Perhaps the grand plan was to create something akin to Activision's Skylanders, where a brand transcends a mere game. Well, thereís no chance of that happening now because Sonyís closed up bigBIG Studios - and thatís a shame because Little Deviants is, despite the character design, a rather fun little mini-game festival thatís perfect for the PlayStation Vita.
Portable gaming was made for quick-fire gameplay just like this, and Little Deviants does it with a visual flair and creative design that harks back to the classic PlayStation days where everything was happy and cartoony and bright. None of this generationís realistic grey-and-brown nonsense.
Its story says it all - you control a five-blob team of Deviants (each with mental-looking faces) who have crash-landed on the Whoman world (geddit?) after failing to escape an attack by the evil robot Botz. As each of the Deviants - Goopher, Pyruss, Frostal, Blobber and Nucleor - you have to rebuild the rocketship by completing a variety of different challenges. Cue primary colours.
As a result of the emphasis on eclectic control schemes, you get a variety of different experiences - mostly positive ones. Botz Invasion, for example, plays a lot like Face Raiders on the Nintendo 3DS. You have to move the Vita around in an augmented reality space, protecting flying Deviants from abduction by shooting at incoming Botz.
The gyro sensor is used in the majority of the games in Little Deviants. Cloud Rush is a skydiving stage that sees you tilting the console to position yourself and fall through point-scoring hoops. Other uses include rolling around Marble Madness-style stages within a time limit, using the Vita as a steering wheel during a survival race and navigating a maze collecting points while avoiding enemies.
Perhaps more intuitive are the Shack Shover and Rotten Rumble stages. The former works a bit like Whack-a-Mole, only you have to hit the Botz enemies from behind (so if theyíre facing towards you, you need to tap them on the rear touch pad) when they appear and avoid the innocents. The latter is exceptionally fun, as youíre using both touch surfaces to pinch and fling Deviants around to batter zombies to death.
For all the stages that are entertaining to play, there are one or two that fall down a bit - and this is largely due to the developer having ambitions that ultimately couldnít quite be fulfilled in reality. One such level uses the microphone and asks you to use high, medium and low pitch singing (or speaking) to smash bottles heading your way. Unfortunately, the game gets confused as to what is considered a high and low pitch, and so you end up vibrating your voice in all kinds of different tones and end up looking like a bit of a tit.
After the first couple of worlds, the mini-games start to repeat themselves too. Thankfully, many of these happen to be duplicates of the more entertaining games - the same premise, but different environments. And despite these few drawbacks, as a whole Little Deviants is a title that really plays to the Vitaís strengths - the gyro sensor is very responsive, and makes playing the tilt-based games a joy to play.
A variety of collectibles - strange block-headed pussy cats called Moggers, Gallery pictures and downloadable Near gifts - add a bit of replay value alongside the simple score-attack. A very adequate package for £20, and an interesting set of games thatís perfect for on-the-go gaming. If you want a game that takes advantage of every kind of input control the Vita has to offer, in a fun arcade setting, then Little Deviants should be on your wish list.
+ Takes full advantage of the PlayStation Vita
+ A lot of fun - youíll be replaying quite a few of these games
+ Great level of creativity in the games
- Repeating mini-games
- Some of these games must have sounded better on paper
- Leaderboards are your only interaction with other players
SPOnG Score: 7 / 10
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