Rip Into Media Molecule's Latest PS Vita Game 'Tearaway'

By Joseph Leray

Not content to sit back while United Front Games develops LittleBigPlanet Karting, Media Molecule announced Tearaway, an adventure puzzle game for the PlayStation Vita, at Gamescom yesterday.

According to Media Molecule’s blog, Tearaway stars iota, a scrappy little guy with a message to deliver. As his guide and godlike companion, players will be tasked with solving puzzles and fighting enemies.

“You directly control iota’s running, jumping, frolicking and more,” writes Media Molecule community manager James Spafford. “But with this game, you the player are holding more than just a PS Vita in your hands; you’re holding the paper world itself!”

Moreover, Media Molecule seems impressively cognizant of the Vita’s hardware. There are the now-expected blowing and shouting mechanics associated with the microphone, but part of Tearaway’s conceit is that the gameworld is self-contained and portable.

The most interesting implication on display so far is players’ ability to punch through the world with the Vita’s touchpad to manipulate puzzles and in-game objects.

And if iota’s one-eyed, rough-and-tumble demeanor hasn’t broken your heart yet, consider Tearaway’s coup-de-grâce: at one point, iota agrees to help an elk find a new skin. Is there anything sadder than an elk with no skin?

Looking at Tearaway’s trailer, and given Media Molecule’s history with LittleBigPlanet, it’s clear that a pattern is starting to emerge: Media Molecule is interested in games that make great use of texture and music, with an emphasis on quirk and whimsy in its scenarios and mechanics.

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