A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this game.
Kids can learn about puzzle-solving, creativity, and paper-craft art in this clever and highly original 3-D platform adventure. Players get to use their understanding of how things like paper and glue work in the real world to solve the game's simple puzzles, unspooling rolls of paper to create paths or peeling back flaps to open doors. They then can build dozens of the game's clever paper objects by printing out schematics and instructions. Tearaway is a wonderfully inventive game that will let kids explore their creativity in ways both digital and physical.
This game is about discovery, exploration, and creativity. Players get to experience the thrill of discovery as they use their fingers to unwrap digital presents and craft with virtual paper. Then they can download printable files of objects and characters they've seen and recreate them with real paper.
Positive Role Models
Iota (Atoi, if you choose to play as a female character) is a paper messenger attempting to deliver an important message and understand his place and purpose in the world. He gets into a few fights with paper monsters and minions, but mostly he only wants to explore, learn, help, and create.
Ease of Play
The basic controls for movement, jumping, and camera control are pretty much identical to those of any 3-D platformer. Things get a bit trickier when it comes to using the rear touch panel and the front touchscreen, which can require some nimble finger gymnastics. However, players have unlimited lives, and checkpoints generally occur every few seconds.
Violence & Scariness
Players need to stomp on, roll into, and throw fantastical paper characters to defeat them. The occasional paper skeleton of long gone paper creatures can be seen gathering dust in the environments.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Tearaway is a 3-D platform adventure game starring a little paper messenger. Although there's a bit of combat that sees the protagonist hopping on, rolling up against, and throwing various papery minions, the focus here is much more on exploration, discovery, and, especially, creativity. Players get to create and customize objects within the game, take photos, record their voices, and interact with the world in unusual ways. They also can recreate the characters and objects they see in the game by downloading dozens -- and dozens -- of printable paper models and their corresponding instructions, which are unlocked while they're playing. It's a great outlet for creativity both on and off the gaming console.
Is It Any Good?
Tearaway is very likely the most original, daring, and just plain entertaining game yet released for PlayStation Vita. Everything in its beautiful paper world stays true to the game's paper theme, from glue-coated walls that give Tearaway's hero the ability to walk along them to virtual currency made of confetti. The three-dimensional adventure, filled with memorable characters in need of the messenger's help, is a delight from start to finish. Even more remarkable, though, is how players can capture pictures of characters and objects with the game's camera and then download their blueprints and instructions so they can print them out and build them in the real world, recreating specific scenes from the game or creating their own. It's a terrific and wholly unique melding of the real and virtual worlds that acts as a terrific bit of added value and will ensure players young and old never forget this one-of-a-kind adventure.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.