Tales From Space: Mutant Blobs Attack Review (PS Vita)
There are only a few download only titles for any system that I really consider worth getting – it may just be because I’ve had to sift through so much crap on the iPhone App store to find something good that I became numb to downloaded games, but I haven’t given a download only title a shot in a good while. Imagine my surprise then, when I was given a code to Mutant Blobs Attack and I actually got to enjoy playing it. I didn’t have high expectations with the game effectively being a “budget” title – but boy am I glad that I was wrong.
Mutant Blobs Attack is basically a 2D version of Katamari, with some other bits thrown in for good measure. You start off as a small blob that has stowed away in a student’s backpack and is taken to the local college. From there, you move around and suck up anything smaller than you to increase your size – each level has a barrier that you have to reach a certain size in order to devour and pass on to the next. Life would be too easy though if all you did is roll around and eat things, so rest assured that there is a good deal more going on here.
There are plenty of traditional platformer elements here to make for a good game by themselves, but then the guys at Drinkbox just kept going adding more and more neat things. You’ll find things trying to kill you all over the place, and as you get to higher levels you will be seeing more and more puzzles that require you to think, and not just devour everything in your way. To start off with though, you’ll just be rolling, jumping, and eating until you’re used to how that stuff works. Then they add the ability to rocket around (I wish you could use that everywhere!) which is a heck of a lot of fun – your little blob of death flies through the air with the greatest of ease. After that, the puzzles start getting harder and harder but they never are insurmountable, especially if you are used to games like this. Puzzles where you have to touch a wheel or a lever or something of the like, and then move it to make it useful for your little blob buddy. These puzzles can get a little frustrating at times when the touch screen doesn’t seem to respond right (and then you realize it is you own finger not hitting things right).
Each of the game’s six “worlds” (college, town, badlands, metropolis, army base, and moon) have three plus levels, and then an extra bonus level thrown in for good measure. This bonus level basically throws the blob into and old school labyrinth that uses the PS Vita’s gyroscope. Now I had one of these wooden toys as a kid (you know, they have two knobs to control the tray and you use a metal marble to navigate a maze littered with Swiss cheese like holes), and I was always horrible at it – thankfully the version in Mutant Blobs Attack is much more forgiving though. Even if you do completely such at the labyrinth boards though, they are bonus levels, so you don’t need to get them done (though they add some length to the game).
Length is a bit of a concern here though, and this is one of the main reasons I have issues with download only titles. The entirety of Mutant Blobs Attack can be beaten in less than three hours. Granted, you can keep going back to each level to ensure you get the highest score possible, and that you find all of the other little blobs out there – but even that can only add so much. I still think this is a game that everyone owning a PS Vita should own, but there are times that I related it to a mobile game because of the length. That aside, the charm and just pure fun factor of the game can easily propel it past that small shortcoming. The only other real issue that I had was with some of the physics not working as they should, but that was a few and far between happening, and in reality what I blame on bad physics could easily be my bad playing.
One of the things that really helps Mutant Blobs Attack to stand out from the crowd is the brilliant background on every board. Rather than just slapping some new images down and being done with it, the Drinkbox crew has gone out of their way to ensure that every world has a different feel to it entirely. The one part that had me laughing out loud was in the college level when the blob emerges from a keg labeled “hipster juice”, and then goes about consuming the video game equivalent of the red Solo cup. That combined with passed out people in the background caused me to reminisce on some of my own days in college.
The Bottom Line: Even though storage space can be a major concern for some on the PS Vita, Mutant Blobs Attack is a game that everyone should own – its quirky visuals and fun play style are exactly what you would expect in a system launch game, and the parts that take advantage of the PS Vita’s features are integrated seamlessly.
- Extremely fun and easy to pick up and play, you don’t need to be a gaming savant
- The art style is just simply a treat, and the things that happen in the backgrounds are usually comical
- Some of the puzzles in this are better though out than some puzzles in full retail games
- The game is incredibly short, even for its small price tag
- The labyrinth levels get to be tiring if you aren’t very good at them
- Sometimes the touch screen puzzle parts aren’t as responsive as you might expect them to be
Tales From Space: Mutant Blobs Attacs is a download only title for the PS Vita, and can be bought through the PSN Store for $7.99