Feature: Do You Remember These PlayStation Branded Mobile Phone Spin-Offs?
Posted by Sammy Barker
PlayStation All-Stars Island is not the first of its kind
Sony shocked, embarrassed, and tickled PlayStation fans today with the announcement of PlayStation All-Stars Island – a summery smartphone cash-in that sees first-party favourites such as Sackboy and Nathan Drake cameo in a collection of copycat minigames. But while brand diehards deplore the iOS and Android spin-off, we figured that the announcement offered a fitting opportunity to take a look at some of the platform holder’s previous mobile phone marketing efforts. Do any of these games ring a bell? Give yourself a swig of Coke Zero if they do – and spit it back out if you actually played any of them.
God of War: Betrayal
Arguably the most well-known of Sony’s mobile phone endeavours, God of War: Betrayal was the culmination of a combined effort between SOE Los Angeles, WayForward Technologies, and Sony Pictures Digital. The adventure picked up shortly after the conclusion of the first instalment in Sony Santa Monica’s deity destroying series, and was presented from a 2.5D perspective. The pocketable title’s ability to transpose many of the elements from the popular PlayStation 2 releases – including puzzles and distinctive chains-based combat – actually earned it a lot of plaudits at the time, but it was utterly outshined less than a year after its release by Ready at Dawn’s stunning PlayStation Portable prequel, God of War: Chains of Olympus.
Ratchet & Clank: Going Mobile
Ratchet & Clank: Going Mobile was developed by Sony Pictures Mobile, and found PlayStation’s most popular platforming double-act trapped inside a, well, cellphone. Released around the same time as PS2 sequel Ratchet: Deadlocked, the game adopted the guise of a classic side-scroller. Despite its mobile origins, though, it was still packed to the rafters with wacky weapons – including the infamous Boarzooka, which transformed your folly into innocent pigs – as well as gold bolts, arena challenges, and lots, lots more. A sequel dubbed Ratchet & Clank: Clone Home was actually in production, but unsurprisingly never saw the light of day.
Reality Fighters Dojo
Ironically constructed by Zoink Games – the same Swedish-based studio behind PlayStation All-Stars Island – Reality Fighters Dojo was released around the same time as the PlayStation Vita, and was distributed as part of a cross-promotional campaign with Taco Bell. The title was pitched as a micro version of Novarama’s augmented reality brawler, and saw you using your smartphone or tablet to punch, er, green peppers and ultimately earn enough points to win one of Sony’s shiny new handhelds. Apparently it was downloaded almost a million times, which makes us wonder what’s wrong with the world.
SOCOM: U.S. Navy SEALs: Mobile Recon
The spin-off that started it all, SOCOM: U.S. Navy SEALs: Mobile Recon ditched the third-person action of its PS2 counterpart and adopted an isometric viewpoint instead. Similar to the Rainbow Six titles that Gameloft crafted for the hot mobile devices of the time, the title found you infiltrating a surprisingly detailed Middle Eastern setting, taking out bad guys with explosives, sub-machine guns, and sniper rifles. Despite being the mobile spin-off that no one seems to remember, this was actually one of the best – it even included a vehicular shootout segment similar to the one in Uncharted 2: Among Thieves. At least Naughty Dog played the game, huh?
Do you remember any of these mobile phone spin-offs? Do you think that Sony should release more of these types of titles for marketing reasons? Let us know in the comments section below.
Do you think that Sony should promote more games with phone apps? (26 votes)
Yes, it seems like a harmless way of getting the message out
I’m not really sure how I feel about this
No, it waters down the brand and feels like a cheap strategy
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