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    AngryBob's Katamari Damacy (PS2)

    [February 21, 2008 02:19:01 AM]
    GAMEPLAY

    This play session I noticed that although the game comes with a multi-player mode, it is actually more fun to just pass off the controller in single-player. I don't think this is a game that lends itself well to competitive gamepley; when I see a big object on my friend's screen, I want to root for him to collect the object, not try to impede his progress. The game is just too fun and silly to take any kind of competition seriously.

    The single-player campaign has a really nice flow because the objects you roll up just keep getting bigger and bigger as the levels progress. I started out rolling up thumbtacks and legos, and now I'm rolling up cars and houses. It really makes me want to progress in the game because I am really curious what the biggest objects in the game are going to be. I think this is a great example of a game that may not have had the biggest budget, and certainly doesn't have the best graphics, but the designers still find ways to make the player feel constantly impressed because of the way the challenges are structured.

    DESIGN

    The core gameplay mechanic in Katamari is very innovative; I can't think of another game where the core mechanic is rolling up objects. I think the mechanic succeeds because there are always constant small goals the player is trying to achieve, like getting big enough to roll up an interesting object or the barrier to a new area. The core mechanic provides a very natural way of segmenting the levels based on your progression. In first-person shooters the player occasionally finds doors that will not open until they have killed every enemy in the room. This is an unnatural way to segment the level because it doesn't seem to make sense. But Katamary's segmentation based on rolling up the barriers to entering new areas seems very natural.

    Another thing Katamary does well is set and stick to a consistent tone. Although the game always has a surreal feel to it, it also has a light and silly feel that keeps the game fun. Every level sticks very faithfully to this tone. I think the designers realized that the core mechanic of the game is somewhat silly and nonsensical, and so decided to make the story, characters and levels the same way to keep consistency.
    read comments (1) read comments - add a comment Add comment
    [February 20, 2008 10:47:01 PM]
    SUMMARY

    Katamari Damacy is a game where the player controls a tiny intergalactic prince who is rolling a sticky ball, or katamari, around various parts of the world in an attempt to stick as many things to the ball as possible in a limited amount of time. The primary mode of the game is single-player, but it also has a multi-player mode.

    GAMEPLAY

    Katamari Damacy is a weird, weird game. It is obvious that the game was translated to English rather poorly; it almost seems to be intentionally poor at points. The story is utterly ridiculous; basically the King of the Cosmos (god?) destroys all the stars in the universe on a drunken or possible just insane binge, and as his son the player must roll up items to make replacement stars. The crazy story, characters and levels actually manage to create a fun and funny mood, especially if the game is played with friends. I think the game does a really good job at being charmingly odd without ever crossing into jarringly odd.

    The gameplay is simple but incredibly fun. Basically as you roll up items the Katamari grows in size. Items are different sizes, and if your Katamari is smaller than an item it is trying to roll up, you simply bounce off. However, if you roll up items much smaller than your Katamari you don't grow fast enough, so you have to constantly be rolling up items that aren't too small and aren't too big. The interesting thing about the gameplay is that the player is always setting small goals for themselves inside a level. I might see something funny like a bear balancing on a ball, and decide that I want to grow big enough to roll up that bear.
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    Status

    AngryBob's Katamari Damacy (PS2)

    Current Status: Playing

    GameLog started on: Wednesday 20 February, 2008

    Opinion
    AngryBob's opinion and rating for this game

    No comment, yet.

    Rating (out of 5):starstarstarstarstar

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