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Lichtspeer review for PS Vita, PS4

Platform: PS Vita
Also On: PS4, PC
Publisher: Crunching Koalas
Developer: Lichthund
Medium: Digital
Players: 1
Online: No
ESRB: T

From a reviewing perspective, I'm always a little fond of games in which the calculus is simple. Sure, it's the easy way out and a rather reductive way of looking at things, but it makes describing games a breeze.

Take Lichtspeer, for example. It's one of those titles where you can see precisely what went into making it: take a little bit of Angry Birds (or Crush the Castle, or whatever other physics-based game you fancy), add in some javelin, and round it all out with a score that could easily pass for a lost Ratatat album. Throw in a futuristic glam metal aesthetic, and you have all the ingredients for the game ready to go.

Of course, just because it's easy to describe, it doesn't necessarily have to follow that it all works. That's not an issue for Lichtspeer, though. It's one of those games that's so wonderfully intuitive, you can't help but get sucked in immediately. Crazy-looking monsters are advancing on you at various speeds, and all you can do to stop them is hurl your lichtspeer at them. It’s pretty simple, but as is the case with its forebears, it’s also incredibly addictive.

Just about my only criticism of Lichtspeer is that the Vita version doesn't take advantage of the handheld's touchscreen to allow for touch controls. If there’s one thing Angry Birds showed, it’s that physics-based games are made for touch controls, and they get a little more awkward when you have to use old-fashioned buttons and thumbsticks. Obviously, it still works well enough here, but that doesn’t make it any less of a missed opportunity.

That’s the only area where Lichtspeer falters though. Otherwise, it’s a worthy successor to its noteworthy antecedents, and it’s a must-buy if you’re looking for your next addiction on the Vita.

Grade: A