Publisher: Mass Creation
Developer: Mass Creation
Like Burn The Rope, Jetpack Joyride and Dragon Fantasy Book 1 before it, Draw Slasher arrives on the Vita after getting its start in the iOS gaming ecosystem. While that hardly constitutes a massive trend, it is enough to say that iOS games seem to follow three different routes of adjusting to the different platforms. There's not charging a thing, releasing the game for free, and making money off of in-app purchases (like Jetpack Joyride); there's adapting things to the new platform, and getting around the awkward question of pricing and content by charging the same amount (a la Dragon Fantasy); and there's the Burn the Rope way of adapting, which is tinkering with a few things here and there, charging a few times more than you charge in Apple's App Store, and hoping that people won't mind paying a PlayStation Store premium. As you can tell, I'm not a fan of that last method — even if the game itself was still just as fun on the Vita as it was on my iPod.
I'm disappointed, then, to report that Draw Slasher follows squarely in Burn The Rope's footsteps: it changes a few things here and there (it adds a challenge mode, and it…well, that's pretty much it, unless you're a fan of newly-recorded voice acting), but the core game is pretty much the same as what you'd get on your iDevice.
That, by itself, isn't a bad thing, since the game was — and still is, for that matter — a blast to play, a perfect example of simplicity going a long way. You play as a monkey ninja mowing down rows upon rows of zombie monkeys, and that's all there is to it. Yes, you need to change your tactics depending on what type of zombie monkey you're facing down, but its core gameplay never changes too much. Couple that with a decently funny script and some lovely visuals, and it's hard to find fault with the game itself.
Problems arise, however, when you consider that you're paying three times as much for the Vita version as you would for the same game on your iPod/iPhone/iPad. I know, I know: we're only talking about $2 versus $6, and it's a sign of how much App Store pricing has screwed up people's expectations that I'm complaining about it. Nonetheless, it's still the undeniable fact that the Vita version of Draw Slasher costs more, and it's hard to see why.
This is further compounded by the fact that the game's campaign is only a few hours long, at most. You could certainly prolong things if you have an urge to climb up the leaderboards or get all the Trophies, but otherwise you're looking at a game that could realistically be beaten in one medium-length sitting.
Here's what it ultimately comes down to, I guess: Draw Slasher is a fun game, and I'd encourage you to play it, but only if you're paying the lowest price possible. If you do literally all your mobile gaming on your Vita, then by all means, buy it and enjoy. If you have an iDevice, though…you might want to think about just how much Trophies mean to you, and make your decision from there.