Resistance: Burning Skies

PS Vita

The Resistance franchise is one that has been woefully underrated on the PS3, often overlooked for supposedly sexier titles like COD or Killzone.

The truth of the matter is though, those that have played it have stuck with the series, as it offers a retro story line with an enjoyable sci-fi twist. And although original developer Insomniac has passed this portable version over to Nihilistic, it still manages to do the franchise proud.

The one thing you can say about the alien race that is the Chimera is that they're persistent. Throughout the whole franchise they've been trying their damndest to wipe out silly little humans from the face of the Earth. But as the title suggests, they are often met with a certain amount of resistance.

Stepping up to take on an entire alien race this time is fire fighter Tom Riley; Tom's slightly miffed, understandably, that this invasion has gotten between himself and his wife and daughter. So he goes about making the Chimera pay.

boom game reviews - Resistance: Burning Skies
When will these aliens learn to use the damn door!!!

Although the Vita now has that essential left thumb stick nubbins, which admittedly makes shooters a real pleasure to play on the fledgling system, it suffers somewhat from other annoying control issues. The main culprit is the touch screen.

Initially, the idea of putting controls for grenades on the screen appears to be a good one. A finger touches the grenade icon and then flicks it in the direction you want it to go. In the heat of battle however, the grenade is usually thrown anywhere other than the direction you want it to go.

You also have to touch the screen for the secondary use of your weapon; again, whilst attempting to aim at the enemy and then touch the screen for use of another weapon, it starts to feel as if you don't quite have enough fingers and thumbs to do the campaign justice.

Don't expect to do much running in the game either; sure, the game's not an Olympic tie-in, but sometimes you need to distance yourself in a jiffy from your enemy. Good luck doing that here. You can either attempt to tap the rear screen twice, or push down on the directional pad. Both feel extremely unnatural to do, and are far from comfortable either.

But these are tiny little quibbles in the grand scheme of things. The game is further proof that you can squeeze a near PS3 quality game into this handy little unit. The graphics impress on a regular basis; not only can there be a fair number of baddies on screen at any given time, but the detail given to them especially many of the end of level bosses wouldn't look out of place on a console version of the game.

There's a nice selection in the weaponry available too. Old favourites sit alongside a few new ones, making for well-balanced variety on offer. Picking up the right ammo for the weapon you're currently using can be a pain, but it means that you can't just rely on just the one.

Yes, the levels are on the linear side, but they are rendered well and have a remarkable amount of detail to them. And with around ten hours of campaign, there's quite a nice chunk of portable gaming available.

Sadly there's little by way of replay value though. The only collectables are cubes that allow you to upgrade your arsenal, and that's about it.

But just like its console cousin, the Vita version does contain a fairly robust multiplayer mode, which features all the usual suspects like death-matches and whatnot. It may not have the same depth as a console version, but is still enjoyable to play considering it's in the palm of your hands.

Nihilistic have proved that there's still life in this franchise yet and have managed a truly immersive shooter for the Vita. What's more, it proves that the system could easily handle a Call of Duty title, which is surely the kind of AAA title that the Vita needs. But until then, you'll find that Resistance puts up a good fight.

four out of five