GDC: Loco Roco Hands-on
We have the full scoop on Sony's other quirky, rolling/collecting title...
Loco Roco from Sony has been getting a lot of attention since its unveiling for its bizarrely cute (and very un-Sony) 2D art style, but Modojo can now confirm that there's actually a solid game underneath cutesy, stylish visuals.
Gamers play as... well to be honest I'm not exactly sure what you play as, since the game isn't localized yet. You basically play as a cute malleable orange blob, with eyes. As you travel through the levels you grow bigger with each flower blossom you collect, allowing you to jump higher, and just giving you more mobility in general. Early on you encounter a space that's too small to squeeze through given your ever-growing size but a simple tap of the circle button splits you up into many tiny cute orange balls, instead of one big one. Holding circle then sucks all your individual pieces back together.
The circle button is actually the only face button the game uses - everything else is controlled solely with L and R. At first it feels weird and counterintuitive, but I had gotten the hang of it after just five minutes or so. You tilt the level with L and R, allowing you to roll around. Holding down both buttons allows you to jump - the longer they're held, the higher the jump.
The experience was really fun (so much so that I went through the whole demo twice), despite these basic controls. Using the tilt and holding L and R allows you to build up momentum and make some big jumps. When you hit the opposite wall your little guy splats into it with some surprisingly satisfying pysics.
The second half of the demo was a snow-themed area, which allowed these physics and the malleable nature of your little personified... thing to really shine through. You'll pick up speed on the ice and slide all around the level, up and down hills, down chutes, and through the air.
Loco Roco was extremely charming, and has a great feel to it. This short GDC taste left me wanting more. It's currently due for a Q3 launch in the U.S.