Touch My Katamari

Common Sense Media says

More sticky-ball rolling fun, but nothing new.

Age(i)

2
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17

Quality(i)

 

What parents need to know

Positive messages

The game teaches players to be persistent, even in the face of criticism. (The King is often a discouraging or condescending voice, but that doesn't stop the Prince from trying.) That patience is also required in later levels, when meeting the game's requirements is more challenging. 

Positive role models

The King is hardly a positive influence. He's overly critical, self-obsessed, and worried only about adulation by people. (He cringes when compared to a principal.) That self-absorbed attitude, though, is the key to the game's humor. Another character, Goro, puts off studying so he can play video games and surf the Internet. But the prince is an obedient son.

Ease of play

The game has a decent tutorial and shows movement combinations onscreen to familiarize players with the controls. Learning how to maneuver a Katamari takes a little bit of time, but once it's mastered, the game is suitably challenging without becoming frustrating. 

Violence

The Katamari, a big sticky ball, runs over objects and people, adding them to its size. People may yelp, but no suffering is depicted. Gunshots can be heard when you're near police officers, but are never shown. 

Sex

One of the characters you meet is obsessed with "babes" and in one scene struggles to decide whether to buy a magazine that is hinted to be adult-themed. The king also wears a tight-fitting body suit with a sizable bulge in front. 

Language
Not applicable
Consumerism

The game's introductory screen on the Vita offers a link to the Katamari store -- and there's another way to visit it in-game. Here players can buy items for the King, new music tracks, and game modes. 

Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable
Privacy & safety

Moderate privacy and safety concerns. Using the "near" virtual communication system for PS Vita, players can exchange information with others and receive "Buddy Requests."

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that Touch My Katamari is a portable version of the popular puzzle/arcade game. As with other titles in the series, players will try to build the biggest ball of objects they can, under the sarcastic and discouraging eye of the King of All Cosmos. The King is a pompous buffoon, but his attitude is played humorously. His body-suit is skin-tight, though, and might be a bit too revealing for younger players. The game asks players to run over objects to collect them, and people caught in the stickiness may yelp, but no one is shown as hurt.

Parents say

Not yet rated
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Kids say

What's it about?

Under orders from the King of All Cosmos, a small prince must gather items of various sizes onto a Katamari, a sticky ball, by rolling it over them. Players can now morph the shape of the Katamari (which has historically always been a ball) using the Vita's touchscreen controls.

TOUCH MY KATAMARI has a separate story, which has nothing to do with gameplay: When a child asks his father whether the King of All Cosmos or his principal is greater, the father hesitates. As he considers the answer, the mother dubs them \"equally awesome\". Overhearing this sends the king, a megalomaniac, into a depression and he commands the Prince to gather more Katamari so that he might win back people's admiration.

Is it any good?

QUALITY
 

Like previous Katamari games, this entry in the series is mainly about pushing a ball around and gathering objects to make it bigger. There are often time limits in which to accomplish this and minimum sizes you must achieve, but it's basically the same goal on each level. It's fun, addictive gameplay, but there's very little that hasn't been a part of previous installments. 

The series trademark humor is intact -- and it even winks at the string of disappointing past sequels. Unfortunately, Touch My Katamari does not move things forward enough to stand out from the pack. While it's a very good portable version of the game, the series has been around long enough that there doesn't seem a need to take it on the go. True fans will have fun -- but can probably wait until the price drops. 

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about why it's important to keep trying, even when the people you're working for aren't encouraging. Families can also discuss how a positive attitude can make monotonous work more enjoyable. 

  • When playing a puzzle game like this one, in what ways does this game make you think?

Game details

Platforms:PlayStation Vita
Price:$29.99
Available online?Not available online
Developer:Namco Bandai
Release date:February 21, 2012
Genre:Puzzle
Topics:Magic and fantasy, Princesses and fairies
ESRB rating:E10+ for Comic Mischief, Mild Fantasy Violence, Mild Suggestive Themes (PlayStation Vita)

This review of Touch My Katamari was written by

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.

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Quality

Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

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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.

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Teen, 17 years old Written byPlime March 20, 2014
AGE
8
QUALITY
 

Hilariously Strange Game

This game is the very definition of unique; rolling around collecting things to feed a hungry king is simple yet extremely addictive, and I can imagine that children would love the idea of progressively building larger and larger balls to feed the king. This game has an extremely cartoonish look, and most "people" look more like LEGO figures than living creatures. Still, it could be considered a bit evil when you actually think about what you're doing, as you roll up cats, birds and school kids into a massive ball to give to a giant king with a very VERY strange outfit... Anyway, point is, don't think too deeply about what you're actually doing in the game and it could be deemed appropriate for just about anyone.
What other families should know
Easy to play/use

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