Developer: SCE London
With so few titles taking advantage of the PSP camera attachment, you’d be forgiven for forgetting it existed. That would be a shame, as it’s a taste of the upcoming PS Vita’s augmented reality features.
This EyePet game has evolved from a PlayStation Eye title to allow you to better interact with the environment as you move the device around your room. Using the camera and the supplied card, the augmented reality system displays the EyePet creature in the real world. Sure, it’s very child-orientated, but imagine you’d seen this when you were eight? It would have been mind-blowing.
There are lots of customisation options available, including, hats, jackets and fur styling. Only young children are going to get any real joy from this side of the game.
The game is a mix of minigames and exploration. Without using the camera attachment, you guide a floating ship through 2D environments, collecting coins, outfits and toy parts to build your minigame collection. Coins are used to upgrade the ship with exploration aids like diggers, lights, radars and so on. The presentation of this mode is a little bland, but serviceable for the hour or two you’ll be there. The main annoyances are the constant interruptions and unskippable voice-overs. It's surprising that so much of the game is set aside for exploration; you'd think there would be more of a focus on camera-orientated gameplay.
The six minigames do all use the camera’s augmented reality though. The card transforms into castles, sheep pens, desert islands and target ranges. Most games involve moving a cursor to for your EyePet to follow and in-turn guide something, be it sheep into a pen, crabs away from treasure, mice away from corn and so on. A collecting game has you hopping around a grid grabbing rings, but the controls are unresponsive and the game doesn’t take advantage of being able to move the PSP around the action. This would be a dull collection were it not for the final game, where you fire balloons at colour-specific targets. By moving the PSP around the card, you can look around and over the targets to get the best angle for your shot. 3DS owners will recognise the similarities to one of their free AR games. Sadly, it’s the only one of its kind in EyePet Adventures.
- Shooting game is excellent
- The real-world interaction will please kids
- Exciting future prospects
- General lack of content
- Minigames too samey
- Annoying voice-overs
The Short Version: The brevity of the game means anyone over the age of eight will quickly lose interest. However, the shooting game makes great use of the augmented reality and gives us hope for similar games on the Vita. For now, this is more of an interesting curiosity.