Of course, Psychonauts is a platformer, and as such, there’s a lot to do. Raz has the normal jumping and punching of a platform hero, but he also has a number of psychic powers intended to aid him in his quest. Powers vary from traditional telekinesis and clairvoyance to the rather unique Psi-Shield and Psi-Blast. His ten powers are earned either through gaining levels or completing certain areas.
Levels are gained through collecting. Collecting what? Collecting a lot: psi cards, psi cores, and scavenger hunt items in the outside world, figments and cobwebs inside levels. And those are only the things that have a direct impact on Raz's level; there are a few more types of items that can be collected and redeemed for various rewards. While completionists will have a good bit of backtracking and hunting to do, casual fans will never feel it necessary to simply spend time hunting stuff down. All of Raz's important powers are gained early, and later levels simply grant a boost to existing powers.
To unravel the mystery of the disappearing brains, Raz must spend time sorting through the personal demons of various people around camp. To do this, Raz must enter the psychic consciousness; levels consist of individual brains… with all the accompanying quirks. Such a setup allows for incredible diversity and creativity, especially since a few of the minds are certifiably insane.
Raz will get to explore a mind that's filled with old war imagery; a place with barbed wire and a drill sergeant constantly yelling at him. On the opposite end of the spectrum, he'll visit a mind that is quite clearly stuck in the disco age, and it will take all his powers of levitation to keep the party hopping. But both pale in comparison to the incredulity that is The Milkman Conspiracy, a twisting, floating neighborhood full of mysterious detectives bent on finding a milkman. And don't forget the Goggalor level in which Raz enters the mind of a lungfish and plays a Godzilla-like character who helps the resistance movement free the town from the clutches of an equally large evil overlord.
Clocking in at around ten hours, the game is short enough that it keeps the entertainment value throughout. Since players are unlikely to find everything in a single playthrough, the game also features good replayability. With spot-on controls and side-splitting humor, Psychonauts is an easy recommendation.
Psychonauts is rated T (Teen) by the ESRB for Cartoon Violence, Crude Humor, and Language. This game can also be found on: Xbox and PC.