VVVVVV Review

So I recently picked up my PS Vita again. It had been a while since I last played on my Vita, so I decided to just reset the whole thing and start afresh, and when I was browsing through the PlayStation Store I came across VVVVVV.

I’ve owned VVVVVV for a while but I’ve never actually given it a real play, I even own it on Steam, and I don’t think I’ve ever installed it. Something compelled me to give it a real try, and because it was so small I could play it whilst I waited for Wipeout 2048 to download. Needless to say, I forgot all about Wipeout.

I never really considered VVVVVV to be much fun, purely based off its graphics. I know, I shouldn’t ever judge a book by its cover, a good game isn’t measured by how good the graphics are, yes I’m as bad as Hitler. But hear me out.

Story

You play as Captain Viridian aboard Space Station 2. At the outset of the game you and your crew run into trouble and must evacuate ship via the teleporter, but things go awry. The crew is sent to different locations across a new dimension and you must find them and return to the ship.

Gameplay

You can move in all directions but are limited to where you can move. Basic motion consists of left and right movements and the only way to travel up or down is to reverse the polarity of the dimension, which inverts your character allowing you to walk along the ceiling, or walk off edges to fall down to the screen below. This is the game’s primary mechanic.

As you travel through the VVVVVV dimension you come across terminals with information about what has caused the dimensional interference, and the locations of the crew. Also scattered throughout the map are twenty shiny trinkets which can be returned to the ship.

The level design is amazing and requires a lot of trial and error to complete some of the simplest of levels. I honestly spent several hours trying to complete one section that spanned across several segments, just to get the shiny trinket which wasn’t necessary to complete the game. Just beware of the elephant, that’s all I can say.

Graphics

If you’re an idiot like me, you will pass up this game based off its graphics alone. Luckily I played it on a whim and really enjoyed it and I implore that you own this game, or not, you should play it. The graphics don’t seem like much at first glance but they really compliment the game and add to its charm, although some scenes can be quite jarring. I don’t recommend playing this game if you suffer from photosensitive Epilepsy as some scenes have a lot of rapid color changing and motions.

Sound

There isn’t much in the line of audio in VVVVVV, and that matches its aesthetic. It’s designed to look like an Atari style game, and it’s lack of sound effects and music compliments it, but holds it back at the same time.

It’s a rare sight to see me playing a game with the audio turned down, and this was one of those rare occasions. The sound and music is fun at first but becomes monotonous very quickly. The soundtrack when listened to away from the game is good, but while you’re playing it all blurs into one long song and before you know it you’re questioning how long you’ve been playing for, and it turns out that it hasn’t been long.

Final thoughts

I was blown away by how fun VVVVVV was to play, and I eventually found the graphics charming. It was a little addictive in all honesty. The level design is fun, busy and challenging, and it really compliments the game as a whole. It’s only major setback is its sound in my opinion. There are tons of respawn points throughout the levels, which is a godsend due to the challenges that VVVVVV throws at you.

There isn’t much more I can say other than picking it up, it’s relatively cheap depending on what platform you’re playing, but the price shouldn’t be more than £5. It’s definitely worth a play.

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