Ele-Mental Review

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Title: Ele-Mental
Developer: Hyper-Thetical Games
Game Type: PlayStation Mobile
Download: 43 MB
NA Availability: 
Digital Download 

EU Availability: Currently Unavailable
PSTV Support: Yes

It’s not every day that PSVR is approached by developers to take a look into their games for reviews.  The last developer that contacted us without us contacting them was Tasty Poison Games, the creators of Pocket RPG.  Since then, we have contacted several developers about several games, but rarely do we have developers taking the initiative towards us.  Today’s review is an exception to that rule.

PlayStation Mobile adds a lot of opportunities for this situation to happen.  PSM games are like indie games, but even smaller.  Some PSM games are made by a single person, let alone an entire team.  The small of the small, you could say, despite PS Mobile having more releases some week than many other consoles, including the Vita.  This makes this a large library to search through as well as to keep up with, regarding new games.

Smaller games from these smaller developers aren’t a bad thing, though.  Many PSM games offer fun little experiences for affordable prices that you won’t find anywhere else.  Many of them aren’t deep like Uncharted or Hyperdimension Neptunia, but they don’t need to be.  As a good example of a game that doesn’t need to be deep to be fun, here is our official review of the PSM game, Ele-Mental!

Story

Due to this game not having any sort of plot or story, this section shall be blank

Gameplay

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Ele-Mental is a fast-paced puzzle game, if you could even classify it as that.  The entire game is like a puzzle as you fly around the screen, trying to match colors and it gets very intense the faster things progress.  It has a very basic concept to it, but the best way to describe it is that it is a puzzle game.

Ele-Mental puts you in charge of a colored orb that is flying around space.  Your goal is to increase your score by absorbing other orbs and objects the same color as you.  There are four colors total: Yellow, Green, Red, and Blue.  Collecting orbs the same color as you will increase your score and collecting orbs not the same color as you will take away one of your remaining lives.  The goal is to get as high a score as possible to progress to the further levels.

The game is simple enough, but getting to higher levels is where things start to get tricky.  At first, you’re collecting tiny orbs that bounce around the screen.  It’s pretty easy to just change your color and get them.  As you get to higher stages, there are more hazards, such as larger orbs that are constantly following you or lasers that travel across the screen that you must be its color to avoid being automatically killed.

Progressing through levels is determined by score.  The first few levels, you need to collect 20 orbs a piece to get to the next level, and the later ones will require more, like 30, 40, etc.  Even in the first few stages, the game can get very fast and very hard pretty quickly.  It’s a simple game, but it’s also a hard game.

Playing this game is about either playing Arcade Mode or Survival Mode.  Each one has unique aspects, and there are also a lot of unlockables that you can get as you play the game, like background music, enemy switching, or turbo and turrets.  Doing better in the game gets you more “Awesome Points” to be able to get these unlockable features.  You can also view your stats, from the number of certain colors and enemy types you’ve absorbed, Arcade Scores, and more.

All in all, the game isn’t a very long game.  Because of the fast-paced nature of the game, a single session could be as short as a few minutes or as long as 30+ minutes.  It all depends on how long you wish to play along with how skilled you become at the game’s style.  Getting all of the unlockables will take several hours to do, but if you just want a casual game, you may not be using the game for more than 15 minutes at a time.

Controls

Controlling the game isn’t going to cause you a lot of problems.  The game has a very simple control style that is pretty easy to figure out.  First of all, you don’t need to use the touch screen for anything as you play through this game.  In fact, you’ll rarely be using anything other than the face buttons and the Left Analog Stick.

Most of the controls are going to be done with the face buttons.  As you cycle through the menus, you will be using the face buttons to go into the various game modes, which is labeled on the main screen as soon as the game loads.  In gameplay, you will also be using these to change the color of your orb as you hunt and run from the other orbs on the screen.  The Left Analog Stick will also be used, as this is how you move around the screen.

All in all, it’s not a hard control scheme to understand.  While the game doesn’t go out of the way to tell you how the game plays or what control does what in gameplay, it’s not very hard to figure out.

Presentation

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The game has a very simple visual design to it.  You won’t see a lot of fancy 3D visuals, but just some very basic spheres and other shapes for the various orbs and enemies that can be on the screen.  This looks mostly good, though there are some jagged edges to be seen on the orb that you are controlling as well as some of the enemy orbs.  It’s harder to see these, depending on the color, but they are there and those models aren’t perfect.

How the game plays is mostly good as well.  When you get to the main menu, there are little to no load times at all to jump into a game.  Tap Triangle to start Arcade Mode and less than a second later you’re already dodging and chasing in the middle of the game.  The initial load time is fairly lengthy, sporting about 20 seconds to get to the Main Menu.  After that, though, it’s pretty simple and runs well.

Summary

Ele-Mental is: Good
Ele-Mental is an example that a game doesn’t need to be deep and extensive to be fun.  On the downside, the game’s visuals have some jagged edges here and there and the game doesn’t tell you how the game plays, outside of learning from experience.  Past that, though, is an intense puzzle game that will test your patience from the first 5 minutes of play. 

8/10

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