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Beautiful Katamari

Beautiful Katamari

Beautiful Katamari

Beautiful Katamari, released in Japan as Beautiful Katamari Damacy , is a video game by Namco Bandai for the Xbox 360. Beautiful Katamari is the fourth game in the Katamari series of games following Katamari Damacy, We Love Katamari and Me & My Katamari.

Beautiful Katamari has gained extra attention because it was originally scheduled as a PlayStation 3 title in addition to the Xbox 360, but development on the PlayStation 3 was abandoned and Katamari Forever was released for that console instead. All previous Katamari games have been exclusively available on Sony consoles .

Beautiful Katamari Plot

The game opens with the King of All Cosmos, his Queen, and the Prince, enjoying some tennis while on vacation. However, a powerful serve by the King causes the tennis ball to rip through the fabric of the universe, creating a black hole that sucks everything but the planet Earth into it. In order to correct it, the King commands the Prince to roll up katamaris on Earth to recreate the planets, sun, and other celestial features. Once the Prince completes this, the King then orders him to create a katamari large enough to plug up the black hole and restore order to the universe. The Prince then rolls up enough stuff to create the "Super Giant", a very large Katamari that he then clogs up the black hole with. In the end, the black hole is stopped and the King of All Cosmos takes all the credit for stopping it.

Beautiful Katamari Gameplay

The core gameplay from the Katamari Damacy series is unchanged; the player, as the diminutive Prince, controls a "katamari" to collect objects smaller than the katamari, causing the katamari to grow and collect even larger objects, as to meet various objectives given by the King of All Cosmos. After successfully clearing any level once, the player can then attempt a time attack challenge on that level to make a katamari of a given size in the shortest time possible. Eternal modes, where the player is allowed to roll without any time limits, are available once a perfect score is obtained on a level.

In Beautiful Katamari, players are urged to build katamari with specific types of items. For example, to make the planet Mercury, the King asks the player to collect liquids. After successfully completing the task, the player is rated on time, size, and the number of objects meeting the King's request. Another level requires that the player roll up only hot items and avoid cold items to raise the katamari's temperature to 10,000 degrees Celsius.

Beautiful Katamari is the first game in the series to support high-definition television resolutions of 720p, 1080i and 1080p. Multiplayer modes include 2 player support on the same console and 24 player support over Xbox Live in both cooperative and competitive modes. One of the online battle types is a "Thingy Battle", similar to a mode in We Love Katamari, where each player must collect the most of a specific type of item. Game lobbies include simple mini-games.

The game tracks all progress by the player in the various modes and shares this data through Xbox Live to allow the player to compare their performance to others, including on normal request levels, time attacks, and online play performance (tracked as "cookies" awarded by the King). A "worldwide katamari", representing the total size of all objects rolled up by all Xbox Live players and the player's contribution to that, is also available.

Reception
Beautiful Katamari received mixed reviews from critics. Official Xbox Magazine stated, "It clearly aims to include everyone and exclude no one, and that's just plain refreshing amid a holiday season stuffed full of deadly serious, high-learning-curve me-toos." IGN gave the game a 7.8 out of 10, calling Beautiful Katamari "a welcome addition to the barren category of family friendly games on 360," but also found fault in the game's short length and the lack of evolution in the Katamari series. Other critics lamented the lack of originality in Beautiful Katamari. Game Informer Online called the game the "ugly duckling" of the Katamari series, praising the new multiplayer facilities but calling the environments "dull and lifeless." Import-centric UK site NTSC-uk gave it 6/10 saying "When throwing in the short nature of the game and the lack of loving care to the little things that seemed to be lavished on its predecessors... then fans of the series may be left feeling somewhat disappointed. Newcomers will no doubt discover the reason why so many people hold the series very dear to their heart..."

As of December 27, 2007, Beautiful Katamari is the 25th best-selling Xbox 360 title in Japan at 24,186 copies sold.


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