MCV takes a look at Media Molecule's latest title, Tearaway, with its unique papercraft world and touchbased controls.
We detail the game's features and talk to Sony UK about its marketing for the title and the world it has created.
Tearaway is out November 22nd
Tearaway is the latest game from Guildford-based developer, Media Molecule, best known for its LittleBigPlanet series.
At E3 2013, the game was given the Best Handheld Game Games Critic Award.
The game sees fans accompanying either the male Iota or female Atoi, papercraft-inspired messengers with envelopes for heads. They are on a mission to deliver a very special message to the player.
Similar to Media Molecule’s previous work, Tearaway features a charming homemade design ethos – this time a world made of paper.
This new IP makes full use of the PS Vita’s features to merge the in game world and the real world – the front touch screen can be used to cut out artwork for characters, or open doors in the game.
The back touch pad can be used to manipulate the world. This can be anything from breaking through the floor of an area with the player’s fingers to take out bad guys, or reaching through to move platforms around for the messenger to traverse the level.
Both the front and back cameras are put to good use – through the front camera the player is visible, and acts as a goal for the messenger to reach, while the back camera can be used to generate skins for characters.
The Vita’s motion sensor is also used allowing players to tip and turn the game’s environments to their advantage.
The microphone can be used to affect the game world: players can blow to create a gust of wind that sends enemies flying away or shout to attack enemies with a special trumpet.
Over the next few months Sony is going to be running a TV, digital and print campaign to relaunch the PlayStation?Vita, highlighting the PlayStation 4 remote play. Tearaway is going to play a core role in this rebranding.
Through the summer, Sony sponsored The Simpsons, with Tearaway being a key part of this. More recently, Sony has been using the PS Vita to sponsor Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D and starting in November Tearaway is going to be the PS?Vita’s killer app and will get centre stage.
Sony promoted Tearaway at Eurogamer Expo, giving out thousands of branded headbands, as well as having a papercraft stand and papercraft challenges held on the stage. Sony also had a presence at the Virgin Media Games?Space.
Part of the print campaign is the inclusion of papercraft figures templates in magazines to be made, and then shared with the Tearaway community via PS?Access.
Tearaway shows off the unique functionality of the Vita, which is integral to the gameplay. This game wouldn’t be possible on any other format.
This allows the player to hold the game’s paper world and wield god-like powers upon it. The intention is to blur the lines of the real and virtual worlds - you can reach into the game through the touch pad and conversely the game can deliver you papercraft you can then make in the real world. Whilst it looks cute and is definitely a game kids will like, we actually see the main audience being core gamers, mainly as it’s something completely new.
Tearaway’s world is completely rendered as if it was actually paper. Media Molecule starts with a virtual flat sheet of paper and then tear and fold within the Vita to make everything.
To create such a unique world, Media Molecule turned to little known local folklore and half-forgotten stories, which inspired the world and the creatures in it – and even the music such as the Sogport sea shanty. Some of the towns such as Valleyfold and Sogport and are also very British.
If fans pre-order Tearaway they receive the Jukebox Pack, which contains Iota and Atoi avatars to be used on PlayStation Network. Also in this pack is a PlayStation Vita wallpaper as well as the soundtrack of the game complete with bonus track.
GAME also has exclusive pre-order content called the Special Delivery pack. In addition to the above, players will have access to an exclusive skin for the rideable pig in the game and a printable papercraft of the skin. The?retailer is also offering Iota and Atoi LittleBigPlanet character skins.