Review: Chronovolt

Aggh, this game looks so pretty when still, and yet plays in rather a frustrating way. The lovingly illustrated but thin plot sees our heroine Jessica chasing a moustachioed villain through time and space in a series of Chronosphere time machines (which you can buy as paid DLC).

To keep up with him you need to navigate through the course, collecting Chronovolt power-ups for your sphere and keys to access some parts of the level. The power comes in use when zapping nasties and rewinding time when you screw up and fall off the level, or recovering from a tricky part of the level, a neat gimmick.

There are two objectives for each level, a target time and collecting all the power ups. However, a couple of gremlins in the works, conversations that can't be skipped which break up the flow and some frame-rate and camera issues hobble the game somewhat. If you can put up with them, then there's a fun puzzle platform game to work your way carefully through, avoid the many pitfalls, tricks, traps and enemy spheres. But every time there's a jerky glitch or wobble, it makes me want to throw my Vita across the room.

It would also be good to see rally points in some of the more advanced levels, as the grim realisation I have to go through the slog and grind of some parts really makes me want to aim for the quit button. And once you've done a level only sadomasochists will want to go back and get maximum points, which you might need to open up further levels.

It kind of reminds my of GripShift, the PSP racing puzzle game, but that was so friendly and enticing that you could spend ages trying to beat it. This will do for a diversion and might suit more players of a more focused mind-set than me, but a few basic flaws let it down rather badly.

Price: £4.99 (PSN, currently free to PS+ subscribers)
Score: 6/10
Progress: Frozen out in China
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