Tearaway

Common Sense Media says

Amazing, creative adventure melds real and virtual worlds.

Age(i)

2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17

Quality(i)

 

Learning(i)

What parents need to know

Positive messages

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.

Language
Not applicable
Consumerism
Not applicable
Privacy & safety

Minor privacy and safety concerns. Players are encouraged to create a profile at Tearaway.me using their PSN account. There they can view, download, and share any schematics and photos they've uploaded from the game. There are no traditional online interactions within the game proper, though players with Twitter and Facebook accounts can Tweet and post updates reflecting their accomplishments. 

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.

What kids can learn

Subjects

Arts

  • playing
  • sculpture

Hobbies

  • building
  • collecting

Skills

Thinking & Reasoning

  • solving puzzles

Creativity

  • imagination
  • making new creations

Tech Skills

  • digital creation

Engagement, Approach, Support

Engagement

Kids will love the game's unique look and feel, the ease with which they can learn to play, and the ability to use real paper to accurately model many of the things they see in the game.

Learning Approach

Kids will learn about paper-crafting by experimenting with cutting and pasting virtual paper during the adventure and then later build real paper models by following detailed instructions provided by the game.

Support

Tearaway offers plenty of coaching whenever new abilities are unlocked, and the blueprint files provide all the instruction necessary for budding paper-crafters. You also can expect to find kids sharing tips online.

What kids can learn

Subjects

Arts

  • playing
  • sculpture

Hobbies

  • building
  • collecting

Skills

Thinking & Reasoning

  • solving puzzles

Creativity

  • imagination
  • making new creations

Tech Skills

  • digital creation

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 Learning Rating review was written by Chad Sapieha

Parents say

Not yet rated
Review this title!

Kids say

What's it about?

TEARAWAY is a colorful paper-craft adventure that tells the story of a small paper person journeying through a fantastical, three-dimensional paper world to deliver a message to you, the player, who appears to the paper people as a god-like entity in the sky. Available only for PlayStation Vita, it makes use of several of the system's interface features. Players can touch the console's rear panel to poke their fingers through into the game world and interact with objects. The front touch screen is used to interact with shining silver paper, which shows up as bows that can be pulled off presents and paper paths that can be unrolled. It also can be drawn on and used to cut out pieces of virtual paper to customize objects. Players use the console's motion sensors to shift things in the game world into place and the microphone to record their voices, which get played back to them at key points in the adventure. The rear camera is used to take pictures that appear on certain surfaces in the world or to capture textures that get applied to various paper creatures. The game also employs the front camera to project the player's face into the world -- for example, making him or her appear like a face within the sun. What's more, players can take pictures of creatures and objects to unlock their schematics, which they can then download and print, allowing them to recreate scenes they see in the game in real life.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

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.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about paper-crafting. What sorts of things have you built out of paper? Did this game provide you with new paper-crafting ideas? Is there anything in the game you wanted to build but for which you couldn't find and unlock instructions?

  • Families also can discuss the game's unusual meditations on message and story. What do you think is the "message" referred to throughout the game? Whose story do you experience while playing, yours or that of your little paper messenger? 

  • Have you played other games that are equally creative?

Game details

Platforms:PlayStation Vita
Price:$39.99
Available online?Not available online
Developer:Sony Computer Entertainment
Release date:November 22, 2013
Genre:Adventure
ESRB rating:E for Mild Cartoon Violence (PlayStation Vita)

This review of Tearaway was written by

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are conducted by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.

About our rating system

  • ON: Content is age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • PAUSE: Know your child; some content may not be right for some kids.
  • OFF: Not age-appropriate for kids this age.
  • NOT FOR KIDS: Not appropriate for kids of any age.

Find out more

Quality

Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

Find out more

Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

Find out more

About our buy links

When you use our links to make a purchase, Common Sense Media earns a small affiliate fee from Amazon or iTunes. As a nonprofit organization, these funds help us continue providing independent, ad-free services for educators, families, and kids while the price you pay remains the same. Thank you for your support.
Read more

See more about how we rate and review.

What parents and kids say

See all user reviews

Share your thoughts with other parents and kids Write a user review

A safe community is important to us. Please observe our guidelines

Teen, 16 years old Written bywillman72 December 2, 2013
AGE
7
QUALITY
 

my favorite vita title

this game is a fantastic vita franchise using all of the vita a highly recommended game
What other families should know
Great messages
Great role models
Too much violence
Safety and privacy concerns
Teen, 17 years old Written bysaibhandari January 3, 2015
AGE
7
QUALITY
 
LEARNING

Fun game!

This game promotes creativity as well as hand eye co-ordination! It's a very sweet game but manages to be entertaining at the same time and even when it finishes there is likely still stuff to complete! The real life papercraft feature is good for learning too! Whilst it may be suitable for those around 7 I would recommend it for people much older (I am 17 and I loved it!)
What other families should know
Great messages
Great role models
Easy to play/use

Poll

Did our review help you make an informed decision about this product?

Essential School Tools