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PlayStation Vita  header logo


Hands-on with Fez for PS Vita: Another indie classic for Sony's handheld

You can leave your hat on

Product: Fez | Developer: Polytron | Genre: 3D, Adventure, Conversion, Platform, Puzzle | Networking: wireless (network)
For: PS Vita
Fez PS Vita, thumbnail 1
Sitting forlornly on a Sony stand at Gamescom last week, Fez for the PS Vita seemed a sorry spectacle at first. Hardly anybody seemed interested.

This was in stark contrast with the hype that surrounded the original Xbox 360 release last April. It seems that everyone's a bit Fez-ed out by this point, and I don't blame them - the story of Fez's development, release and postmortem has been a tiring ordeal.

But it's worth remembering what all the fuss was about in the first place. Fez is a fantastic and unique platform-puzzler, and if you haven't played it before this Vita port should definitely be on your wishlist.

Hats off

You play as Gomez, a small 2D creature who can rotate his 2D world and reach the hidden third dimension.

By tapping the shoulder buttons, you're able to spin the world 90 degrees and glimpse its 3D form - however, each time the land settles after a rotation it's back to plain old 2D.

This technique can be used to help Gomez reach further and further into each level. For example, a higher-up platform might be inaccessible from one angle, but if you spin the world around, climb up a ladder on the rear, and then spin the camera back, suddenly you're up close and personal with it.

Fez is all about exploration and secrets. There are no enemies, and the only way to die is by falling. You're simply left to scour every nook and cranny for a door, a cube piece, or any sort of element that can help you reach further into the world.

Oh, and in case you hadn't noticed from the various screenshots and video scattered around the internet, this is a gorgeous game. You'll spend the first 15 minutes or so just spinning the camera around to see the effect in all its glory.

Go go Gomez

As I hinted above, Fez is also very much about secrets. It's about uncovering some of the most ridiculous and deep puzzles you'll have ever encountered in a game.

Fez's world has its own alphabet. It has a numbering system, and some of the puzzles require you tackle them at a specific time of the real-life day. You won't just need to keep your wits about you - you'll need a pad of paper by your side to scribble down hypotheses and potential solutions.

I'm not joking - you should see the crazed scrawlings of Pocket Gamer's own Mark Brown from when the game hit Xbox 360 last year. I'm fairly certain Fez drove him doolally.

From my time with Vita version, we can expect an identical experience to that of the console and PC version - including the occasional graphical slowdown, unfortunately. Still, it's a while until the game comes out on Vita, so hopefully these issues will be resolved.

Either way, it's going to be an essential purchase if you haven't played the game already. The PS Vita is proving to be the indie game console of choice.

Reviewer photo
Mike Rose 29 August 2013
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Sep 2013
Post count:
Ant Clifford | 18:42 - 6 September 2013
Do you know an approximate release date for this Vita version? I'm very much looking forward to it!
Aug 2012
Post count:
Paul Taeles | 22:33 - 30 August 2013
Hopefully it shows up as a full vita title and not a mobile one. I like that sony's mobile app store is picking up pace finally but sony dosent let those games use the trophy system which I find highly annoying :/
Feb 2013
Post count:
@xxxAcesHighxxx | 17:35 - 29 August 2013
I've only had an all too brief sampling of Fez on a pals 360 - but I loved it, and am really excited for it's upcoming Vita debut. Essential you say, Mike? Absolutely!