Time to time

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Alejandra Rangel
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Unless you resort to the PSone or PSP catalog, the shoot 'em up genre has always been missing in Vita's already scarce software offer. Super Stardust Delta is partly approaching this niche, but the fasting of fans is finally over thanks to the release on PSN of Sine Mora. After conquering Xbox 360 and PC users, the Digital Reality and Grasshopper shooter finally lands on Sony consoles, but on this occasion we wanted to focus on the portable version, to find out if the frenetic and spectacular experience of the game maintains the same charm too. on the small screen of Vita.

For a more complete opinion on the home version we suggest you read the article published on the occasion of the launch on XBLA. Catapulted into the fascinating world of Seol, the player is told an absolutely atypical story for the genre, the result of cross-influences coming from the Japanese culture behind Grasshopper and from the Eastern European styles of Digital Reality. The Eternal War fought by imperials and rebels is a seemingly never-ending conflict, thanks to the ability of one of the two factions to make time jumps and take refuge in different places and eras. An apparent mix between Battlestar Galactica and Star Wars, behind which, however, are hidden characters that are anything but conventional, like anthropomorphic beings moved by blackmail or the desire for revenge. The plot is however communicated through rather simple means, with the predominant use of text-only screens and dialogues between the various characters.

Tic, tac, boom!

While it may seem like a disengagement, it is instead evident the intention of the developers to find a compromise that does not upset the purists of the genre: the short dialogue interludes and the scripted scenes that interrupt the action can in fact be accelerated with the pressure of a button, a function that satisfies those who want to launch themselves in the midst of volleys of bullets without too much chatter. Where though Sine Mora it stands out from other bullet hell is in its game mechanics entirely based on the passage of time and the ability to rewind it.

You are not destroyed with a single hit, nor is there a health bar that decreases gradually, but for each damage suffered the level timer receives a penalty, leading to game over once it reaches zero. The collection of power-ups becomes so essential, not only to increase the attack power of your aircraft, but also to reload the timer and have enough time to complete the level. Added to this is the ability to temporarily slow down everything that happens on the screen, so you can zigzag between bullets and clean up your opponents.

PlayStation 3 Trophies

Given the shortness of the main campaign, it's good that there is so much to do in the extra modes, with a whole host of challenges and Trophies keeping the player busy. To rank up (and therefore unlock the equivalent Trophy) it is necessary to complete a series of tasks, ranging from crashing into a certain number of enemies to completing a level with maximum marks, passing through the use of a specific empowering or destroying a certain amount of opponents.

Life is beautiful

It is remarkable how everything is perfectly usable even on Vita: in the most frenetic moments the screen fills with a shower of bullets, yet the smaller screen does not represent a major handicap for the player, and indeed allows you to have a more complete view of that. what's happening. Of course, on Sony's portable console it is more difficult to appreciate in detail the enormous work done by the developers in terms of graphics, but even on the magnificent OLED screen the visual impact remains excellent and, above all, quite fluid, with a high frame rate even in more chaotic moments and in the epic battles with the mammoth bosses. Those who expected big enrichments given by the tactile functionality of Vita will be partially disappointed, but from such a precise and frenetic shoot 'em up, also designed for traditional control systems, we did not expect otherwise. As already happens on smartphones and tablets, the player is in fact free to move the plane by dragging a finger on the touchscreen, but clearly this is a very inconvenient and inaccurate solution, and in the blink of an eye you end up returning to prefer keys. and analog stick. The most original addition does not in any way affect the gameplay of Sine Mora: Using the console's GPS, you can unlock a whole series of beautiful concept art simply by leaving the house and covering a certain distance with the game in the background. It still feels the weight of a rather short campaign, although to make up for the huge delay of the PSN version, the authors have added an exclusive plane to unlock and use in the arcade mode or the boss battle option. This is a tiny novelty, but enough to make the Vita version the richest in terms of content. If you add to this the portability factor it is evident how Sine Mora represent a must for shoot 'em up fans in possession of Sony's portable console.


Version tested: PlayStation 3, PlayStation Vita Digital Delivery: PlayStation Network Price: € 9,99 Resources4Gaming.com


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Your vote

Despite the constant postponements, the expectation of PSN users has been rewarded with what in some ways is the best edition of one of the funniest and most spectacular shoot 'em ups of recent times. If the portable version makes compromises from a graphic point of view, it is the possibility of enjoying the game at any time and place that represents the most evident plus, not to mention the additional contents that, although they can be counted on the fingers of one hand, go to embellish a spectacular experience but which unfortunately suffers from a fairly short campaign.


  • Original and fun mechanics
  • Graphically excellent
  • Numerous extras and unlockables
  • Marginal add-on content
  • Short story mode
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