Title: Savior Sammie
Game Type: PlayStation Mobile
Download: 114 MB
NA Availability: Digital Download
EU Availability: Digital Download
PSTV Support: Yes
The world of PlayStation Mobile is nearing its end. In just a few short weeks, the PSM store will be shutting down. Because of this, it’s important to check through the library of games for anything you may want to purchase and download before the store goes away for good. My coverage of these games has been much less as we’ve come closer to the closure date.
However, that isn’t stopping just yet. I’ve been in contact with a few PSM developers and have had the chance to be contacted by one of the most recent entries. This is one of the newer games that has released as a free game. Compatible with both the PS Vita and PlayStation TV, here is my requested review of Savior Sammie!
The game doesn’t have much of a story or plot to it. You are Sammie, in charge of a bus that rescues victims of various disasters and accidents, like a sinking ship or burning buildings. This is mostly just to set up what you’re actually doing during the gameplay.
Savior Sammie is a ball-bouncing game. The developer’s initial intention was to make a game that was a cross between Peggle and Breakout, which eventually led to this game. As far as an official genre, I’d call it a ball-bouncing puzzle game. To those not familiar with Peggle and Breakout, it’s pretty similar in mechanics to Pong but with more strategy to it than just that.
When you go into the game, there are four different stages you can go into which are different background environments, such as a burning building, sinking shift, among other things. This is the only way to play the game, so there aren’t a lot of extra game modes past the campaign, which is more of an arcade-like style of game.
When you’re in the game, you will have a bus across the bottom of the stage and Sammie, whom is a ball/sphere that is moving up and down the rest of the area in a very bouncing fashion, bouncing off of the ceiling and walls much like a ball does in Pong. There are also other spheres that represent victims that Sammie must bump into to make fall and catch into the bus.
When you catch victims in your bus, you must return them to a hospital at the right side of the screen before it fills up. The goal is to collect as many victims as you can and never let a single miss happen. You’ll get a game over if Sammie falls to the ground without hitting the bus or a victim does. Sammie will bounce at different angles depending on which section of the bus they hit, so it takes some strategy to set up some nice shots.
The difficulty of the game depends on the stage. Each stage will set up different numbers of victims to catch and some will have other objects you must get around to get to the victims, requiring more articulate movements and angles to be able to do well in the stage. You may need to move Sammie around a bridge or wall to get to the victims. These requires some ingenuity but doesn’t raise the difficulty too high overall.
After you get a Game Over, your score will be recorded and you can shoot whether or not to Tweet your score. Doing this will open Twitter in the Web Browser and let you use your Twitter Account to tweet your score and a hotlink to the site. You can also share the site via Twitter from the Main Menu.
Aside from this, there’s not much to the game. There is no real goal to doing well in each stage other than getting a new High Score. It’s also worth noting that the 4th level is not free. If you wish to play in it, you’ll need to purchase it. Overall, though, doing every stage in the game through once could take as little as 5 minutes. There’s not a lot to the game but the base, simple gameplay.
Controls can go two ways in Savior Sammie. You can use touch controls by sliding your finger up and down the hospital on the right side of the screen or you can use the Left Analog Stick to move the bus instead. Whether you’re comfortable with touch or button controls, you have options. However, if you play this game on the PlayStation TV, you only have the Analog Stick option unless you use make-shift touch controls which are far less accurate.
All in all, the controls are very easy to use and the game’s tutorial in the main menu does an excellent job at showcasing what you can do and how it is done.
The presentation has its ups and has its downs. First of all, all of the bridges, bus, victims, and Sammie look nice. They’ve got a 2D design to them and are done pretty crisp. If you look super close when you pause, you can see some jagged edges, but they’re very hard to see and during gameplay, you’ll never know they’re there at all.
The backgrounds for the presentation can look a bit bleak, though. Each background looks like some sort of blurred painting. This could be on purpose. It looks similar to the types of backgrounds you may see in Peggle, but in that game, they weren’t blurred and showing painting-like backgrounds.
The main down part of the presentation is some lag in the menus. When you go into a stage you’ll get a 3 second wait where the menu just freezes, rather than going to a Now Loading screen. This isn’t a long wait but can look a bit annoying.
Savior Sammie is a unique kind of puzzle game that I’ve not encountered in my writings before. On the downside, there is some blur in the backgrounds, there is some menu lag, and the game doesn’t have a whole lot of content in it. Outside of this is a free-to-play game that plays better than most and is an interesting time-waster when you’re looking for something to do.