TGS PlayStation Move Roundup: LBP2, Echochrome II, Beat Sketcher, and Tumble

We take a motion-controlled tour through some of Sony's featured PlayStation Move demos.

Sony has staked out some serious territory at Tokyo Game Show 2010. One of the most prominent features of Sony's area is the two-story structure that houses close to 20 rooms. Each of these rooms is a demo area for a specific PlayStation Move-compatible game, and they are all missing one wall, which makes them look like little cubbyholes designed to show off the Move in action. We poked our heads into a few of these rooms and played an assortment of games. We carefully stacked blocks in Tumble, traced a tyrannosaurus along with the music in Beat Sketcher, used shadows to solve puzzles in Echochrome II, and guided Sackgirl through a perilous digestive system in Little Big Planet 2. Read on to find out just how the PlayStation Move handled these strange and diverse tasks.

Little Big Planet 2 is the sequel to Media Molecule's critically acclaimed platformer. The levels we played were bursting with the creativity and visual charm that the franchise is known for, as well as some new elements that were specifically designed with the Move in mind. During our demo, our host used the DualShock 3 controller to guide Sackgirl through a prehistoric world, and we wielded the Move to help her along. By pointing at the bright-pink elements onscreen and holding the trigger, we manipulated the environment in a number of ways. We opened a dinosaur skull to allow her to pass and then used it to flip her up to the next platform. We used a tree branch to lure an apatosaurus down so Sackgirl could climb on its head, and we carried a protective dome over her head as she passed near a volcano. The simple motions occasionally required some dexterity, but mostly they seemed suited for including younger players or those otherwise disinclined to enjoy playing with the analog sticks.

Though Little Big Planet 2 is certainly a more widely recognized game, the one that piqued our interest was Echochrome II. This sequel once again puts the fate of a human figure in your hands without actually letting you control the figure. Instead, you must shape the level to allow the figure to safely navigate through to the exit. Each level contains a spotlight shining on an assortment of shapes that are suspended in midair. The spotlight causes the shapes to cast shadows on a back wall, and because the figure is actually a silhouette, the shadows are the platforms that it walks on. By using the Move controller to change the angle of the spotlight, you can connect separate shadows to create continuous platforms for the figure to traverse.

Those bright-pink spots should help Sackboy avoid the beast's bite.

The figure climbs and descends stairs of varying heights and turns around when it reaches the end of a platform. It can bounce high into the air off of ball shadows, fall through circular holes in specific shadows, and teleport between the shadows of door frames. These environmental elements add some variety and hint at further complexity in later puzzles. Finally, you must also create the exit out of shadows by aligning a ball shadow and a rectangle shadow to form an arched doorway. This can serve as a visual cue as to when you are getting close to a solution, and some puzzles even resolve into solid images (like smiley faces and snakes) when you get them right. Echochrome II's environments seemed packed with potential for more complex situations, and the simple Move controls were intuitive and fun to use.

Beat Sketcher continues the theme of simple Move controls, though the creative focus of the game means there is a lot more to do. On a basic level, Beat Sketcher is a drawing studio that allows you to paint images on to the canvas of whatever room you are standing in. This default background comes courtesy of the PlayStation Eye camera, but you are free to alter it in whatever way you wish. All the familiar paint studio tools are here (brushes of varying size, shape-making tools, spray paint, stamps, erasers, and so on) as are a wide variety of different colors.

After doodling around for a bit, we took on the challenge of tracing predetermined images along with a musical track. First, a guideline is automatically drawn onscreen, accompanied by a musical riff. Then, you must fill in the guideline, following a target reticle that moves in time with the same musical riff played during the drawing of the guideline. The idea is to use the music to match the speed of your Move motion to that of the target reticle, but it's easier said than done. Our dolphin turned out a bit mushy, and the tyrannosaurus rex didn't fare much better. This part of Beat Sketcher definitely offered a bit of a challenge, but seeing our drawing come together was still pretty satisfying.

Detonating stacks of blocks can be just as fun as building them, if not more so.

The last game we checked out was Tumble, a downloadable game that was released on the PlayStation Network in the US this week. Some of the challenges in Tumble involve stacking blocks of varying size, shape, and material as high as you can. Depending on how high you go, you earn a bronze, silver, or gold medal for your efforts. There are obstacles to contend with, however, such as platforms that move back and forth along a laser rail, obstructing you from just building straight up. With some careful stacking and proper balance you can circumvent these objects, and the Move controls were precise enough to allow us to be as gentle as we could manage. Other challenges were less constructive, focusing instead on destroying a tower for maximum points. By placing a few remote-detonated mines, you try to cause the blocks to scatter outward as far as you can. You earn points based on how far they go, including bonuses for special multiplier blocks.

