Astro’s Playroom is a 3D platformer published by Sony Interactive Entertainment and is exclusive to the PlayStation 5. The game comes pre-installed on every console and is essentially a ‘tech demo’ to get users to grips with the DualSense controller.
As mentioned in my PlayStation 5 review, I was actually just wanting to pass some time before Spider-Man Miles Morales installed when I first played Astro’s Playroom. Little did I know, I would spend the next few hours completing the game in one playthrough!
The main ‘story’ focuses on four worlds, all themed on different components of the console. Each world consists of four levels with two of these levels being classic platforming and the other two levels involving a special suit or a power up, making full use of the DualSense controller.
Even if you were to use a regular PS4 controller, this game would still be great fun, but the use of the DualSense in the game makes it simply magnificent. From the DualSense vibrating ever so gently with the sound of rain echoing out of the controller to walking through a muddy bog and the controller actually providing a little lag. This showcase of the DualSense’s capabilities feels special and means each and every level plays differently to the last.
For a game which is free with all PlayStation 5’s, I was really blown away with the games charm and fun. This game is by no means difficult, but there is plenty to collect and explore, including a number of trophies to unlock which give the game around a 6/7 hour full playthrough time which I think is fantastic for a free launch title. Some of the trophies are genuinely so fun to collect too that you’ll actually be disappointed to collect the platinum trophy, knowing there are no more to collect.
There are plenty of homages to the history of PlayStation, with players tasked with collecting artefacts in each level, which are basically pieces of hardware from previous PlayStation consoles. These are stored in the PlayStation Labo area of the game and visiting here after collecting every artefact feels like a journey throughout the history of PlayStation.
The attention to detail is magnificent too, with plenty of PlayStation easter eggs scattered throughout. From plainly obvious easter eggs such as inflatable swimming pool floats in the shape of the PlayStation button symbols, to easter eggs that simply make you smile like the in-world robots acting out scenes from famous PlayStation titles like God of War and LittleBigPlanet. It was nice to see so many nods to games which have defined PlayStation over the years.
From its use of the DualSense controller to the dozens of charming little PlayStation easter eggs, Astro’s Playroom is a beautiful taster of next generation gaming. I loved every minute of it.
When it ever eventually comes back in stock, you can purchase a PlayStation 5 on Amazon here – https://amzn.to/3slAtnh (As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases).