It's not often a game actively encourages you to make like a lemming - but then again nothing about the third-person action game Gravity Rush is run-of-the-mill...
Falling equals failing in the grand scheme of videogaming; where putting a foot wrong on that precarious ledge usually means you're turned into instant kerb pizza as you hit the walkway 100 foot below moments later. But in Gravity Rush, you can throw yourself off the nearest building and then, before Isaac Newton can give you an "I told you so" frown, you'll find yourself floating in space at the push of a button.
Then target where you want to leap to and hey presto, you'll land there on your feet whether it be on the floor, the side of a wall or even the underside of a floating city. It's the kind of mind-bending gymnastics that makes the world's greatest parkour runners look about as accomplished as a certain female pop starlet giving a live-vocal performance.
The setting for this clever, gravity-defying system focuses on a girl called Kat, who literally falls into Hekesville, a colourful, cel-shaded art nouveau world which is being overrun by the gloopy Nevi and consumed by a gravity storm. Told via blissfully well-rendered (and sweetly navigated) cut-scene comic panels, Kat's 'the one' who must fight, jump, fall and power-up her way to save the day.
But never mind all that, PlayStation Vita owners will be muttering impatiently, is this the kind of game that could have be done just as easily on, say, an Xbox 360? Thankfully, no - Gravity Rush is a unique title designed to exploit the powerhouse handheld's unique range of abilities. From placing both thumbs on the screen to trigger a gravity slide across the ground (steering by tilting the device), to slashing your finger across the screen to dodge attacks, the PS Vita's hardware feels at one with the onscreen action.
Gravity Rush shows then that with the right ideas and implementation, Sony's latest handheld has the potential to be an innovator and a world-beater. So it's time to celebrate - because the PS Vita just got its first killer app.