While Echochrome II was the highlight of our Move demos, they all showcased the precision of Sony's new hardware. Everything felt intuitive, whether it was manipulating intestinal walls in LBP2 or choosing a bright-purple paintbrush in Beat Sketcher. Each game also showed a different application of the motion controls, and we're looking forward to seeing the new ways that developers will implement this hardware in the future.

Written By

With his Apple IIGS as the spark and his neighbor's NES the fuel, Chris Watters' passion for gaming caught fire early. Y

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Discussion

38 comments
XanderZane
XanderZane

Thread-Thief you saw you first MOVE controller? ******************************************************** I meant commercial. =========================================================== @fester420 just got the move today and loving it. tumble is pretty awesome and i cant get enough disc golf on sports champions. the motion tracking is leaps and bounds beyond the wii. ******************************************************************************* Sport Champions had received mixed reviews, but most are saying it's decent. I love the disc golf on Wii Sports Resort, so if SC version controls better, it'll be worth playing. I figured Tumble would play well with MOVE controls. I still need more better games before I fork over any money for MOVE. It's seem a lot of people are waiting it out as well, as MOVE only sold 65,000 it's first week in the U.S. =========================================================== @TevoxZ @XanderZane It's called an opinion, yours is different, I'm fine with it, but don't claim something is necessarily bad just because you don't like it. I'm interested in Sorcery, Killzone 3, Dead Space (Extraction) and Resident Evil 5 on the Move. Maybe Uncharted 3 will, as well, support Move in some way. *************************************************************************************** Everyone has an opinion. The opinion of the journalist is that most of the games for the MOVE are bad. SC & EyePet see to be the only games specifically made for the MOVE that are worth a try. In just about every review I've read so far, they've all complained about the controller losing connection during play. So it's not just my opinion.

JESSEAARON100
JESSEAARON100

Sackboy is back! And i can't to play Little Big Planet 2.The 1st game was very addicting and i wonder how LBP2 will be! WOW

eddyoshi
eddyoshi

LBP 2 cool, playstation move cool. the two formed together........... i dunno

spitfireriggz
spitfireriggz

what if... portal 2 came out with move support?? wouldnt it be the darnest thing if the people that first hated sony and now like it even supported the move?? Who knows i got the idea from another comment that said echochrome was amazing but not as good as portal. i figured.... move.... portals... genius?

smokeless_0225
smokeless_0225

Drop it down below $100 and I'll get it. Hopefully they'll have some sort of sale after the holidays. It looks neat, it's better than the Wii, but still, $100 is still way too OP. Sorry Sony.

Leefx
Leefx

@STRIFE9288.....I have to agree mate I soon paid for the full game key after playing the Tumble demo, crackin little puzzler, a bit like Tetris crossed with Jenga, but the key is its fun!

Hevion
Hevion

motion sensing is good when it is used as 1:1 motion sensing. but when like most wii games motion sensing is just used as another button thats just dumb. pointing and shooting is fun though. but the wii's nunchuck fails because of it's wire. it made red steel 2 extremely uncomfortable for me. move doesnt have wires between controllers..right?

STRIFE9288
STRIFE9288

I GOT IT THE DAY IT CAME OUT. ISH IS SO FIYA. TUMBLE IS AWESOME I BOUGHT IT REAL QUICK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

glassesboy
glassesboy

Going to get this in November-December for sure!

Purplekjw
Purplekjw

I love the technology, but I don't like the games so much. Most of them remind me of Wii games. Killzone should be awesome, if they do sacrifice other aspects for the inclusion of motion control. I want PS3 games on the Move, not Wii games. (I'm not saying the Move is like the Wii by the way, just the crappy games that the developers cranked out) Here's hoping to see better stuff in the future, then I'll definitely pick one up.

StuartBraule
StuartBraule

im loving the Move, i bought 2 yesterday with sports champions and i downloaded all the demos, plus i had tiger woods 11, hustle kings and that bowling game (cant remember the name) and its like playing a completly diffrent game from playing with a duel shock!

broncean
broncean

I got Move yesterday with Sports champion, i expected not to regret the buy but i was far from it, im loving it its pretty awesome, and this is just the launch roster. Oh and in my opinion the charge station is pretty neat as well, i already got 2 dualshock and now 2 move controllers and it just takes a load of your back having the extra loading space

Tarfang2
Tarfang2

i think ill be the 1st xbox 360 player to etmit that the excluies for ps3 have a much brighter future halo, gears, fable and mass effect will all soon come to an end and microsoft will need gd replacments not just focusing on their kinect. the ps3 however has exclesives exploding out its ears but as long as i get the deccent cross platform titles im cool

Tarfang2
Tarfang2

i never got into LBP i know y ppl liked it i got ( for psp ) but i just didnt like it i dont know y but i didnt i also think the move will be like the ps3 itslef at the begging no realy good games until a year then there will be loads all at once

desauce
desauce

Got the Move yesterday and I have to say that it is better than I expected. I would have to say to get an extra Move controller though. Some games are more fun with two. O and by the way Resident Evil 5 Gold Edition is awesome with the Move along with Tiger Woods 2011. In my opinion you can't compare the Move to the Wii. Move is just much better technology.

