Skip to main content

BattleZone review

Hovering tanks, powerful weapons, and sexy visuals somehow add up to a mediocre game.

The intuitive control scheme is marred by sluggish response. We guess commanding a hovertank would require a bit of patience in real life, but this is ridiculous. Inertia, unfortunately, is not your friend; after blasting the nitro boost rockets, your usually pokey tank is barely controllable and you often end up careening into a wall or other obstacle. It doesn't help that the tanks turn at the rate of a fly trapped in molasses, so spinning to counter a burst of speed or to confront an enemy is an overly lengthy process.

You can customize your tank, to a degree. First, you choose a country to represent from a list of eight, and that determines your tank's special ability (USA tanks have powerful attacks; German tanks have enhanced armor; Italian tanks can teleport, and so on). You can choose from three weight classes for your tank, which affect its agility and firepower. Each tank has two weapons, selectable from a list, and each can have up to three "tweaks," like a health recharger, improved weapon damage, or better faster nitro boost. The game only comes with eight battlefields, but you can customize two others with a tool available at the Web site.

Battles involve two to four tanks, in modes including deathmatch, team deathmatch, capture the flag, capture and hold, and others. The single-player tournament mode is short enough to blow through in four hours or so, so the value of this game lies in its ad-hoc multiplayer. If you have a few friends with PSPs, you might enjoy BattleZone, but if you're a recluse, you won't get your money's worth.

More info

DescriptionIf you buy one hovering tank action-shooter this Holiday season, make sure it isn't this one.
US censor rating"Everyone 10+"
UK censor rating""
Release date1 January 1970 (US), 1 January 1970 (UK)