Wednesday, 22 January 2014

Game of the Week: OlliOlli [PS Vita]

OlliOlli is a new score-based skateboarding game. It has been produced and developed exclusively for the PS Vita by Roll7 who are best known for making IOS games for Apple Smartphones.

OlliOlli features fifty 2D side-scrolling levels, in which players attempt to perform various combinations of skateboarding moves (from 250 well-known tricks) as perfectly as possible in order to beat the current high-score.

Each level has a unique set of goals for players to complete, which can include reaching basic high-score targets to more complicated challenges like collecting certain items on route, grinding along on specific objects, or even refraining from performing certain moves during combos etc.

One of the best (and most frustrating things) about OlliOlli is that the entire game operates on a simple one-life system. This means that rather than judging the speed at which players complete the chosen level, as in some skateboarding games, the main objective here is simply to complete the level whilst performing as many combinations of tricks as possible in order to boost your high-score. If you crash once anywhere in a level, it is Game Over and the level must be restarted from the beginning. This adds tons of replay value to the game.

As well as being awarded for trick combinations, a huge number of points are also awarded for perfect landings, with no points being given for so-called 'sloppy' landings. The game uses a very simple control method, with all of the basic moves being performed via combinations of the 'X' button and the left analog stick. However, learning to time the use of these two buttons effectively is essential in earning a respectable high-score.

It sounds complicated, but don't worry. The in-game tutorial will help novices to master all the basic skills and help them to perfect their landings at the same time. Furthermore, all of the levels in the game's Career Mode are instantly re-playable by touching the 'redo' button on the top left-hand corner of the screen

Once players have significantly mastered the timings and combos in Career Mode enough to create high-scores, they may wish to take part in The Daily Grind. This is a special mode, which changes every 24 hours.

In The Daily Grind, players are expected to test their skateboarding skills on a random level of the game. The Player's high-score is then uploaded to the game's Online Leaderboards. However, the one-life functionality of the main game is also present here. This means that although players may practice the level as many times as they wish before the 24 hours elapses, they only get one chance to perform the level for real.

After the level has been completed, (which occurs by selecting the 'Play for Real' option on the PS Vita touchscreen), the player's score will be automatically uploaded to the Online Leaderboards. Players will then have to wait a full 24 hours before they can take part in The Daily Grind again.

Completing levels successfully will unlock so-called 'Spots'. Players can then challenge other OlliOlli users across the world to achieve the best score on the Spots that they have discovered in career mode. The highest scorer in the Spot Leaderboards will become the King of the Spot.

Completing all levels in Career Mode and unlocking all available Spot locations will automatically unlock a more challenging mode of the game called RAD Mode.

 OlliOlli is a game that is easy-to-play but hard-to master. Priced at a mere £7.99 (or £6.39 for Playstation Plus members), OlliOlli will suit most budgets,whilst the hundreds of trick combinations and different gaming modes means that it is both addictive and engrossing. In conclusion, this is a title that is bound to keep the majority of gamers happy for many hours to come. Overall Rating: 10/10

OlliOlli is available to download now from the PS Store. 

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