I think I bought it while it was in one of SCEE's ludicrously cheap sales. I played it for maybe five-minutes after purchase and then never touched it again. But yesterday was a Bank Holiday here in the UK - a.k.a. "Sit On Your Ass And Do Nothing For 12 Hours" Day. So for some reason, I decided to load up High Velocity Bowling.
What I found is one of the best implementations of Sony's SIXAXIS control-method. It takes a while to get your head around it - you hold the DualShock as though it's a suit-case handle, using the L2 and R2 triggers to operate spin and the motion controls to aim and throw. It's fiddly holding the controller sideways, but I was surprised at how much depth the developers had factored into the game. Unlike its direct comparison, Wii Sports Bowling, High Velocity Bowling is literally teeming with content.
I often felt playing Wii Sports Bowling that I could score a decent game if I stood dead centrally and bowled as hard as I could at the centre pin. There's some of that in High Velocity Bowling, but the essence of the game is based on the Spin controls. Essentially, once you've lined up your shot you need to apply just the right amount of spin by holding the R2 or L2 button just as you release the ball. It's amazingly difficult to get your shot line-up, spin and throw strength all perfect, but when you do land it, you'll often end up with the super-satisfying sound of pins crashing to the ground. The thing about High Velocity bowling is that there's some serious depth I didn't expect. Characters, balls, badges, trophies, costumes - you name it, they're there to unlock. It's not just the depth in content though - there are different types of greased surfaces to bowl on, requiring you to change your strategy on the fly. And of course there's online multiplayer.
The problem really is the controls. High Velocity Bowling definitely is one of the best implementations of the SIXAXIS control mechanics, like I said. Alas, that's just not good enough. You never feel like you're truly in control of the ball because your movements are essentially just triggering animations. Which brings me to the Playstation Move.
I'm aware Sony has committed to a patch that will make High Velocity Bowling Move-enabled. That's a good start, but it won't fix the problems. It'll make your swing more accurate, but you still won't feel in control of the ball. Which is why we need a direct sequel to High Velocity Bowling instead.
I'm ready for more ridiculous characters, more stages, more balls, more content. All of that. But with Playstation Move on the horizon, I'm ready for much deeper controls. Let me feel in control of the ball. Let me apply spin without the aid of buttons.
High Velocity Bowling is actually a really good game, but it suffers from the inaccuracies of the hardware it takes advantage of. Playstation Move could ultimately solve that. I hope it's in development.
Twiggy is an anonymous PushSquare columnist who has been spotted in three major cities across the globe. Its rumoured hes on the run from the British monarchy.