Ace Banana PSVR Review
Ace Banana is the first game I have played for PlayStation VR (PSVR). As with most launch titles for the PSVR, the concept is quite simple and shallow. Ace Banana is a first person archery game where it’s your responsibility to defend bananas against monkeys who are attempting to steal the fruit.
Ace Banana is a very easy game to pickup and play making it perfect for all ages. Upon putting on the VR headset you’re immediately immersed in a colourful and beautiful 3D world that makes you feel like you’re the only hope for those delicious bananas. The game’s control scheme works well for the most part, but there are some moments where it can feel overly sensitive. This mostly happens when you’re trying to land long distance shots on the enemy.
“Ace Banana is a very easy game to pickup and play making it perfect for all ages.”
The game see’s you face wave after wave of monkeys with each progressive wave getting more difficult. Every fourth or fifth wave throws in a boss battle to change things up. Now you would expect a game built on a shallow setup like this would get boring, but it doesn’t. Ace Banana does a great job of varying the enemies it throws at you and the way in which the main level is designed.
There are several types of monkeys you’ll face including armored monkeys, boxing monkeys, flying monkeys and even monkeys on pogo sticks. Some monkeys can block and throw attacks your way, while others can sustain a lot more damage. In addition to this, the environment you play in has three different “levels” or “platforms”. On each platform is a group of bananas, so you’ll need to teleport between each platform depending on where the enemies are attacking from. This is where the gameplay becomes really well varied as the lower platform only sees you fight ground monkeys, while the higher platform sees you fight monkeys with jetpacks. It’s elements like this that make fighting each wave feeling fresh and fun.
One thing Ace Banana could do a better job of is explaining how certain elements of the game work. There really is no good tutorial that explains how power ups work. When you kill certain enemies they’ll sometimes drop power ups which you can then use. Some of these power ups work for you, while other’s work against you. For example, one power up ties rocks to your arrows so you can only shoot a few feet in front of you while other’s let you shoot multiple arrows in one shot and take down multiple enemies. These power ups are fairly easy to understand, but then others like a floating clove of garlic don’t really make a whole lot of sense.
Another gripe I have with the game is that there are no checkpoints. If you fail, you have to start from Wave 1. While getting through each wave doesn’t take an extraordinary amount of time, your arms do start to hurt after shooting a lot of arrows. It would have been nice if the game implemented some sort of checkpoint system as I frequently found myself dying during the boss battles.
Ace Banana is a solid introduction to the PSVR. Its easily accessible controls, rewarding gameplay and low price tag (only $14.99 on PlayStation Store until Oct 27th) make this a launch title that should satisfy the whole family this holiday season.
**PS4 Code Provided By the Publisher***
- Fun gameplay
- Varied enemies
- Great game for all ages
- Easily accessible
- No checkpoints
- Game could use a better tutorial
- Controls can sometimes be sensitive