means that you can jump straight into Most Wanted races and continue to build speed points for both versions. Also, if you've previously won any races on the PS3, then on the Vita version (and vice-versa) you'll be able to jump straight into them instead of having to set the destination and drive there. It's slightly frustrating to know that with a little tweak Cross-Saves could probably be implemented, however it's still great to be able to continue to build speed points and challenge those in the leader board above you.
So what's been compromised then? I have to say not a lot. I've seen plenty of references to there being less environmental traffic and while this is true to an extent, it's no-where near as bad as I was expecting. There are still plenty of cars for you to smash into and you will. Another area which is also slightly different are the graphics, this is probably the place where you will spot the difference between the console and handheld version, however it still looks absolutely fantastic as you can see from the included screeshots.
I didn't really want to repeat myself in this review, hence the reason for the 'Byte Sized' tag. If you want to know all about Need for Speed: Most Wanted then you can read our full review of the PS3 version here. Just be safe in the knowledge that buying the PS Vita version will not result in disappointment. This is so hot that it may very well burn a hole in your pocket.
- Fairview City in your pocket
- Exclusive races
- Feature packed
- Still looks fantastic
- Graphics run at slightly lower resolution