PlayStation All-Stars: Battle Royale Review (PS Vita)

This holiday season hasn’t been too good to the PlayStation Vita. While it wasn’t terrible, Assassin’s Creed III: Liberation wasn’t quite what we had hoped for. Call of Duty: Black Ops – Declassified is well… a complete disaster. PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale is the PS Vita’s last shot for glory ahead of Christmas.

Since it’s more of a tribute for PlayStation fans, it’s not quite a system seller in that regard. However, it does serve as a slap in the face to all other games who have tried to bring the console experience to the Vita, yet failed. And that’s because PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale is exactly the same as the PS3 version, through and through.

If anything, the PlayStation Vita version of PSASBR is superior, given the limitations of the Vita platform. And it’s just so pretty on the Vita’s OLED screen, especially during the LocoRoco stage, or PaRappa the Rapper‘s dojo. The colors just seem to pop right off the screen. The characters look and play no different than on its big brother, and online is interchangeable thanks to cross-play. Granted, the PS3 character models aren’t the most detailed I’ve seen, making the transition to the Vita that much smoother. Still, it’s a very impressive feat what the dev teams have accomplished here.

All of the same characters, moves, modes, backgrounds, and unlockables are available, and there is no compromise in quality. For more details on all of this, we ask you read our PS3 review of PlayStation All-Stars: Battle Royale, because really, it’s that similar, we’d just be reiterating the same text. Even playing online is just as lag-free.

Another benefit the PlayStation Vita version offers over the PS3, is portability. You can literally take the fight anywhere. You can even take it to a friend’s house, and use the Vita version as a controller for the PS3 version. The only difference is that a couple of the trigger buttons have been re-mapped to the touch screen. It doesn’t hurt the experience whatsoever, and you will barely notice once you get into the action.

Best of all, is that the PlayStation Vita version is free if you get the PS3 version. I’m sure you’d be hard-pressed to find many PlayStation Vita owners who don’t have a PS3, so it’s worth paying the $20 extra to get the PS3 copy, instantly entitling you to a digital version on the Vita. For the few people who only own the PS Vita, and not a PS3, the game is worthy of a lone purchase. Or just buy a PS3 already!

As good as the PS3 version is, it’s not as impressive as the Vita version, simply due to the fact that the PS All-Stars on the Vita so closely matches the experience of a home console—something I’ve never yet seen. It’s a technical marvel, and provides much hope for the PlayStation Vita which is an all-around excellent system, it’s just stumbled out of the gate and hasn’t yet had the software to help move units. PlayStation All-Stars: Battle Royale still isn’t that system seller that the Vita needs, but for those of you already owning a Vita, you’d have a difficult time finding a better game for it.

Read our review of PlayStation All-Stars: Battle Royale on the PlayStation 3>>

  • Portability earned it another half-point
  • Because it so closely resembles the PS3 version...
  • ...and is every bit as good
  • You may not even need to pay for the Vita version
  • Still lacking that depth and characters we really wanted.