Pre-loaded onto every PlayStation 5 console, Astro’s Playroom is a gentle 3D platformer designed primarily as an introduction to Sony’s new DualSense controller. Japanese developers ASOBI Team have form for transmuting glorified tech demos into gaming gold, however, and this joyful outing is every bit the alchemical equal of their VR hit Astro Bot Rescue Mission.
As with previous Astro Bot outings, the central conceit here is that the little critters exist inside your hardware, and each of the game’s punningly titled four worlds features landscapes constructed from the constituent parts of consoles, controllers and accessories from PlayStations present and past.
Indeed, it quickly transpires the whole game is actually an interactive love letter to the brand’s 25-year history, and so stuffed with easter eggs that you’ll need several lockdowns to discover them all. Seemingly every conceivable piece of PlayStation hardware exists in collectible form, and interacting with them in the game’s hub area is a Proustian delight.
Even better are the super charming vignettes depicting scenes from classic games acted out by Astro Bots in fancy dress scattered throughout the game’s levels. It’s a wonderfully self indulgent cocktail of celebration and fan service more reminiscent of Nintendo than Sony - and all the more delightful for it.