This is a new high bar for remaking games. From now on, Tearaway sits in a category all of its own. So much is new, that it’s almost closer to a sequel than a remake: a vastly longer end-game, as well as a changed introduction, entirely new controls, revamped existing levels to fit those controls – this is an astonishing version of an already terrific game. By the time the eight hour campaign comes to a close you will be enraptured, and truly feeling the love from Media Molecule towards its creation. The best Vita game just became one of the best PS4 games. Utterly essential, you must buy Tearaway Unfolded, so it can finally get the love it so richly deserves.
Sadly, the pacing issues just grind the smiles away and unravel an otherwise elegant experience. Were it not for the dragging of the feet in later chapters, Tearaway Unfolded would be a must-have PS4 release. As it stands, it’s a damn lovely game that nonetheless doesn’t need to be clamored for.
Likable, yet not as lovable as it deserves to be.
Now rest in peace, PlayStation Vita.
Tearaway Unfolded successfully translates so many aspects of the original. It remains a distinctive experience which celebrates creativity and fun with undimmed enthusiasm and invention, and along the way asks you to do things very few games do – whether that’s designing a snowflake or christening a baby wendigo. It takes a familiar controller and makes you play with it in a different way. Its new areas unsurprisingly offer fun and fresh ideas, but they definitely feel crammed into the narrative of the original which suffers as a consequence. Tearaway Unfolded is a big and bold adaptation, but lacks some of the original's intimate charm.
Of course, some rubbish platforming here and there doesn’t hit Tearaway as hard as it might other games. Media Molecule isn’t doing Super Meatboy here. It’s a great testament to the game’s optimistic personality and detailed construction that you never quite think of it as just another platformer or an action title. But even accepting it as a whimsical object to be touched and toyed with, there's an inkling of trouble throughout: Tearaway Unfolded is a tad too thin, even for paper.
Tearaway Unfolded is so imaginitive that you'll feel yourself wanting to applaud it at points. An occasionally clunky camera and some narrative issues do threaten to screw up this paper-based platformer, but the quirky controls and sheer variety of the gameplay will keep a smile glued to your face. Pitch-perfect presentation and a well-executed conclusion ensure that this remixed release is in tip-top shape, while the sheer wealth of collectibles give it value long after the credits roll.
I never wanted a sequel to Tearaway, nor did I want a remaster. What we've got with Unfolded is something that's somewhere in the middle, and somehow achieves more than a typical sequel or remaster ever could. It's a fresh take on the same ideas that made Tearaway so good, and even if the different hardware means it doesn't capture that feeling of "holding a world in your hand" as well as the Vita game, Unfolded is still a must-play for anyone with a PS4, regardless of whether or not you've played the original.
Tearaway was a game deserving of a much greater audience than the one that it got on the PS Vita, but Unfolded goes a long way beyond simply trying to port that game across to the PS4. It reimagines many of the ways you interact with the game’s papercraft world and it expands and builds upon some of the ideas in the handheld version, yet never strays too far from what was already a wonderful experience.