LocoRoco Reader Review
On the face of it LocoRoco looks a little simple. Controls are so basic it is almost a joke (2 bumpers and Square). Graphics are a little plain. Music is repetitive and the cutesy main character is a yellow blob. However when you join all these elements together it works. Not just a little bit but a whole lot! Not since I first picked up the PSP and played my initial 5 hours of Lumines have I found another game that actually makes me sorry to reach the station on the way home (well almost).
You play as a planet. That’s right a planet. The little Yellow blob is a LocoRoco that lives on you. You control the tilt of the world with the bumpers and can bump it, pinball style, to make the LocoRoco jump. A meteor crashed into the planet and sprayed forth little black dreadlocked creatures called Hujas that want to eat all the nice little LocoRocos. It is your job to help the LocoRocos through the levels eating everything in sight on the way.
Game play is reminiscent of early 2D Platform games like Sonic in the sideways scrolling, collect and jump mould (which can only be a good thing). What makes this game different is that once you have eaten a few magic flowers you start getting bigger and fatter. Then you have the ability to explode into smaller LocoRocos to get past certain obstacles, sing to wake up sleep clouds and generally fly around the screen as a mass of smaller blobs.
Once you get into the game the Jap pop tunes actually start to make sense. The LocoRocos are singing them as you go. An added bonus is when you split into the little guys you get a choir effect, which is very cool. The sound in general is excellent. From the Jap pop tunes that you are still trying to get out of your head many days and many tracks later. To the little scared yells from the LocoRoco as you approach danger.
The levels increase in difficulty without ever being very hard. As you go along you unlock more music and a few other sets of blobs that have different voices (I like the little red guys personally). The longevity of this game is in the replayability of the levels rather than the prolonged single player campaign. You have a number of goals on each level. Try and find 20 LocoRocos, 3 MuiMuis (a little mate of LocoRocos), Set a fast time (Once you have found all 20) and obtain a high score. The levels are rife with secret cubbyholes to pick up those extra goodies so finding them is half the battle.
There are a few mini-games included and a cool Loco House that you can set up a little like the old mouse-trap board game with complex wheels and platforms to try and obtain more Loco House Parts to make more complex house paths and so on.
Now for the bad part… LocoRoco is addictive. I have enjoyed playing it but my girlfriend is obsessed. My evenings are now much simpler as I sit, watching TV, as she screams and bounces and yells at LocoRoco because they are not doing what she wants. She has become very animated about LocoRoco and if I annoy her I get a swift nudge with a “Huja! Huja!” comment thrown in for good measure.
So if you enjoy a good Platform game, don’t mind boppy Jap pop tunes and have a spare life to give I can strongly recommend this game. LocoRoco is easily one of the best games available on the PSP.
9 / 10