Playstation-Move-Heroes---PS3-Review Playstation Move Heroes - PS3 Review

   11/04/2011 at 08:15       Phil May       7 COMMENTS. - Score 1/5
 - Playstation Move Heroes, Nihilistic, Sony, Playstation 3, Move Controller

Imagine the bounteous day when not one but three new games appeared featuring three of the best loved heroic pairings the Playstation consoles have ever played host to. Sly Cooper, back from the dead and ready to burgle. Ratchet and Clank - well, yeah OK they never really went away, fair enough - and a new Jak and Daxter game surely by now long overdue?

Well Playstation Move Heroes does indeed feature ALL of those characters, dragged kicking and screaming through a blue swirly thing in space to fight shoulder to shoulder in a single game for the first time. With a setup like that, surely Nihilistic Software couldn't possibly fail to produce an engaging and absolutely essential gaming experience could they?

They could. And how.

You see, something went wrong in the knocking of heads while the developers were thrashing out exactly how to do justice to three sets of iconic characters such as the aforementioned. Someone, some nasty little N64-owning fanboy crept into the meeting, kept whispering "Super Smash Brothers" in between all the hubbub and rhubarb and some complete drekzoid thought it would be a smashing idea to try and create the PS3 equivalent to Nintendo's most puzzling success story.

Only it's not even that good (and believe me I use the word "good" loosely because Smash Brothers is the sort of game I cross four lane motorways blindfolded to avoid). They've stripped out the combat. They've stripped out the comedy and what's left is an odd experiment in trying to create a Move-enabled party game that isn't really fun enough to wheel out at even the most emo-infested gathering of cheese-football-heads.

Describing the gameplay in Playstation Move Heroes is a bit like trying to randomly determine the flavour of your next girlfriend. Lick of a 9V battery with a hint of Guinness perhaps? Anchovies distilled with rice wine vinegar? You see, it's tough but not as tough as trying to wring an ounce of fun out of this title.

At the risk of upsetting the Sony Defence Force I'll try and placate them a little first. The Playstation 3 plays host to some of the best and most innovative games of this generation. Also, for what it's worth, The Playstation Move Controller works a metric ton better than Kinect does. No lag, ace AR-style graphics mapping to the controller, and one or two delicious little games available for it. But in the rush to provide fodder for the starving millions who adopted the controller early, tat like this is being rushed out to market. The sort of tat that worked well enough on the Wii where the majority market for the console are confused Sun readers, virile randy grandmothers looking for a better outlet for their lustful energies, or the under 7s.

Put simply, we expect better from the PS3.

Though to be fair to Playstation Move Heroes, I'm not the intented market. Random party games with a motion-sensing flavour are no country for old men, embittered by the countless disappointments dished up during the gaming year. So because of that it's probably fair to detail the game a little and see if it would be the sort of thing that would float your boat, now I've got my rant out of the way.

So the setup is that some nasty omnipotent force has gathered together Sly Cooper (and his brainbox sidekick Bentley), Ratchet and his robotic buddy Clank, and Jak and his fuzzball buddy Daxter for a series of challenges ranging across the various gameworlds these characters inhabit. Nihilistic have done a good job of representing each particular world and the different stylings you'll have previously encountered in each character's game series.

Graphics are fairly good, in fact it's a little upsetting to see such loving attention paid to representing these iconic game characters in a game that falls well short of the mark. Achingly you'd love to see a proper this-gen version of Jak and Daxter, or a brand spanking new Sly Cooper outing to compliment the recent HD re-release of the original Sly trilogy. We're already doing well for Ratchet and Clank stuff so there's not much mileage in cooing over their likenesses in this.

Choosing a character to attack each challenge is key to how a level can be solved. The idea is to liberate a hapless bunch of lifeforms locked up on each level, using your chosen character's particular skills. Ranged weapons are backed up by melee sidearms that fans will recognise from each character's own games. The object is to bash, blitz and boomerang your way through each of the imprisoned lifeforms until they're all free and a level is clear.

Your progress is hampered by several evil lifeforms, again culled from the character's own gameworlds. Heavily armed robots, slime creatures and weird flying things are all out to put you in the ground.

