A Trippy-looking, Vita-centered Slap in Newton's Face
Sir Isaac Newton was the one who established that whatever goes up must come down. No exception. It is one of the fundamentals of the understanding of gravity. And just like everyone else, Kat, the protagonist of Gravity Rush, respects this. Unlike everyone else though, her "down" can be in any direction, not just towards the ground. If that's hard to understand then read on, for I shall explain in greater detail as we go along.
Gravity Rush begins with Kat finding herself within the floating city of Hekseville, her memory in complete shambles. As she tries to get her bearings, she comes across a strange black cat. Not long after, the cat does something cosmic, bestowing upon her the power to control gravity.
As the title implies, this newfound power of hers is the key gameplay mechanic at work in Gravity Rush, and it's easy to grasp. Gravity manipulation begins with a simple push of the R button, which will make Kat begin to float in place all zero-gravity like. You can then point her in any direction, be it up, down, left, right, or anywhere in between, with either the Vita's gyro controls or right analog stick, and once you do that, a quick press of the R button will send her "falling" in that direction. It works in a way that if you aim Kat at the side of a building (or any other vertical surface), she will land on it and walk on the side as if it was the ground.
With this power in hand, Kat makes her way throughout the many parts of Hekseville, and in the process she crosses paths with various friends and foes. As she goes along, she can accept various missions from the NPCs that inhabit the city, ranging from assignments that push the plot forward to side-quests that serve to flesh out the gameplay further.
Sooner or later, there will come times when Kat needs to put up a fight, as there are plenty of enemies in Gravity Rush, from mere thugs to strange creatures known as Nevi. While Kat can take them on with single-button combo attacks, she can also employ her gravity powers in battle. One example is the "gravity kick", which is pulled off by aiming Kat at an enemy while she is in her zero-gravity state and attacking as she falls towards them. Over time, she can gain new gravity abilities which she can also use in battle, like the ability to slide on the ground as if sliding down a slope, and the ability to create a gravity field that allows Kat to throw anything caught in the field. In an RPG-esque fashion, these abilities can also be leveled-up by various gems scattered throughout the city, enhancing them and making Kat into an all-around better fighter.
Gravity Rush has a lot going for it. Aside from its cool visual style and awesome-looking, gravity-bending gameplay, the game is serving to give the PlayStation Vita an experience that can't be… well… experienced elsewhere. And at this early point in the handheld's life, having such a title to call one's own is invaluable.
It also doesn't hurt that the game has already been getting excellent reviews following its Japanese release in February. I think it's safe to assume that a similarly-natured review will appear here on GameDynamo not long after Gravity Rush launches in North America on June 12. Stay tuned!
A writer, journalist, and aspiring storyteller, Peter Grimm has been gaming since the days of the Nintendo 64, and reporting on the goings-on in the World of Gaming since late 2011. His base of writing operations is located within the void between Here and There, or so he would have you think.
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