- Game: Tearaway
- Release Date: November 22, 2013
- Publisher: Sony Computer Entertainment Europe
- Developer: Media Molecule
- Genre: Platformer
- Platform: PlayStation Vita
From the studio that brought us the Little Big Planet series comes Tearaway, a game about a messenger, a strange world, and most importantly: You. In Tearaway you play as an envelope who turns into a being named Iota or Atoi, depending on whether you choose to play as a male or female, who has a very important message to deliver. In the beginning of the game he/she sees a shining face in the sun, which happens to be yours thanks to Tearaway’s use of the Vita’s front camera, and sets off on a journey to deliver a letter to you.
You the player are called “The You” throughout the game and you help to guide you little envelope friend through hordes of Scraps (the game’s main enemies) to your location in the sky so that he/she can deliver this important letter. The adventure is totally shaped around what you chose to do. There are plenty of side objectives and hidden collectibles for you to take your time and find, or you can blast through the game like a rocket with target. You make your own choices and these choices may or may not affect the outcome of the game.
Tearaway features gameplay that utilizes almost all of the Vita’s features such as the front and rear cameras, both touch screens, the motion sensor and voice recognition. These features are all used in contemporary ways. For example there are objects and characters throughout the game that appear white until you take an in-game photo of them and bring them to life, pictures can also be taken of yourself and the environment around you in reality. You can also attack enemies with your finger by using the rear touch screen in designated areas or tilt the device to open up new pathways to explore. Tearaway also hosts plenty of platforming and adventuring in ways that do not involve the Vita’s unique features.
It’s all woven together so that none of it feels like a gimmick or overused in any way. Throughout the game you will gain new abilities for Iota or Atoi which keep the gameplay fresh and exciting. There are various types of enemies that appear throughout the game which keep you on your toes, no two Scrap encounters are alike. Items may also acquired at points in the game which can be used to defeat enemies or progress through the environment. All in all Tearaway presents a very innovating and crisp gameplay experience. The game feels fun, exciting and generally enjoyable to play.
Media Molecule has made a name in the gaming industry that is synonymous with creativity and fun, Tearaway exemplifies that standard. The game features a catchy soundtrack full of whimsical themes as well as some great sound effects throughout the environment. The world you play in full of color and character, making for a beautifully amusing setting for you to explore and trek about in. Tearaway has a very cartoonish style to it so I do not feel as if high-end graphics would really matter. The Vita is a great medium for this game as far as graphics go and honestly the game looks great. The characters are likable, the narrative is refreshing, and the end game is absolutely astonishing. Tearaway has made a name for itself as one of the first true Vita games and it deserves that title in its entirety.