Parenting, eh? Never quite works out how you imagine it will. Whether they're trying to tip-ex the dog, getting stuck upside down in climbing frames or spreading marmite in their hair, life as a mom or dad is rarely smooth sailing. And then there's the arguments that all too quickly degenerate into all-out brawls over Duplo bricks, decapitated Barbie dolls, or whacking each other over the head with Disney Princess wigs. At least they're entertaining we suppose, when they're playing hide and seek behind the curtain, with their legs in full view, yelling at you to come and find them.
Putting a different spin on the trials and tribulations of parenting, last year's PS4 classic Octodad: Dadliest Catch tells the tale of the everyday struggles of your average dad - from cooking burgers over the family barbecue, to furiously shopping for the last box of the only cereal your kids will actually eat, to keeping track of everyone during a rather excitable trip to the local sealife centre. The only difference is, our model parent has a bit of a dark secret - he's actually secretly an octopus, unbeknownst to his family, friends and coworkers. And it's a secret that absolutely must not get out, under any circumstances - no matter how wobbly your work, jelly-limbed your actions or blurbley your speech. To the casual observer, you need to preserve the façade of a caring, normal, human father, despite it being hilariously hard to co-ordinate and control your limbs to complete even the simplest of tasks.
Everyone's favourite cephalopod pop wobbled his way into our hearts when he hit the Playstation 4 this time last year - although some of us could only watch from afar, not having made the leap to the "next generation" consoles yet. The announcement that Octodad would be wobbling his way onto more platforms, then, was music to our ears, when ports for the PS Vita, Wii U and Xbox One were all announced some time ago - although since then, all's been quiet on the western front. Until now.
Landing next week on the PS Vita, Octodad will be bringing his slippery parenting mishaps to a handheld console near you. One of the latest 'Cross Buy' titles on the Playstation Store, those who've already bought the PS4 version will be able to download it onto their Vita's completely free of charge, as one price buys you access to both versions of the game! Likewise, if you buy the PS Vita version, you'll get a Playstation 4 download thrown in for nothing - amazing! The new PS Vita version also has it's own separate list of trophies to collect, giving you a few new challenges to wrap your tentacles around on top of hunting out all those hidden collectable ties. One thing noticeable by its absence however, is whether the Vita version will include the free downloadable 'Shorts' - these extra levels launched last autumn for the PS4 version, and saw the odd octopus father trying his hand at everything from surgery to waiting tables. In the meantime, we'll be crossing our tentacles that they'll be included, either at launch or somewhere down the line!
One of the most amazing features of the original Octodad was being able to play in co-op with up to three friends, each controlling a different one of Octodad's limbs. Usually degenerating into heated arguments, hysterical laughter and a quivering tangle of noodle limbs, the simple act of trying to put ketchup on a burger turned into quite an ordeal, particularly if one of your so-called friend's went rogue, and sent Octodad cartwheeling around the screen while you were preoccupied with an arm. Amazingly enough, the folks behind the Vita version have managed to somehow squeeze local co-op onto the handheld too, although it is limited to just two players this time - each controlling half of Octodad from one side of the console. Given the much closer quarters, and potential for extremely heated 'discussions' regarding your dadliest duties, we sure hope you and your co-op partner get on well!
We don't know about you, but we can't wait to wrap our tentacles around the PS Vita version of Octodad: Dadliest Catch when it hits the downloadable store next Tuesday, the 26th of May. While we still think £11.49 is a tad on the steep side for a download, Octodad's lovable quirkiness and whack controls make for a hilariously enjoyable game - and for those that haven't made the leap to the PS4 yet, this is a great opportunity to play what is probably the greatest octopus father simulation in existence.