With games like Little Big Planet, Media Molecule have a track record of producing charming and fun platformers for the PS3. Tearaway is their first game for PS Vita, and so the question arises of whether this is as good as previous games. We got some hands-on time with the game, and we’ve say that it most certainly is.
What first strikes you is the art style. It’s very unique, with everything made in the style of papercraft/origami objects, making it surprisingly endearing. Tearaway has a colourful and vibrant world, and it really is nice to look at. This is backed up by entertaining gameplay. It’s a simple platformer, but one that works really well. The jumping puzzles are challenging but fun, and the objectives (eg. throw an apple into this cauldron) are equally entertaining. I did encounter some issues with camera angles, where you couldn’t quite see the angle at which to aim for a jump, but this wasn’t anything major.
The game truly shines when it embraces the Vita’s hardware. There’s great usage of the Vita’s rear touchpad (which you tap to bang drums, propelling your character into the air) and cameras (such as taking a picture of yourself and using it as the sun, Tellytubbies-style). These unique gameplay mechanics elevate the game to a really special level: adding interactivity without seeming gimmicky.
My only worry is that there won’t be enough ideas and gameplay developments to sustain a full-length story mode. But if Media Molecule have the creativity to keep the game fun as it progresses (and I’m confident that they do), Tearaway will be something really special indeed.