It may have been over looked, due to Sony's PS4 being released, but there is a game out there you all must play. That game is Tearaway which has bee developed by Media Molecule (otherwise known as the team behind the LittleBigPlanet series) for the PlayStation Vita.
The story is simple, yet beautiful. At the start of the game you get to choose your messenger (either iota or atoi which is dependent of what gender you choice) and his/her mission is to deliver a message to you (the player). It sounds simple, and it is really, but this game's execution is do extraordinarily well. What really brings you into the game is the use of the front and rear camera. By that small feature you actually become a character the story. You are well you. Throughout you are given opportunities to take photos of yourself, or of your surroundings, which are then plastered all over the level. It may not be a new idea and some may see this as a cheap trick but it really works because you (the player) are constantly been referred to in the narrative. That small detail is what changes this cheap trick into an important gameplay mechanic that I may not be fully appreciated until you complete the game.
The is one of many ways the game uses the Vita's unique features. But at no point did I feel using said features became a chore (which is unlike many Vita games). What this game does right is that it slowly introduces gameplay mechanics and features (to the point where you don't get bored nor does the game get repetitive). I have played a few Vita games and I feel this is a major area some developers get horrifically wrong. They should take note of how Media Molecule constructed their game as they have used nearly all, if not all, of the functionality offered by the Vita (which is something I will not ruin for you).
The functionality isn't even the best bit of the game. The style is phenomenal. The entire world is crafted out of paper; with folds, creases and crunchy sounds being heard with every step. It is an interesting idea that isn't as superficial as other game's stylistic choices. The style really affects the gameplay/story on a deeper level. You won't really appreciate the style choice until you get to those last few levels where you start to realise why the paper like design, combined with the Vita's functionality, was chosen. It is a stunningly beautiful little game that does more than look pleasing on the eye.
The level design clearly has its origins from Media Molecule's first ip (LittleBigPlanet). Each chapter has its own feel and look which you can add to. A big part of this game is creating your own tale which is done by either buying prepare shapes (via collecting confetti) or make your own (which some, anal, people may struggle/dislike). I often found myself channelling my inner child; creating all sorts of child like shapes and objects. It really gave me some sort of ownership and individuality to my story. Saying that the create mode does pull you out of the game. The transition from gameplay/story to work station wasn't very good and often felt a bit disjointed.
This game is a bit short and it doesn't have that amazing online infrastructure their other ip (LittleBigPlanet) had. I am not disappointed that this game doesn't have competitive multiplayer (as that certainly wouldn't have fitted with the ethos of the game) but I am a little disappointed to see a lack of sharing your experiences/creations as the game clearly suits it and often begs for it. It may be an oversight but it is a shame to see this in an almost perfect game.
Overal this game is phenomenal. I encourage any Vita owner to get this game and any future Vita owners to not forget it. Sadly, I feel this game will be overlooked by many since we have new hardware. I have always thought nothing could come close to The Last of Us for my game of the year. This game came bloody close. Well done Media Molecule for showing you really are a heavy weight in this industry.