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TerRover demo impressions

Submitted by on Monday, 16 August 20102 Comments

If you’re reading this, there’s a good chance you’re wondering just exactly what TerRover is and why we’re doing a hands on article about it.  Both answers are quite simple.

What is it?  TerRover is a downloadable game that is coming to the PlayStation Store in the near future.

Why are we giving you these impressions?  Because it’s awesome.

TerRover hasn’t received a lot of hype or publicity yet but that’s certainly not because it’s not a promising looking title.  It’s a physics-based 2D side scrolling platform game in which you play as a rover, navigating levels and collecting as many nuts and bolts as you can.  The bolts appear to be there strictly as a collectible item, but the nuts will unlock bigger and better rovers for you to pilot.

Lonely? Tackle the terrain with a friend

TerRover is very easy to pick up and learn but can be very difficult to master or even become proficient at.  The controls are simple, effective, and in only seconds you’ll be able tackle basic navigation with ease.  Due to the game’s physics engine and presumably the weight of the rovers available in the demo, the controls are very touchy and require a lot of precision and practice to become skilled with.

As you navigate your TerRover, there are a number of ways to tackle each level and puzzle you come across.  A simply press of the X button will flip the head of your rover horizontally to the opposite side of his body, changing the direction you’re traveling.  If you press the triangle button, his head will flip vertically – this comes in handy when you’re flipped up-side down.  These simply commands paired with a jump function mean that there’s really no way to get your rover stuck without being able to maneuver your way out.  In the event that you actually do get stuck, there’s a kill switch – very similar to the one in Little Big Planet – that will reset you to a nearby checkpoint.

Persistence is key

There were frustrating parts of levels that made us want to ruin another controller but none of those moments were because of flaws in its design – the game simply takes a lot of time to become comfortable with.  Even with these moments on the top of our mind, they did nothing to take away from the amount of charm the game has, or our post-demo excitement.

Core gameplay aside, TerRover has all the bells and whistles you could possibly ask for from a game such as this.  It supports trophies, local multiplayer for up to four players, and on-line leaderboards.  Not only that, but it also offers custom soundtracks and a video save/upload feature that will let you record and keep gameplay videos on your hard drive, or upload them straight to YouTube.

There's a lot of bolts to collect

We loved pretty much every aspect of this demo.  The art design is fantastic and was a pleasure to look at, the level design is fun and offers a great amount of variety, the game’s quirky controls were fun to learn and offered a solid challenge and the long list of intangible features top it all off with a cherry.

Overall, we’re ecstatic about this little game and can’t wait for its release.  Unfortunately, we’re not entirely certain when we can expect it to hit the Store but our best guess puts it at some time next month.  If any news comes across our desks’ between now and then, we’ll be sure to bring it to you.

If you’ve already played the demo, be sure to let us know what you think.  If you haven’t, you can get it in either your standard subscription episode of Qore, or the single-episode version that’s available to all PlayStation Plus users.