Gravity Rush REVIEW
Release Date: 15 June 2012
Format: PS Vita
Imagine if Jean Pierre Jeunet had directed Dark City, thrown a bit of Cthulu Mythos into the mix and played fast and loose with the laws of physics – that’s Gravity Rush, the PS Vita’s first must-have game.
It stars blonde-haired, anime-eyed, amnesiac Kat and her actual cat Dusty, who gives her the ability to control gravity. Tap the right shoulder button and you’ll start float. Tap it again and you’ll hurtle towards the new centre of gravity, in whichever direction you might be facing, falling with (some) style. Kat has a pleasing rag doll feel to her movement, and the freedom offered by her power is the game’s big selling point, but it’s not the only one.
The Moebius-inspired production design and cel-shaded visuals are unremittingly dazzling. The original, mystery-laden story of destructive gravity storms, a city torn apart and invading inter-dimensional Nevi (gloopy black blobs of various shapes and sizes) gives you genuine drive and Kat herself is an enjoyable protagonist. Best of all it feels like a game built around the hardware, making full use of the touch screen, accelerometer and twin sticks.
There are a few problems, however. Navigating across vast distances using Kat’s power is a doddle, but more precise changes of direction require you to constantly stop and start, while Kat’s main attack – a kind of zero-g flying kick – can be frustratingly inaccurate. The story clocks in at just over 10 hours – a respectable length, but it does leave a handful of grating loose ends. With any luck they’ll be addressed in the upcoming DLC. Reward-laden mini-games and upgradeable abilities help extend the lifespan.
Refreshingly different, it’s probably the most charming game we’ve played all year. Jean Pierre Jeunet’s a shoe in for the movie adaptation.
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