Sony Computer has never failed to give us great gaming entertainment and now they give us Invizimals which brings fighting into an augmented reality by using your own Play Station Portable, along with a mini camera that recognizes a special card that serves as a trapping device for your little creatures.
Invizimals is very similar to the Pokemon series where you catch creatures for your collection; you train them and use them for fights. Through the mini camera, you look for these creatures and trap them with the special card. Fighting comes in the battle mode where you can try your skills against computer generated creatures or fight with your friends’ collection sitting next to you or online.
The game has charming visuals with tutorial videos but that doesn’t make the game easy. In fact, it is more complicated than you think because of the need to focus your camera during gameplay, which makes capturing and fighting harder. To be able to capture creatures, you have to move your camera around to stay behind a creature’s back and capture them. In order for your creature to be within view, your camera must have a clear vantage point of the special trapping card each time. Sometimes, while you are trying to go after your creature, you lose sight of this card; thus, the creature disappears.
As for fights, they use a real-time mechanic system instead of the turn-based one that was traditionally employed. They also make use of three attack moves, a block and a stamina gauge that should be monitored during game time. Invizimals also feature mini games cropping-up; but you don’t have to worry since they are really easy to accomplish.
This is indeed a breakthrough in video gaming because of the incorporation of the real world when capturing your own creatures and going on to an adventure with the use of the mini camera. Another great thing about this game is its slowly-voiced tutorials where instructions are given by an adoring cast of characters with videos to help you understand the game better.
Although the technology behind Invizimals fall short of expectation; and can’t quite deliver on its aspiration, it functions adequately enough to prevent it from failing dismally. There’s an obvious lack of real profundity in the critter combat and the mission structures are too restricted for sufficient satisfaction. There’s a real tendency for this game to become a passing fancy rather than a mainstay despite its undisputedly charming concept and implementation; which the younger players may find alluring for a while.
It can be treated as some kind of a cool novel creature-collection gimmick but the reality is it really won’t take long before the novelty wears off. Still, the chance to play in the image of your room and the minimal thrill of discovering the creatures hiding around is too good to pass and hold some level of challenge, if only momentarily.