Video game review: Down becomes up in Sony Japan's Vita debut

Game Informer MagazineJune 21, 2012 

Originally planned as a PlayStation 3 title, "Gravity Rush" has finally found its way to the Vita (despite missing the system's launch window). With an intriguing gravity mechanic and relative lack of gimmicky motion controls, Sony's Japan Studio has created one of the more enjoyable early titles on the mobile gaming system.

You play as a young girl named Kat, and the game doesn't waste much time in introducing you to the unique gift she possesses. Thanks to the aid of a mystical cat named Dusty, she's able to bend gravity to her will, allowing her to travel the airborne city of Hekseville with ease. Utilizing the R button to shift gravity (changing which direction is "down"), Kat is free to collect hidden gems and take out hostile monsters. Most of these baddies feature specific weak spots, and you shift gravity until you have just the right angle for a flying kick. This makes for some challenging combat scenarios, but it also makes the very act of navigating the city enjoyable.

As you progress, the 21 episodes do a good job of mixing up the action. You may find yourself fighting a constant stream of monsters in one episode, followed by a platforming-heavy section that limits the use of your gravity powers in the next. The hidden gems you collect along the way are used to upgrade Kat's health, increase the length of time she can manipulate gravity or make her attacks more deadly.

While Kat's gravity-shifting powers are the star of the show in "Gravity Rush", the game's storyline struggles to maintain focus. Characters are constantly introduced and dismissed throughout the narrative, leaving you wondering who's important and who's disposable. Despite this, the upgrade system and gravity mechanic kept me engaged throughout Kat's adventure.

Concept: Guide the protagonist Kat through a gravity-bending adventure.

Graphics: "Gravity Rush's" anime-like art style suits the game perfectly.

Sound: Poppy and upbeat tunes accompany you throughout the city of Hekseville.

Playability: While occasionally disorienting, the gravity mechanic is a lot of fun to play with.

Entertainment: It may not feature constant jaw-dropping moments, but the game remains entertaining throughout.

Replay Value: Moderate

The Bottom Line: 8/10

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