PayneKiller
PayneKiller

everyone on my friends list I saw playing Sports Champions I messaged them asking how was Move. The replies were all on the lines of "bad ass". And people on my list are usually the call of duty or FIFA types, not the usual casual gamers. And imagine they haven't even played Resident Evil or Killzone 3 with it as yet.

crunchb3rry
crunchb3rry

Wow, Echochrome 2 looks insane. Not exactly Portal 2 insane, but enough for me to definitely want to try that.

hippiesanta
hippiesanta

resident evil 5 gold edition move bundle is a must have. It's cheaper than buying separately

thattotally
thattotally

It would be moderately cool if this PS Move doesn't sell at all so Sony drops the price by as much as $50, maybe even $100. I can certainly afford the contraption, but it still seems to be nothing more than a novelty at best. I mean a light bulb that changes color is hella cool, but... it's not enough.

zyxahn
zyxahn

Yes hkymike. It was. Sports Champions was ALOT more fun then I thought it was going to be. I think alot of people as well are going to surprised at how much fun they are having playing it. I love the Gladiator Duel, but you have to get a second Move controller to really get the most fun out of the games. Beach Volleyball was another that I didn't think would be any good but when you learn how to set the ball up for your teammate to slam it, man is it fun. The Archery game if you have 2 moves you can reach back to grab an arrow from the quiver ( which are numbered so you will run out of arrows if you are missing to much ) and pull the moves apart and fire. Great job Sony !!!

roll450
roll450

I might get the move, but I'll stick with my trusty controller for the meantime.

Daiki101
Daiki101

Little BIG Planet 2 is gonna rock, i hope it isnt too diffrent then lbp 1

hkymike
hkymike

Just got the move tonight and it's amazing!

TevoxZi
TevoxZi

@XanderZane It's called an opinion, yours is different, I'm fine with it, but don't claim something is necessarily bad just because you don't like it. I'm interested in Sorcery, Killzone 3, Dead Space (Extraction) and Resident Evil 5 on the Move. Maybe Uncharted 3 will, as well, support Move in some way.

Fz1994
Fz1994

gonna get move in november!

RedWave247
RedWave247

I'm still waiting for a game specifically made with the Move in mind. I mean a full game, not the casual ones we've seen in release. A full length game with a story and everything. I really want to like the Move, but I'm just not sold on it yet, game-wise.

whatevawhateva
whatevawhateva

Got the move yesterday and it is AWESOME!!!!!!!!!!!

MOwens9512
MOwens9512

@adc89 - Never fear, it's not Move only lol LBP2 is just Move compatible. There's going to definitely be a lot of copy cat and basic level games for the Move from the break of course while developers figure out what to do with it. For Sony's sake, hopefully they'll realize sooner than later that the PS3's specs will give them a lot more room to work with than the Wii. I think the final verdict will be in on the Move once Sony rolls out the more "hardcore" product. It's not enough to just release games that peak the interests of the non-casual crowd, they have to be great and work well with the Move. LBP2 skews the line between hardcore and casual so it might be one of the first real test. to drop.

fester420
fester420

just got the move today and loving it. tumble is pretty awesome and i cant get enough disc golf on sports champions. the motion tracking is leaps and bounds beyond the wii.

adc89
adc89

i just hope im not forced to buy Move just so i can play LBP2. Even if it's just special things that can be unlocked only with Move i'll be a little upset.

ChamomileBaths
ChamomileBaths

@ Chris Watters I think you hit a big point about motion control in the second paragraph, "...but mostly they seemed suited for including younger players or those otherwise disinclined to enjoy playing with the analog sticks." That kind of statement shows on which grounds motion control should be judged.

Joker_268
Joker_268

Some games are just not good with Move.

XanderZane
XanderZane

Most of these games, i wouldn't even bother using the MOVE controller with. Maybe with Tumble, but definitely not Echochrome. That game is a pain with just the regular controller. I finally saw my first MOVE commercial. It was pretty lame. That Kevin Butler (Jerry Lambert) guy was in it. Not surprising. Besides Sorcerer and maybe one other title, none of the MOVE titles are anything special.