PlayStation Move Heroes Review
Game: PlayStation Move Heroes
Developer: Nihilistic Software
Publisher: Sony Computer Entertainment
Available on: PlayStation 3 only
Sony’s motion controller, the PlayStation Move, has been out for some time now, and whilst nobody could question the tech behind it, there hasn’t been a huge selection of titles to pick from. After the initial influx of launch titles it has received sporadic support, at least until Killzone 3 came along, with the additional Sharpshooter support.
Given that PlayStation Move Heroes contains three of the biggest Sony brand-names, it’s a surprise to see that it has received little or no publicity, but is this a reflection upon the game itself? Let’s find out!
STORY: Told through a simple introductory cut-scene, PlayStation Move Heroes shows each of the heroes (and their sidekicks) going about their daily heroic-style business until something strange happens. At the very moment that each of our heroes (Sly, Jak and Ratchet) are seemingly doomed, the world around them appears to pause, then suck them into some kind of wormhole, along with their sidekicks of course.
Emerging from the wormhole on the other side, they initially blame each other, wondering what the hell has happened! That is, until a strange alien creature appears. This creature informs them that they are to take part in a game show of epic proportions. Our heroes realise it might actually be a bit of fun, so agree, and after receiving their trusty weaponry back, they warp off to the arenas to embark on their quest to win the world’s first annual inter-universal hero games!
All is not as it may seem however, and as you might expect, the people running the game show aren’t as friendly as they might first appear. The biggest hint of all is that you are rescuing Whibbles from cages, or protecting them from robots. Yes, shock horror, there is a more dastardly scheme afoot!
GRAPHICS: Despite not being made by any of the original development teams behind Jak & Daxter, Sly Cooper, or Ratchet & Clank, the arenas for each of the mini-games on show are wonderfully rendered. Be it Paris from the Sly Cooper universe, Metropolis City from the Ratchet & Clank canon, or Haven City from the Jak & Daxter games, you could be forgiven for thinking the original teams had created the environments.
Special mention goes to Sly Cooper though, as this is his first true high-definition rendering, and seeing him (and Bentley) really does whet the appetite for Sly Cooper 4. The cut-scenes which tell the story are of an extremely high standard, as you would expect, given the cartoon like characters. There’s really nothing to complain about visually whatsoever.
SOUND: The original voice actors do seem to return though, in spectacular fashion, and the voiceover work is full of humour. Quips ahoy, you’ll never get bored of the game show host style voiceovers during gameplay. Musically the game is a little more forgettable, a traditional action-movie sounding score accompanies everything. This isn’t a huge slur against the title though, as PlayStation Move Heroes is all about the action, and the music is simply there, nothing more, nothing less. Other than that, the sound effects are nicely done, meaty thwacks and gunfire, explosions, it’s all exactly as you’d hope for.
GAMEPLAY: As the title suggests, PlayStation Move Heroes is a PlayStation Move only title. You will use the move controller to point and shoot, along with either the bog standard Sixaxis/DualShock 3 or the optional navigation controller, to move the character around the arena. This takes a little while to get used to, but once you do, it is nice and accurate as well as enjoyable.
Essentially, PlayStation Move Heroes is a series of mini-games. You have the standard shooting games, along with melee games that you would expect from any action platformer. But there is some additional fun, as you have a bowling mini game and a discus type game that follows the same simple principles as in Sport’s Champions, also for PlayStation Move.
If you want assistance whilst playing, you can have a friend play along with you, but all the second player seems to do is shoot things for you, which in some respects is similar to the two player experience in Super Mario Galaxy, only with some small additions. Using the face buttons, you can change the attack that the second player can utilize. Instead of just throwing crystals collected from the environment (and defeated enemies) you can also heal the main player, though in truth, the game isn’t really difficult enough to require this assistance very often. There are some other nice features though; for example, you can bash the end of the move controllers together for a huge explosion. The basis of a very strong co-op mode is present, but it just doesn’t quite go far enough.
To make matters worse, this is a completely offline experience, there is no way to play co-operatively unless you are sat in the same room. PlayStation Move Heroes feels aimed at a younger audience, so in that respect, the local co-op seems a good fit.
Overall then, the gameplay is quite good fun and after some practice, it utilizes the move controllers well. The mini games are very enjoyable to play and will put a smile on your face, though more co-op functions would make this title a lot more fun and probably have given it more legs. Once again though, the game most certainly feels aimed at a younger audience.
LONGEVITY: Containing 50 levels, there’s a fair bit to keep you going here. Along with the accompanying storyline, PlayStation Move Heroes has a decent length to it. Sadly however, the only real reasons to come back to the title once you’ve finished the main story arc are to get better scores, collect the hidden items in each area, or to unlock the trophies that are available. The very definiton of a pick up and play title, if you have a young family then it’s likely any children will want to play it more often than you do.
VERDICT: Taken at face value, PlayStation Move Heroes is an enjoyable experience to play and humourous throughout, but it does make you wonder as to why this title seems to have slipped under the radar. Clearly aimed at the younger generation, it won’t take the world by storm, but it will give you something to play with a smile on your face.
If you’re looking for an excuse to dust off the PlayStation Move controllers, you could most definitely do a lot worse than PlayStation Move Heroes, but at the same time this is yet another mini-game collection aimed at the casual gamer, and not the continuation in the more hardcore direction that Sony appeared to be heading towards.