MCV looks at Knack – a retro platformer only possible on the PlayStation 4.
Knack releases alongside the PS4 on November 29th.
Knack is set in a world taken over by goblins. Humanity turns to Knack – a creature built from ancient relics who can absorb objects into his body – to tackle the threat.
Using this ability, the titular hero goes from being three-foot to a towering 30-foot colossus – in this form he can pick up cars and smash through buildings. He can also shrink down to fit into smaller spaces as Stealth Knack.
Knack also gains special powers from absorbing certain objects such as ice or transparent parts – though these can only be used for short periods of time.
This is a platformer with a rather simple moveset – to start, Knack can only jump and use a three punch combo. He also has a combo meter – if the hero damages enemies eight times without being hurt, his attacks get more powerful.
The settings vary from cities to underground caves. Hidden rooms are scattered throughout the world – these contain randomised treasure that can be put together as gadgets. Players can see which of their friends have found the rooms. Crystal Relics hidden in the world also allow fans to replay the game as new characters with different sets of skills.
A two-player co-operative mode is included – friends can play together for as long as they want with drop-in/drop-out gameplay.
The title is directed by PS4 creator Mark Cerny and was the first game to be shown off on the new hardware in February. Cerny has been involved with PlayStation for a long time and worked on classics such as Jak and Daxter.
KNACK is uniquely one ofthe PlayStation 4 launch titles that has absolute mass appeal. The various modes in thegame mean it’s simple enough for kids, but if you play it on hard it’s a big challenge for even the most coregamers. It’s been likened to games like Crash Bandicoot so will have a nostalgic appeal for day one pre- order customers, but it also serves as a good option for those wanting family-friendly games. The most impressive part of Knack is the living, breathing main character built out of five thousand parts and driven by a custom physics simulation. The physics required for such an impressive creation are only possible from the richness and horsepower of the PS4.