Developer: Supermassive Games
Publisher: Sony Computer Entertainment
Release Date: September 13th
Format: Download (Move controllers required)
Players: 1-2 (Local)
Tumble is nothing like I expected it to be. Seriously, I just figured that this was going to be all about placing blocks here and there, with maybe… maybe some Jenga sort of mini-game thrown in to the mix. Well I can definitely say that I was thoroughly impressed with what Tumble brings to PSN, and not only as a demo for the Move controller.
Once starting the game I was immediately drawn in by the visuals, I guess I am a sucker for the minimalistic clean look. You can easily tell, “Hey, that is a piece of wood” or “Yep, that’s some Styrofoam.” Everything has a sharp, glossy look and the lighting really makes things pop. Even the menu presentation is slick, using a grid system from games like Wipeout. Unlocking new grids, there are 13 in total for the single player, is done by receiving medals in the stages of the game. There are your standard gold, silver, bronze for doing what is asked of you, but there are also other medals for doing certain goals, like making a sequence or reaching a target. These extra challenges, while not necessary to unlock all the grids, do add some replay value to the game. I still go back to some of the destruction challenges and try to get the Home Run medal.
Speaking of destruction challenges, there are a lot of different gameplay modes. My personal favorite would have to be the gravity challenges that are available near the end game, but I also liked the laser levels. In the laser levels, you have to place blocks so that you guide a laser beam into a light bulb. You are given different mirror pieces, along with colored glass so that you can change the color of the light you are directing. These can be very challenging especially if you are going for gold. While different gameplay modes are nice this game is all about blocks. So you would expect for there to be numerous types for you to choose from. For instance in some levels you are giving sticky blocks that are made of what looks like gelatin. You can stick any object in the game to them, so you can get insanely creative with your tower construction using these blocks. If you hover your cursor over a block, at any time, the properties of it will be displayed on screen. This really helps when you are building the base of a tower, as you will want non-slippery heavy object there.
You can have fun playing by yourself, with one or two Move controllers, but it really gets entertaining when you play multiplayer. There are different modes, taken from throughout the game, that you can play with a friend (duh). The vast majority of the modes can be played with one controller, but there are a few that need both players to have a Move in hand. You can do some really douchey things to your friends while playing, like setting the tower to fall as soon as it goes to their turn, a personal favorite tactic of mine. You also don’t really need much space to play this with two players, unlike something like Sports Champions. If you get tired of knocking each other’s towers over, you can always hop into single player and have a friend help you out.
You may have noticed I haven’t talked much about how the Move controls. That is because they are so simple I don’t think it needs much explaining. It is a great demo for showing off the Move’s one-to-one capabilities. You have total control over a block at all time, it is very precise. The calibration process only takes a second, and it is only need to be performed once, but you can recenter the pointer at any time by pressing the circle button. I only ran into a few issues with the controls, the operation of the camera in certain levels, laser ones in particular, can be a little frustrating. Also due to how I had the Eye set up moving my controller too low would have the on-screen controller freak out a little. But it is nothing that will really take away from your playing experience, and it certainly won’t be the reason why you can’t pass a level.
Tumble is a great title that really shows what the Move can do. There is enough variety in both gameplay modes and block types that everytime you play a new level it feels fresh. This is a game that every Move owner should check out.
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