Inside PlayStation Network – Calling all Cars

The digital delights of Sony’s scrumptious PlayStation Network service know no bounds. Aside from letting punters compete in online gaming, stream films, browse the Internet and more, its premier attraction rests in the copious supply of downloadable games ripe for the picking. From PSN exclusives to PSOne Classics, minis and plain old add-on content, Sony’s online space is chock full of goodies battling it out for your hard-earned digital dollars.

Welcome back to another installment of Inside PlayStation Network, where every Monday – Friday we’ll pluck a PSN release—be it new or old—and put it in the spotlight for a thorough dissection. Fancy getting a new PSN game but don’t know what one to plump for? Perhaps this feature will help. Didn’t realize that a game was available in your region until now? We’ve got you covered. Or, perhaps you were musing over what those lucky Japanese folk were tucking into over in the Land of the Rising Sun? You can be sure our coverage will extend to those rare regional exclusives as much as those firmly embedded on the public consciousness.

Today’s entry sees us buckling up for a spot of Calling all Cars.


Developer: Incognito Entertainment
Region(s) available: North America
Players: 1-4

Conceived by God of War father David Jaffe, Calling all Cars acts very much like a bite-sized offshoot of esteemed motor mash ‘em up, Twisted Metal. A fitting diagnosis perhaps, seeing as how Jaffe was also responsible for the cult classic car fest. Indeed, the premise holds a distinct sense of familiarity about it. Players view cel-shaded shenanigans from a 3rd person, bird eye perspective, with your overall objective being to chase down and apprehend a group of convicts who have absconded from prison. That’s easier said than done, however, as there’s also a band of other bounty hunters eager to get their mitts on the fleeing criminals. You’ll rake in points for capturing convicts, with the overall winner determined by who has nabbed the most points.

Baddies emerge from underground tunnels and stroll about the place, ripe for the picking. To snag a criminal, it’s a case of simply following the on-screen prompt to his location and ramming the poor bugger as hard as you can. This sends the unfortunate chap sky-bound, leaving him susceptible to a snagging. And if you want to be the one doing the capturing, you better hope you’re in the ‘green zone’ (that is, a reticule that determines if you’re able to pick up the prisoner – green means yes, red is a big fat no) or you won’t prove successful. Once you’ve acquired an escaped inmate, you have to plonk them down in one of six incarceration facilities. Any one gets the job done, but the riskier options allows you to gobble up more points. For example, the local cop shop will net you one point, while the Maximum Security Prison rewards you with three.

Naturally, your opponent’s are bound to bag a criminal at some point along the line – when this happens, your objectives change instantaneously. Here, you must reclaim a convict from your competitor’s grasp, either by smacking into them or utilizing some handy power-ups. These include weapons such as homing missiles, a whopping great mallet mounted attached to the front of your motor, or a handy magnet. The missile and the magnet both possess lock-on functionality, affording you an easier time in bagging your captured baddie. The mallet, meanwhile, boasts a considerable attack radius, so you don’t have to be as precise while using it. As you’d expect, Calling all Cars’ contention-heavy antics are perfectly suited to a multiplayer environment, and the game delivers the goods in this area by throwing up local four-player multiplayer. Needless to say, it’s perfect distraction while you eagerly await Jaffe’s anticipated PS3 Twisted Metal outing.

Join us again tomorrow as we once again take a butcher’s Inside PlayStation Network.