Switch to: Deutsch
Short word of advice: You might find some European PSN codes in this article.
Velocity Ultra(Isaac, it)
At first glance, Velocity Ultra looks like a typical vertical-scrolling shooter. However, it doesn’t take long for the game to show how different it really is.
As a remake of FuturLab’s PlayStation minis title Velocity, Velocity Ultra retains what made the original so great, while also including enough new features for returning fans. This includes online leaderboards and updated graphics. There are even a trophies (including a Platinum) if you’re into that sort of thing.
The main gimmick that makes Velocity Ultra so unique is the ability to teleport. Your ship has the ability to warp anywhere on screen to avoid obstacles and enemies. To keep this from making the game too easy, Velocity Ultra throws new challenges at you constantly, which put your teleporting skills to the test. Add in bombs, boosting and telepods, which allow you to return to previous parts of the level, and you have a game that doesn’t pull its punches.
Thankfully, while later levels too get tougher, the fact that levels are fairly short means that you won’t be stuck replaying large parts of the game if you keep making mistakes. This also makes it perfect for gaming on the go, allowing you to clear a level or two whenever you’re free.
Velcity Ultra is a perfect fit for the Vita, in part due to its portability, but also because the controls are perfect for this type of game. The Vita’s analogue sticks allow for precise movement, meaning that the only one to blame for mistakes is the player. There’s also no forced use of features like motion controls and the back touch pad, which is nice.
For those that are new to the series, there’s a lot of content for you to enjoy. Returning fans that pick this up will find that Velocity Ultra has improved what was already a great game, with improved graphics, controls and added replayability
StarDrone Extreme(Isaac, it)
StarDrone Extreme is the perfect example of a game that is easy to understand, but hard to master. The controls are easy to pick up and the levels are fairly simple at the beginning. However, the only way you will make it through that game is by mastering both the movement of your ship and the types of obstacles you face.
The Vita version of StarDrone is nearly unchanged from the PlayStation 3 original, with a few cross-platform features thrown in. You still control your ship by latching on to nodes, with this being the only way to control it after the initial launch. Thankfully, the controls in this portable version are far better than on PS3. While the Move Controller did offer a good level of control, the Vita’s touchscreen is a much preferred way of manoeuvring your ship.
This is great, because you need to be precise when completing objectives. Whether collecting items or defeating enemies, you’ll most likely find yourself replaying some of the later levels. The difficulty really ramps up further on, which is why the touchscreen is great, though important parts of the screen can be obscured by your fingers.
StarDrone Extreme packs in a crazy amount of content, especially considering that you get both versions for just €4.99. Thanks to the improved controls the Extreme version is the best StarDrone currently available.
OMG HD Zombies!(Patrick/olp, translation by Merlin/ms)
The goal of OMG HD Zombies! is quite simple: Just wipe the board of all those pesky undeads! Although simple in theory, this gets quite complicated since you are only allowed to fire a certain amount of shots in each of nearly 200 levels. Chainreactions which allow you to clear more enemies than just one is the key for success and, eventually a good score.
Undead civilians aren’t your only enemies whom you will face in OMG HD-Z, not even the military was spared and thus you will also face heavily armed personnel. The gruesome horde can put up quite a struggle since they are still using their armaments, which results in a spray of bullets that is, under certain circumstances, able to take out nearby zombies. Another type of undead, the bloater, leaves the game while exploding in a cloud of guts and blood, thus ruining the day of zombies around him. Runners on the other side have the tendency to go nuts, running like hell while taking out some of your foes. Zappers erect electrified barriers after getting shot, which aids your hunt.
Levels are getting more and more complex while really revealing the meat (pun intended!) and strategic framework towards the end. Managing wayfinding, Explosives and potential shortcuts gets elemental. The often times spectacular Effects which can be admired after combos mostly appear by pure chance, though.
There is enough motivation and variety present while playing OMG HD Zombies!, which is particularly interesting since you are only able to gun down zombies with a sniper rifle while being completly immobile. You can upgrade your trusty weapon in several ways by increasing its penetration or magazine capacity. Upgrading Zombies is also possible by increasing the explosion radius of the disgusting bloater and all the other good stuff. Like other games of this caliber, obtaining the best possible score and rating will be reason for coming back, though the actual process of clearing all levels with perfect ratings is a short one. The levels themselves are pleasantly short, though allowing for unlimited time regarding your choices which makes this game perfect for short sessions while waiting at the bus stop. A neat but mostly basic story which grazes nearly every established zombie cliché is setting the tone while being told in comic strips. These can be read perfectly by swiping on the Vita’s front touch, just like in Gravity Rush.
Comparing this version to the PS minis OMG HD Zombies! yields results like more levels, enemy types, comics, upgrades and revamped visuals, online leaderboards which can be filtered between worldwide/friends and 12 Trophies (without a Platinum one).
Playing OMG HD Zombies! without knowing the original minis game OMG-Z is a welcome breeze for puzzle-nuts and is certainly worth a look. Upgrades are a motivating element and OMG HD-Z seems to be the first game in which it is fun to improve your own prey just to see them tear your enemies a new one. Groundbreaking and varied Gameplay can´t be expected from this title, though. On another note, the Vita version disappoints by featuring antiquated graphics. Controlling by using touch features is also less precise than using the physical stick. All in all OMG HD Zombies! is an extensive puzzle game featuring B-Movie charms, a healthy amount of individualisation options and glaring graphical problems as well as a disappointig variety gameplay wise.
Oh my port, you might think, but we’re planning on doing a third part of our PS Vita Port Special. Don’t give up hope if you support other platforms as we will cover a few Nintendo 3DS games soon. Thanks for your attention and we’re looking forward to your feedback. Which Vita ports do you like to play? Let us know in the comments below.
We captured the screenshots of Velocity Ultra and OMG HD-Z with our review copies.