One of the reasons I have been so passionate about PlayStation Mobile is that it has offered smaller developers the chance to bring truly unique titles to the PlayStation Vita. While Sony have encouraged and actively supported indie developers in bringing games to various PlayStation platforms, PSM has allowed an incredibly diverse catalogue of titles to be released, many of which would never have seen the light of day otherwise simply because they were too unique or specialised to have had any commercial viability as “regular” PS Vita releases.
Journey Of The Wind, by Katy Pilman (known on the PSN Store as GTAWWEKID) is one such title. Instead of the usual game or app that we’ve come to expect from PlayStation Mobile, this small title is a work of fiction that you would normally expect to find released through Amazon on the Kindle Store. It’s the only one of its kind on PlayStation Mobile, but is it worth getting?
First off, Journey Of The Wind is one of the most famous – or should that be infamous PlayStation Mobile titles ever released. Upon first hitting the store it came with a high price tag… a very high price tag in fact and was notorious for being the most expensive PSM release ever, coming in at over £20, more than many digital AAA games on the Vita. Shortly after it was dropped in price to just under £5 and it has now received a third price drop to the bottom price point that it possible for PlayStation Mobile of 40p. Now, I’ve talked about pricing for PSM releases in the past and I strongly believe that this does have an impact on the sale of games etc on the store and there is a “sweet spot” that gamers won’t go over when it comes to buying games. No matter how good a game or app is, as soon as that upper price point is reached developers simply won’t sell copies unless it’s something truly spectacular so kudos to Katy Pilman for dropping the price.
Onto the title itself and it’s a short story set shortly after a war that has broken out between America and a far Eastern country. Parts of America end up under attack and as a result these States have been instructed to evacuate to safer areas and a journey of one family and the devastating events they endure along the way. Sounds good? To start off with you would think that this title does have potential but right from the start alarm bells start ringing in your head.
There’s no user interface when reading this story and as you start to progress through the prose you quickly understand why. To move through the text you can either use the touch screen or d-pad… and that’s it. There are no controls for changing pages, chapters or anything. In fact, there’s no contents page for chapters or feature to jump between sections of the e-book so you begin to wonder how you’re going to find your place or remember just where you are in the story. Until you start to scroll down and read it…
That’s because Journey Of The Wind is incredibly short. Taking my time I read the whole story from start to finish in under seven minutes. Had I paid the original price for this I would have been outraged. If I’d paid the revised price or around £5 I would have been furious but even at this bottom line price of 40p I’m not particularly impressed. As a writer, it’s taken me longer to craft this review than it has to read the story that I am writing about and that genuinely worried me. Distributing this through the PSN Store on PlayStation Mobile certainly didn’t feel like the most appropriate place for this and reading through it and its brevity a more suitable option – and certainly for a first time author as is clearly the case here – would have been as one of the free titles through the Kindle Store that I mentioned earlier.
Now I say that Katy is a first time author but how do I reach that conclusion? Sadly the text is littered with punctuation errors, poor grammar, words and phrases used that simply make no sense and narrative that should be lavish and expansive for what are major plot elements that are incredibly brief and condensed into mere sentences. Without giving too much detail away, a large plot point that happens in the story – a disaster that would attract headline news in the media – is reduced to just a few sentences from start to finish. The rest of the story is laced with elements that make little or no sense and leaves the reader struggling to get through the piece.
As much as I want to support PlayStation Mobile developers, there really isn’t anything noteworthy of this titles for me to be able to recommend this to anyone. Even at this entry-level price, it’s a title to avoid at all costs.
At A Glance
- Title: Journey Of The Wind
- Publisher: Katy Pilman
- System: PlayStation Mobile
- Format: PSN Download
- Cross Buy: N / A
- Cross Save: N / A
- Cross Play: N / A
- Online Multiplayer: N / A
- Local Multiplayer: N / A
- PlayStation TV Compatible: Yes
- Memory Card Space Needed: 5Mb