If you were wondering about a game that can force you to use the PlayStation Vita’s alternate control method without ever having to use the analog sticks or the face buttons,Little Deviants is for you. Much like the Welcome Park app that is already included with every Vita, Little Deviants sets out to explore the various control methods that the PS Vita brings to the table as you help the cute little critters across 30 different mini-games.
The game opens up with the mortal enemy of the Deviants, the Botz, shooting down the Deviants’ spaceship. As the spaceship explodes to pieces and crashes on a strange world, it is up to you to rebuild it and help the Deviants get off that rock. There are 3 medals to collect in each mini-game: bronze, silver and gold. To move on to the next mini-game you are required to hit at least the bronze marker.
As mentioned at the beginning of the review, the game relies solely on using the touch and motion controls, so if you don’t care for them this game isn’t for you. The shoulder buttons are used during some of the mini-games, but those are the only buttons you will ever press. Whether the controls work or not really depends on the games themselves; some work well, but there are a few that boggle the mind on why the controls simply do not work, or they work worse than the others. The first mini-game is probably the worst one in the entire game. It requires you to use the rear touchpad to manipulate the environment in order to push the deviant, who is in a ball, across the land and collect the key to open the gate to the next area. Of course, in your way are all types of hazards; while this doesn’t sound too complex, the use of the rear touchpad is borderline horrendous and results in getting hit more often than you should.
One of the better minigames has you shooting the Botz in spaceships as they try to take the deviants through portals. This is all presented as an AR game as you shoot everything flying around your living room, office or wherever you are playing. Doing this while in public proved to be much more difficult, as the Botz can travel around in a full 360 degrees which in essence forces you to do a complete 180. Sitting on a commuter train in the morning is definitely not the best place to play this game. Here in lies the fault with many of the mini-games as it is better to play the games at home than on the go. Some of the games require very precise movements, while the same motion in another mini-game may require you to turn the device 90 degrees.
The game uses a very vivid color palette that makes everything pop, but nothing in particular will make you say “wow.” The color and the charm are there, but technically it is not a very pleasing game. However, in this type of game it works and it doesn’t need to be a powerhouse. The music can be catchy and the sound effects suffice, but nothing truly stood out.
Multiplayer is nowhere to be seen in the game, but it does come with online leaderboards to compete against your friends. While this will add some to the replayability, nothing will trump being able to go against each other online. There are collectibles hidden throughout in which you are able to view in an interactive cat gallery, I mean art gallery. That’s right! You can collect blocky headed cats, or moggles, throughout and view them in portraits in a gallery. Tapping on the gallery will lead to them jumping out of their portrait as it is all presented very well, but it’s just an odd set of things to collect. Besides all of that, there are your own stats to keep track of: how far you have rolled or how many times you have bounced the deviants around.
As with all mini-game focused games, it is best to play Little Deviants in small doses. Maybe in between sessions of other games or while waiting for something to download from the PS Store. The game has plenty of cuteness, but beyond the 30 mini-games, some which repeat just on different maps, Little Deviants will slowly fade back in your library once you have had enough of it.
Note: The Little Deviants review was written based on the Vita version of the game.