Chimpact Review—Port Supreme
One of the things I don’t like about ports, especially late ones, is how they are treated. They mostly are inferior compared to the versions released on the original platforms. It comes across to me as if most of these developers are more interested in promoting the original platform than their very own game. This is not just endemic to the PS Mobile platform but was also in Minis. Even studios with more than enough resources drop the ball in porting their games (see Angry Birds; granted, the original developers didn’t actually do the porting job for this title, but still, you just can’t hand over your popular IP carelessly). All that, of course, with a higher price tag. I won’t rant any longer, since I’d be your stereotypical video game reviewer with too much self-entitlement.
Let it be said right here and now, however, Chimpact is one really nice port.
Chimpact uses a portrait orientation. If you don’t like to look funny playing your Vita, you might steer away from this one, but you would miss a lot. I find it inexcusable for any Vita game to look ugly, since the OLED screen does really help whatever graphics you have, with things popping up, colors burning brightly, contrasts being clearer. Chimpact is gorgeous in the graphics department, but you can tell it is not using the Vita’s native resolution, with a jagged silhouette here and there. Just nitpicking, though.
The game is clearly aimed at kids, though adults that are obsessive completionists may find this game a surprising gem. Chimpact is a launcher game that is loose in its objectives, but it can get a little manic once you discover there are lots to grab per level. You launch a chimpanzee from the bottom of the level to the highest point, though as you progress, levels seem to vary in that you have to move in different directions as opposed to just going up and up. In the strictest sense, all you have to do is send the chimp to the exit point regardless of how much you collect, but gems are used in unlocking levels, and you can’t progress without unlocking the levels—I just stated the very obvious. You also collect bananas, and while at first they seem useless, they serve as “lives” when later levels introduce enemies that hurt you (think Sonic and his gold rings).
The amount of content is enormous, indeed, with shops, two different campaign-like modes with an ample amount of levels and worlds, a “survival” mode, and a bevy of achievements that get announced in real time. I do have complaints, though, with the loading times, especially when booting up the game. It takes longer than a full retail game. Again, nitpicking, since it is not that long, but it is quite noticeable. However, one thing for sure, the game does not penalize you for taking an infinite number of tries to launch that chimp, which could have been implemented by adding difficulty settings for people who want additional challenge. This would need an overhaul for the game, though, because the controls are not perfect. They are pretty good, but they need further polishing. Well, Chimpact is for children, but it should be equally enjoyable to anyone who likes great games that are more than worth the asking price.