A little after the release of the Playstation Move, Sony released Playstation Move Heroes. While many people were excited to see this crossover, it turned out the game was more of a showcase of what the Move could do. Having learned their lesson, Little Deviants was included for free with the First Edition Bundle and available at launch. With a central focus on just what the Vita can do, will it dazzle gamers or will it suffer the same fate as Playstation Move Heroes? Let’s check out what’s Hot and what’s Not with Little Deviants.
Interesting and Varied Ideas
Unlike Playstation Move Heroes, Little Deviants is more focused on different implementations. Roughly 20 of the 30 missions are different, though many of them have similar mechanics. Each mission tries to focus on its own mechanic. Some might focus on the gyroscope and another might be all about the back touch screen. Overall, it makes the game feel less like a tech demo and more like collection of mini games.
The game starts off with the “little deviants” trying to escape these robotic people named Botz. The Botz shoot down your ship and you encounter some human like people known as Whomans. Not thrilled with this outcome, the Botz come down to summon zombies or Dead ‘Uns. This is where the opening move ends and you can start “story mode”, though there isn’t really a story. Every mission has a set up video, although nothing tells you a coherent story. Some things like the Moggers (Cats) you can collect seem to go unexplained. Thankfully, there is a final showdown although the ending doesn’t add much.
Every mini game is focused on the gyroscope, voice and touchscreens. None of the 30 mini games use a button (except for the triggers), thumbstick, or D-pad. This by default makes Little Deviants less portable than most titles out there. Additionally, it makes many missions very annoying if you’re uninterested in playing a certain way.
Most of the games focus on the back touchscreen. Many of which are highly annoying because of that. For instance, “Tower of Boing” is a mini game similar to Arkanoid, where you move a platform around to prevent your deviant from falling. While this game logically should use the front screen, you’re sadly stuck trying to prevent failure from the back. Another annoying example are the shover games. In these you must push Botz out of a window with the touchscreens. Most of Botz require back presses, but you must watch out for deviants and Whomans. Even on paper this sounds pretty annoying as it’s extremely easy to accidently tap the wrong spot.
With this being said. the gyroscope works very well with many enjoyable games. The Vita can quite accurately tell placement, which makes these missions fun. With this in mind, you must also get in a position where the Vita says its level. If you’re off level, then expect issues moving in certain directions. This can ultimately make the task impossible to perform.
It’s not uncommon for mini games to have harsh tasks, but getting gold in Little Deviants is extremely difficult. Most gold amounts are near perfection and the games are far from that. Don’t get me wrong, it’s certainly possible, although highly stressful. To make matters worse, there are a number of poor elements that attribute to the difficulty.
The first shortcoming is how there is always a limit. Every game has a set number of stages and other missions have a time limit. While combating with the poor controls, expect a vast number of attempts to achieve all gold.
Most games you should achieve bronze on your first attempt. This will unlock a new stage and allow you to progress though the “story” mode. You should unlock every stage in around three hours, but there’s not much to do after this.
Sure you can continue to get trophies or higher ranks, but many of the games won’t be experiences you want to relive. Additionally, unless you’re a fan of constantly trying to beat scores on a leaderboard, you’re not going to have much of a future with this game. This is definitely something to consider before buying.
Little Deviants is certainly a great tech demo, although I can’t fathom a game using features like swipe different directions on both touch screens. With so many of the games being unenjoyable and extremely difficult, it’s hard to recommend Little Deviants to others. Considering Welcome Park does a far better job and is included with the Vita for free, there’s little need for Little Deviants. With this being said, it is a fantastic showcase of what the Vita is capable of. Unless you want to see what might be in the future, there really isn’t any reason to play Little Deviants.
[Editor’s Note: Little Deviants was reviewed on the PlayStation Vita.]Little Deviants Review,