Minority Report: Playstation 2
Nick’s been playing a bunch of obscure classics, including the bizarre Mr Moskeeto
Maybe it’s because we’re British, but we’re pretty sure that summer is the worst of seasons. People get extremely excited only to be disappointed by weeks of drizzle, broken by a singular week of uncomfortable heat and humidity. Throughout the whole miserable ordeal, we are tormented by bugs, which give us nasty, itchy bites. All of this would be utterly irredeemable abuse by Mother Nature, were it not for the fact that such traumatic situations inspired the development of Mr Moskeeto, released on Eidos’ short-lived Fresh Games label.
Each stage places the titular bug in a room with a member of the Yamada family, whose blood you need to drink to survive for the winter. Whether it’s Kenichi, the goofy dad of the family, his more sensible wife Kaneyo or their teenage daughter Rena, the family member will quite happily bumble about and mind their own business, until you start to fly about the room and cause havoc. You can go straight for any exposed skin, or attempt to expose vulnerable areas by causing the person to move. This is achieved with the use of various objects, such as light switches and TV remotes. Once you land on a person, you can hit R3 and start rotating the right analogue stick to start drinking. While you drink their blood, you need to keep an eye on the speed at which you’re drinking it, and the overall stress level of your host (which may result in being swatted – an autokill). Fill up the necessary number of tanks from each extraction point and the level is over. This sounds simple, but we’ve not yet covered the obstacles to your blood-sucking exploits.
Environmental hazards include air conditioners to destabilise your flight, insecticides, bubbles which loudly pop and more. However, the biggest hazard to your survival is the Yamada in the room. If you are spotted, the family member’s stress level will increase until a battle scene triggers. The massive foe gets up and stops whatever they were doing, in order to attack you with their hands, feet, bug spray and even boiling hot water from a shower head. Unlike the blood-sucking sequence, being hit here doesn’t instantly kill you, but you’ll need to avoid taking too much damage while you try to hit relax points to calm your host down. Unfortunately, Moskeeto’s not so easy to manoeuvre and sometimes you will trigger battles or get hit simply because your guy isn’t quite agile enough.
There’s a budget feel to the affair and it’s short, but with a second loop and lots to collect you can wring out more value if you please. The main attraction is the strangeness of the whole experience – being the fly on the wall is appealing, and just watching the family has its own charm. The game has a sense of humour, too – pregame screens include a parody of Resident Evil’s warning, and the cutscenes are pretty funny, too. It’s surprising that any publisher took a chance on bringing Mr Moskeeto to the western markets, but we’re glad that Eidos did.
[PS2] Pick-ups like these heart pieces are absolutely tiny, so you’re going to have to hunt high and low for them.
[PS2] Yes, Rena’s in the bath. Yes, she attacks Mr Moskeeto with the shower. No, you don’t see anything, filthmonger.
[PS2] That red light on Kenichi is a ‘relax point’ – attack it and he’ll calm down and leave battle mode.