Using the Move controller is fairly intuitive and it's the one part of the game that stands out as having a fair amount of polish applied. Controls are highlighted on screen and it's a case of matching the prompted moves with your controller in order to succeed.

Local and online co-op modes allow two (or more) characters to fight shoulder to shoulder to clear a level (either as a main character or a sidekick). Progress and unlockable goodies can be gained once a particular game 'world' is clear. Unlockables range from new weapons and armour to new abilities, again mostly culled from each character's own mythos.

That's pretty much it in a nutshell. As I've previously said, I'm not the intended market for this game quite obviously - and it is a game that would come alive with a bunch of co-op players working through each level. It's just...well it's the core gameplay. It's so inherently dull that it would be difficult to sum up any enthusiasm for it, even if you'd eaten ten packets of fruit mentos and guzzled a couple of dozen litres of Dr Pepper. To their credit, Nihilistic were given a poisoned chalice in the first place and they did the best they could with it, but the aching feeling underpinning this game is that the effort might have been better spent if Sony had given Naughty Dog, Insomniac Games and Sucker Punch Studios a shedload of cash and sent them off to develop brand new games based on the original gameplay and characters, rather than getting Nihilistic to throw them together in a lacklustre minigame marathon like this.

(As a further footnote, how Sony has the gall to charge 40 quid for this on the PSN Store beggars belief).

User Comments:

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Sillothian - on 11/04/2011 at 16:11 wrote:
In your efforts to describe your utter disillusionment with the game you've actual forgotten to describe what the crap mini games entail ;-)

Not that it really matters as this title has been panned on every site. I've been waiting for Sony do a decent Move Starter pack bundle with a game, but this isn't it. I was massively surprised they didn't do one with Killzone 3.

evilashchris - on 11/04/2011 at 16:25 wrote:

peej - on 11/04/2011 at 17:43 wrote:
Sil, I did - it was probably extremely well hidden and brief but, well, that reflects the gameplay itself. As I said in the review the game basically (and I do emphasise the 'basic' there) entails running around, bashing or shooting at things using the Move controller to free weird little alien...things. Obviously without the luxury of a manual or much supporting bumpf (and not wishing to cheat by reaming through the very short and lacking-on-detail wikipedia pages on the game) it's a bit difficult to actually say that much more about the 'game'

Y'see, here's the basic problem. As ace as I think Sly Cooper is, and the small grains of respect I have for Jak, Daxter, Ratchet and Clank, they're really not all-conquering icons in the same way that their Nintendo counterparts are. If you slung together even a bunch of the least popular Nintendo game characters / icons of the past 10-20 years into a game that involved firing a square block at a round hole in a pixellated wall, it'd sell like hot cakes. Sony do not have that luxury with their 'brand icons' and it really shows in this.

Like Kinect, Move is going to suffer and continue to suffer during 2011 if this is the only sort of game we've got to look forward to. For Kinect it's fine and dandy because Microsoft won't really be able to do much more with the hardware for 'proper' game types but with Move it's a missed opportunity because the controller really does work for a lot of hardcore game types and functionality a lot better than Kinect does.

Other thing I neglected to mention in the review - this needs the Move secondary controller as it's a right royal pain in the arse using a Sixaxis to move and trigger shoulder button functions in conjunction with your Move wand.

NewYork - on 11/04/2011 at 17:44 wrote:
I don't think anyone expected this to be good.

DDevil - on 11/04/2011 at 22:15 wrote:
I like Smash Bros :-(

Ace Grace - on 12/04/2011 at 10:16 wrote:
I must have shit taste in games because I quite like it.

peej - on 12/04/2011 at 10:23 wrote:
I was a bit of a bastard about Smash Brothers in this review, but tbh I've never understood the appeal. Facing Yoshi off against Solid Snake just seems like some bizarre drug-fuelled mentalist idea. BUT I'm willing to concede that a confirmed billy no-mates would probably find anything that's purely multiplayer-fuelled a bit of a let down in whatever form it takes.

This though. No, this isn't even fit to lick the satin slippers of Smash Bros.

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Better late than never, eh Ror?
Khanivor - In response to: Battle Chasers: Nightwar Review - 284day(s) ago.
Enjoyed this, cheers!
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Looks who's back. Shady's back.
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