Little Deviants is one of the titles that you may well be considering when buying the PlayStation Vita this February. It’s certainly a flagship title in that it’s probably the only game to use every one of the Vita’s unique features and in this respect we certainly wouldn’t bet against it being a success.
When you hear the words mini-game compilation, generally it’s best to just put the box down and turn away, however for Little Deviants we would definitely make an exception to this rule. Little Deviants is for all intents and purposes a collection of mini-games which takes what’s unique about the Vita and goes with it, however once you get into it, you’ll realise this is no bad thing.
The main story sees The Little Deviants, who are essentially a mischievous race of alien creatures, crash-land on a planet which is inhabited by the Whomans. Unfortunately the Deviants arch enemy, The Botz, have also followed them onto the planet and therefore your task is to fix the Little Deviants spaceship by getting through each of the 30 mini-games, while avoiding the Botz and collecting parts to your ship. To be honest, the story takes a backseat for most of the game, so you may not see much of it, other than a few cutscenes. Which is just as well since you will be far to busy with everything else this title has to offer.
Little Deviants really only consists of the Story Mode: although you can go back later and play any game you unlock. Although it does have the ability to check out the leaderboards, which consist of Global, Friends and PlayStation Near stats. You can also use Near to drop gifts, allowing players in your area to pick up the gift and play demo’s based on the levels shown.
As mentioned, the main part of the game is the Story Mode, in which you can play and unlock up to 30 mini-games. When you begin the Story Mode you are locked into one region (there are six regions, each with five mini-games) and as you progress through each of the games, you will unlock other regions, each of which increases the difficulty.
One of the first games you will play is known as Rolling Pastures, here you use the back touchpad to manipulate the landscape, allowing you to roll your Deviant throughout each level in order to find the keys to open a portal to the next level. As you roll, you are also required to collect score boosting stars and avoid the Botz. Each of the mini-games has a required score in order to unlock a new game and other items. The scores are split into three levels, Gold, Silver and Bronze. Doing the bare minimum and gaining a Bronze score, will allow you to collect a piece for your ship and also unlock a new game, while gaining Silver will unlock a new piece for the Gallery. Gaining Gold will give you the satisfaction that you have aced the level.
There are certainly a wide variety of games to played throughout each of the regions, all of which make use of features such as the touchscreen, rear touchpad, camera, mic and even the motion sensor. Games see you using the Vita like a steering wheel as you drive through levels, avoiding being eaten large robotic whale; using the camera Augmented Reality style as you try to shoot down the robots which are flying around your room or even Humming or Whistling into the mic as you try to break glass bottles before they smash your Deviant in the face.
The above are just a few examples, however there are other games which are just as fun, such as one of my personal favourites, City Shover; here you push the robots from a tower block as fast as you can after they are revealed by the opening windows; there is a twist, however, in that you need to avoid pushing citizens out while in your stride. There are also other elements involved here, in that as you play there is a clock ticking down, while the appearance of large stomper robots sees everything knocked out of the window if you don’t knock them out first. On the flip side there are clocks to collect, allowing you to boost your time, giving yourself a better chance of a high score.
Other games have you flip the Vita on it’s side, such as Hot Air Hero, which sees you in a hot air balloon, rubbing the back of the Vita to fire up the Deviant (and therefore the balloon) and rise it up into the air, with the aim of the game being to use the touchscreen to kill of the robotic birds, while collecting stars and patching up any punctures which appear along the way.
Stars are the main way to boost your score in the game, although even collecting all of these will still see you struggling to get anywhere near a Gold score. I’d imagine that most people will manage to complete the game with an all Bronze score and a few Silvers without too much trouble, however going for Gold will require a lot more dedication. The beauty of Little Deviants is that once you have completed the story, you can easily play through it again, allowing you to go for Gold and snap up any of the Moggers (Collectible cats which are hidden in each game) you missed along the way.
As far as presentation goes Little Deviants is certainly pleasing to the eye. It’s colourful, fun and varied enough to warrant it’s price tag. The game certainly doesn’t scream budget title, instead it provides enough tricks to justify it’s place in the Vita’s launch line-up.
Given that Little Deviants will launch with an RRP of around £25 and possibly even cheaper when purchased via PSN, we can’t find any reason for this game not to be part of your very own launch package. Not only does Little Deviants provide the sort of bit sized experience that it perfect for gaming on the go, but it also looks great and makes use of Vita’s features more than any other title we have tried so far.
Rating: GoodReview Policy(Version tested: PS Vita [import]
Little Deviants is released in February 2012 alongside the PS Vita. You can pre-order the game from ShopTo here.