Touch My Katamari (PS Vita) Review

Site Score
8.0
Good: Intuitive Controls, Lots to Unlock, There is a Future, Story
Bad: Déjà vu, Rear Touch
User Score
8.3
(4 votes)
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GD Star Rating
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The Vita has many diverse titles to pick from. Among the listings is the quirky puzzle game Touch My Katamari. With the last console game released two years ago, fans are getting restless for the next title. That’s where Touch My Katamari comes into play. By utilizing most of what the Vita has to offer, will it be successful or will it be ignored?

Find out the HOTs and NOTs in our review of Touch My Katamari.

HOT

Intuitive Controls
For a while, the number one PSP complaint had to do with the absence of a second thumbstick. The Vita addresses these complaints, but very few titles utilize it currently. However, it plays a pivotal role in Katamari. I am proud to say that the thumbsticks work fantastically, although they will take some getting used to.

Unlike other Katamari titles, you’re able to change the way the Katamari (ball) looks. Pinching the touch screen will make the ball tall, but thin and pushing away makes it short, but long. Simply poking the screen with two fingers will return it to normal. Additionally, these controls only work when two places are touched at once. This means that there will be very few mistakes, although they will happen. Mastering these elements are required to accomplishing everything in Touch My Katamari.

Besides this, you’re able to jump with the right trigger or move to the other side with the left trigger. These controls feel extremely natural, which makes the game very quick to learn. Out of all the Katamari titles, I think this is the most accessible. Once you get familiar with the mechanics, just about everything flows perfectly.

Lots to Unlock
Recently many games have dropped unlockable items and this is sad. The two other Vita games I’ve played were both fairly complete. However, Touch My Katamari has plenty of side tasks to increase playtime.

Like previous titles, there are cousins (other playable characters) that you can find. Cousins only seem to appear when you complete the stage once. This is true for almost every stage and most of them are reasonably hidden. You should find them within ten tries, which is great as a guide shouldn’t be required.

While you’re looking for cousins, there are also presents to find. These will unlock a costume item for your character. Contrary to cousins, these are extremely well hidden and might be missed after several attempts.

In addition to the aforementioned items, there’s also ten special items on every stage. Your mission is to only find these items, which is a far more rounded task than rolling up every item. Each item falls within its own tiering. Some are easy and others are in the most random places imaginable. Naturally, this really gets you to explore the world.

Finally, after each stage you will receive a ranking. Based off how many collectables you acquire, the size of your Katamari and stage task (X of an exact item type), you will get rewarded with candies. These can range from 10 to 200+ depending on what you accomplish. If you like your reward, then you can sweet talk the fan for several times more. Candies are like cash and can be used to level up, buy clothing for the king and music. Additionally, your highscores can be sent via Near and unlock additional prizes if you beat someone’s score.

There is a Future
Touch My Katamari will feature several DLC stages down the road. Why is this important in a review? Well unlike other games, Touch My Katamari has weird red people known as “fan spirits”. These spirits appear to be very rare, randomly spawning characters that you can collect. When you collect ten, you’re able to redeem them for one DLC stage. I was finding about two an hour, so five hours for a DLC level is a pretty sweet deal. If you’re not into collecting them, then you’re also free to buy them.

Story
After years of doing nothing, the King finds out he might not be as awesome as he thinks he is. This prompts him to summon the prince and give the cosmic belly a fine workout. From here the story becomes a third wall breaking adventure to please fans in the katamariverse. Admittedly, the story is pretty stupid, but the overall premise is extremely amusing.

NOT

Déjà vu
You don’t need to play Katamari religiously to feel like you’ve done this before. Many of the levels are extremely similar to past levels and some later stages appear to be same with a new layout. This might be acceptable in some cases, but many of the items sync too. As you progress, many unique items will be repeated a lot. This might be a girl who looks like tinkerbell appearing on several different stages or an oddly designed bank. In the end it makes the game feel somewhat tedious, which can lower your will to do everything.

Rear Touch
As mentioned earlier, the touch controls are great, but the rear touch pad is also enabled. Since the rear acts like the front, you’re going to have to make sure you don’t accidently mess with the Katamari. This addition feels poorly planned and being unable to disable it is just annoying.

VERDICT

Touch My Katamari is an extremely addictive title. Thanks to the quirky style, it is a great addition to your Vita collection. Naturally, there are some faults, but they don’t make the game unplayable. Overall, this is a great title and a great buy at $30. If you love puzzle games, then I strongly suggest you pick up Touch My Katamari.

[Editor’s Note: Touch My Katamari was reviewed on the PlayStation Vita. The game was provided to us by the publisher for review purposes.]

Touch My Katamari (PS Vita) Review, 8.3 out of 10 based on 4 ratings
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