The title, Kahoots, will mark the biggest release in Honeyslug's relatively short history, with a fairly large push from Sony themselves as they get the PSP Minis service off the ground.
Ironically, as big as this title is, Honeyslug spent just £30 creating the artwork for the title. In many ways, this encapsulates everything that PSP Minis stand for.
"Since Nat had done a animation degree, focusing mainly on stop-motion plasticine animation, and Ricky was a dab hand in Photoshop, we decided to bypass the route of paying an artist to create polished assets for us, and instead make all the art ourselves with the strict rule that everything in the game would be real either scanned, photographed or hand-drawn," writes Honeyslug honcho Mark Inman on the Playstation Blog.
"We set a budget of £30, and went down our local high street buying things for the game buttons, beads and fabrics from the local haberdashery, sweets and chocolates in the pound shop and of course, loads of plasticine for the characters!"</blockquote>
As a result, you get a title with an extremely whimsical presentation. Think LittleBigPlanet crossed with Grandma's knitting and you're on the right line of thought.
Cementing the charm of the game is the tutorial singing Pegbeast — an interesting anecdote to the kind of creatures that can be concocted from pegs and buttons. The songs were written and performed by Honeyslug's own, Ricky, and the arrangements were completed by his brother Rob.
In terms of gameplay, Kahoots is a combination of Zoo Keeper and Lemmings. Players use a cursor to swap adjacent blocks each with different properties. The properties of these blocks can be used to guide the game's characters - Kahoots - around the 2D levels and towards the exit. So the concept is relatively simple in principle, but the introduction of more challenging elements such as Cardborgs - nasty creatures which can rip apart cardboard blockages - keep the gameplay fresh throughout its 60 levels. "You often have to juggle things around in order to keep both Kahoots and Cardborgs alive, without allowing them to make contact," continues Mark.
Kahoots looks set to epitomise the do-it-yourself philosophy of PSP Minis. We can't wait for it to launch on the Playstation Store tomorrow for just £2.49. Look out for our review soon.