KNACK

PlayStation Official Magazine (UK) - - LAUNCH DAY REVISITED -

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“Why Knack?” ques­tions Mim as we set­tle onto the OPM sofa. Knack was the pet project of PS4’s cre­ator Mark Cerny, and was de­vised to be a mas­cot in the same way Crash Bandi­coot was for PS1. The mes­sage was clear: PS4 is not just about first-per­son shoot­ers, it’s also about a weird crea­ture made from ran­domly jig­gled-to­gether bits and bobs. “Knack’s got at­ti­tude, he’s like a mid-’90s PlayS­ta­tion mas­cot. In an­other era he would have been voiced by Bruce Wil­lis,” quips Os­car as we start play­ing. “It does look quite cute. He’s not the cutest, but he’s kind of cute,” con­firms Jess. The game is a sim­ple plat­form ad­ven­ture with the tit­u­lar Knack able to change size by los­ing or adding ‘bits’ of him­self. Do­ing so means he can squeeze into small spa­ces or go big and take out waves of en­e­mies. He’s Ratchet and Clank in one body.

With at­tacks on the face but­tons and dodge-roll on the right thumb­stick Knack is a trick­ier game than its car­toon style sug­gests.

“It’s pun­ish­ing,” moans Os­car as a tiny troll knocks half of Knack’s health bar down in one go. “It’s al­most like Mega Man.” “Looks like you’ve not quite got the knack of that,” teases Jess.

The real let-down is Knack’s vis­ual de­sign. For a game on a new con­sole with, at the time, un­heard-of power, Knack just feels a bit kit-bashed.

It’s like char­ac­ters from five dif­fer­ent iOS games have been fudged to­gether.

“As a launch PS4 game it’s quite nice, but it’s just tech,” moans Ian.

“If it had stronger art de­sign it would have been good. The prob­lems this game has aren’t be­cause it’s a launch game, they’re be­cause it has an unin­spired de­sign.” “It’s tech­ni­cally very good… but it looks like for ev­ery

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