Backlog: All That's Old Is New Again
Playing video games on a budget or balancing games with other hobbies can require sacrifices sometimes. Each of us here at Sasquatch has our preferences about where we play our games and sometimes that’s more objective and sometimes it’s simply a matter of dancing with the one who brung’ya. About this time last year an enhanced version of a PC freeware title was the talk of the gaming town on Xbox Live Arcade, a game called Spelunky. I was neither in a position to nor had a desire to buy an Xbox 360 to play an, albeit quite charming, indie title. Finally, my patience and frugality is rewarded as Spelunky comes to the PlayStation Network with cross-compatibility for PS3 and Vita.
I’d played the original on Mac but never quite grasped its full appeal. Well-made absolutely, but in a post-Super Meat Boy world a tough-as-nails 2D platformer isn't quite as original and refreshing a concept. The extra coat of polish however has done the title a world of good. The animation makes traps slightly easier to avoid, enemies easier to read. I still make mistakes but they feel more like my mistakes and not a fault of the game failing to communicate what I’m doing wrong.
The game plays like a dream on Vita as well. It is a perfect portable experience. My runs unfortunately rarely last more than ten or fifteen minutes and when by some stroke of luck I can put the game in sleep mode with little consequence.
The Vita has been the butt of quite a few jokes since its debut, and perhaps justifiably. It has been in a close contest with the Wii U for the title of gaming’s red-headed stepchild. The handheld is on something of an upswing though thanks to Sony securing more than a few indie titles to make either their debut or console debut on the Vita and it’s living-room-based siblings. Between the announcement of previous PC-only titles like Rogue Legacy, the reveal of brand-new titles such as Samurai Gunn and the promise remote-play holds when the PS4 debuts in November, I'm quite happy to be a PlayStation Vita owner. Sure it won’t play Pokémon, but it will play creative games unlike anything else on the market. - Tyler Martin