previews\ May 7, 2009 at 8:00 pm

Katamari Forever - PS3 - Preview

Pre-E3 2009 PreviewE3 2008 GameZone Previews

Gamers either love Katamari or they steer clear of it. But there are many more in that first category than there are in the latter. Katamari launched as an innovative obsession that consumed a lot of gamers, just as the Katamari itself collected anything in its path.

Namco Bandai is gearing up to launch Katamari Forever, a PlayStation 3 exclusive that should entreat fans of the series as well as collecting a few converts along the way.

For one, the game is different graphically than it predecessors; this is, in part, due to the four graphical filters players can unlock as they play with each giving the game a unique look.

The story begins with the King getting knocked out by a comet and losing all his memories … all of them … in fact, he doesn’t even remember color. Because he doesn’t remember color, the game starts in black and white and moves into the color spectrum.

Katamari Forever PlayStation 3 screenshots

There are more than 30 levels in the game, which include both some of the classic-style Katamari levels as well as some new ones. Examples of the new? Well, how about a level where the Katamari ball doesn't actually roll up anything? Katamari Sprinkler roams the stage and delivers water to the environment, and in the wake of its passage, flowers and plants spring up.

Katamari Forever is a blend of old and new. There is a new character (of course the new look) but the music is the same – only rearranged and remixed. And the game very much takes the power of the PS3 into account, utilizing the SIXAXIS controller for motion-based movement elements. The game’s selection screens have also been changed.

While there was no hands-on time available during the Namco Bandai pre-E3 event held in San Francisco (the game had not been fully translated from Japanese to English, though it is not slated to release until fall of this year), it appears that the game will carry on the legacy of the franchise quite well and perhaps even take it to the next level.

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