Review: Gravity Rush Remastered (PS4)

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Title: Gravity Rush Remastered
Format: Blu-ray Disc / PlayStation Network Download (9.2 GB)
Release Date: February 2, 2016
Publisher: Sony Computer Entertainment
Developer: SCE Japan Studio / Project Siren / Bluepoint Games
Original MSRP: $29.99
ESRB Rating: T
Gravity Rush is also available on PlayStation Vita.
The PlayStation 4 download version was used for this review.
A copy of this game was provided by the publisher for review purposes.
PS Nation Review Policy

Gravity Rush launched on the PlayStation Vita in 2012 to high praise. Gravity Rush Remastered is a PlayStation 4 port incorporating all of the content that came with the original release along with the post-launch DLC. This includes three DLC packs, titled Maid, Spy, and Special Forces, which all have identical trophy sets to the Vita versions.

Without spoiling any major plots points, here is a brief recap of the beginning of the story. You play as a gravity-shifter named Kat. The game starts with you dropping into the city and not having any memory. The only thing you have near you is a cat that has some funky purple glow to him.

The cat begins to run away from you and as you follow it, you run into a character that needs help. You don’t think you can help but you soon find out with the cat being nearby you can shift gravity. The city is in turmoil and really needs to be fixed up. As you progress through the episodes more and more of what is wrong with the town is shown to you and all you’re trying to do is to help the city.

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Gameplay:
The most obvious change for Gravity Rush Remastered is with the extra buttons afforded by the DualShock 4 in comparison to the Vita. You shift gravity by hitting R1 and can now either use the right analog stick or motion control to maneuver the camera.

This works so much better on the PS4, due to the simple fact that your TV screen is larger than the Vita screen. The camera is still a little wonky in this version and I feel like it’s too close to the character when you’re shifting gravity, which can be very disorienting.

Your primary attack is an air kick. You press and hold Square after aiming your target at the desired location, and this was the first issue I came across. While doing your air kick, there is a crazy aim assist.

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There were plenty of times where I would aim at a weak point on an enemy and Kat would ‘defy gravity’ and change the angle to hit the mark. Sometimes though, I thought I had great aim and Kat just completely missed the target. This was very frustrating when I really needed to land one more hit before taking any more damage or dying.

… the mission structure is small …
As you progress through the game you’ll be able to upgrade your abilities. You can make the amount of time you shift gravity longer, or can make your kick attack stronger. In order to upgrade you need to find precious gems around the world and they are everywhere! They can be found on top of buildings or below them, and since you can defy gravity, they may simply float high above your head.

Other items that can be found are just there to help guide you through your next episode or mission objective. You can also get precious gems from completing challenge missions. In order to unlock a challenge mission though, you must first spend gems in order to fix something that is broken in the city, like the town fountain or the drawbridge.

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The game was built for a handheld so the mission structure is small compared to most console releases. The shorter episodes were a pleasant surprise as I really felt like I was progressing in the story. Getting a trophy upon completion of each episode was a nice bonus. There are twenty-one episodes that comprise the base story, and there are multiple challenge missions and side quests that are part of the complete package.

… looked great all the way to the end …
Visuals:
This game is gorgeous, filled with vibrant colors, cool environments, and unique enemies that are obvious as to where you need to damage them. It never chugged or ran slow. Even when shifting gravity or flying through the air with tremendous speed, the game held up and looked great all the way to the end. At the end of each major boss fight, there’s a finisher cut scene, which is a favorite of mine since they just look so cool.

I did run into one issue where I somehow got off the map. I couldn’t really tell where I was and I was hitting a lot of invisible walls but it did fix itself and it only happened one time. It’s worth noting though.

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Audio:
Gravity Rush Remastered sounds great. The soundtrack was always playing as I explored the world. The chatter of the people talking around you, and the NPCs freaking out when you shift gravity made me feel immersed in the world.

The comic book art style they used to tell the story, mostly through text, is great but lacks music. If you stop to read a phrase again and don’t hit Cross as fast as the game would like you to, the music just stops and leaves an awkward silence that doesn’t really pick back up until the current comic book-style cut-scene ends.

… couldn’t put the game down …
Online/Multiplayer:
This game is singleplayer only but there are online leaderboards where you can compare yourself to others who have played the challenge missions.

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Conclusion:
Gravity Rush Remastered looks great, it has some awesome music, and it is very satisfying when you complete an episode or upgrade an item. But the major factor for me when I play any game is: ‘Did I have fun?’ This is a resounding yes.

I couldn’t put the game down. No matter how many times I died fighting bosses while trying to complete a challenge, I kept going back. I wanted to know what was going to happen next, what power I was going to get, and how was that new power or ability going to play into the story.

I now have a strong desire to go back and give the Vita version a playthrough as well. The few difficult areas I played made the game challenging enough that I didn’t feel like I was overpowered or breezing through the levels. The few glitches I ran into did take me out of the world for a bit, but they didn’t ruin any of the experience that I had. With a sequel in the works, this is a must-play PS4 game for sure.

Score:
8.0

* All screenshots used in this review were taken directly from the game using the Share functionality on the PlayStation 4.

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  • I never gave this a chance on Vita, but now (finally) this has a confirmed physical edition release date here in the UK (February), count me in! Great review, thank you.

  • Jahonius

    WhhhhaaaaT? DAVE reviewing a game other than Destiny??

    Jokes aside, I’m very glad you enjoyed this little gem.

    Sounds like they did a great job porting a handheld game over to the big boy.

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