Imagine a series like Kingdom Hearts and you'll have an idea of what a game like Heroes on the Move could possibly be if it had actually been given an absurdly high budget. It's a similar concept, Heroes on the Move is the video game equivalent of taking three legitimate franchises and throwing them into a blender until they become a kind of soft puree of "Casual Game". The plot is dead simple, the characters are easily recognisable, and the controls largely just involve aiming your Move controller in the direction of your television and poking about a ball or a robot or two.
The game is an attempt to bring together the worlds of Jak & Daxter, Ratchet & Clank and Sly Cooper and throw it all together in a relatively straight forward action/puzzle piece. However where Kingdom Hearts had taken a look at Final Fantasy and Disney and wondered how to make an extensive RPG-styled story combining the two, Heroes on the Move asks itself the question "What if the worlds of Jak & Daxter, Ratchet & Clank and Sly Cooper were combined due to some sort of evil alien plot?" and then immediately replies "They would play a sort of odd, extensive game of bowling".
So the title is a dead giveaway. Heroes on the Move utilises Move in its gameplay. And like most early adopters of the tech, the actual gameplay that's been designed around Move is fairly low-key. The game is made up of a series of sporty and action-based mini-games, with 40 levels in total that support two-player co-op. Your job is to defeat a nefarious force that is attempting to enslave a race of peaceful aliens.
The first mini-game we're shown is the Lunkhead Hunt, a game that features floating heads that you're told to destroy within X time limit. Move will control a razor-edged disk: throw the disk and control its movement across a hodgepodge city made up of various areas from the three game worlds. Try and avoid those floating bits of rock else your disk will perish, or alternatively you can aim your disk over toward objects that boost the amount of time you have left to find remaining Lunkheads.
Try the same mini-game as Sly Cooper and gameplay will have shifted to suit your character. Lunkhead Hunt will have gone from an extended match of Frisbee to an extended game of bowling in which you control a brass ball and roll it down a kind of elevated sci-fi street alley for the same effect. Roll the ball, control the ball, hit the lunkhead.
It's the kind of game design that would have popped up somewhere else in the cluster-pile of Wii games. Have a ball, hit the ball at object. Have an orb, deposit the orb at objective point. Have a melee weapon, whack the melee weapon at nearest enemy.
In fact, the next mini-game we're shown is Orb Capture which, as it says on the tin, involves capturing orbs within a certain time limit then delivering those orbs to an orb collector. It's your basic collect-deposit-collect scheme that has you running across platforms in a 3D city as a slew of robots from both Ratchet & Clank and Jak & Daxter attempt to take you out.
As a games reviewer you're taught to avoid clichés but in the case of Heroes on the Move, there is so little to actually judge in terms of extensive gameplay that you have to dust off some of those old chestnuts. So if you like any of these franchises then you will like this game. If you like games that are made up of chunks of mini-games and puzzles then you will like this game. If you like games that make use of new technology then you will like this game. If you like buying things you find in stores then you will probably buy this as well.
Heroes on the Move is due for release on PS3 in 2011.