As PSX came to a close, it was obvious what the big focus of the weekend was: PlayStation VR. Almost every booth featured at least one glowing blue PSVR headset for fans to be immersed in various worlds. I’ve had a chance to become immersed in many of them and I must say I’ve been more than impressed by the showing of VR games on display. Developers seem to be honing their craft with VR games, finding what makes these experiences unique and have begun to unlock the potential of the visor.
I wasn’t always keen about VR as someone prone to motion sickness, but a number of the games I tried this weekend left me with a sense of wanting to play more rather than a feeling of nausea. Games like Moss and Star Child maintain that beautiful immersion you get with VR without spinning in zero gravity or racing down a track. Apart from the stable experience these platformers bring, the intuitive ability to interact with the game world makes puzzle solving feel less hindered by the ability to master game mechanics and more about actual puzzle solving.
For those who want a bit more action in their VR experience, there’s good news for you too. First-person shooters are starting to find their place among VR titles as more than tech demos. Firewall Zero Hour put me in a tactical squad trying to methodically clear out a building of bad guys. Movement controls felt a little foreign at first, but everything else handled naturally. Need to peer around a corner? Tilt your head around a pillar to get a glimpse of the enemy. Need to shoot to side quickly? Just aim and shoot. Want a bit more story with to go with a life-like FPS? Try a game called Blood & Truth where you better know how to handle a gun; from manually loading your pistol to operating a multipart security system to crawling through an air duct, everything you do is controlled with the Move controllers with surprising ease. The combination of waypoints and on-rails sections for movement also keep the game interesting and not at all out of place.
All of these great titles from this weekend have me excited to see what will keep coming down the PSVR pipeline and what I mentioned is a mere four out of a field of many, many more. At one point, many consumers (especially those who’d spent big money on an original PSVR) were worried that Sony was going to go the route of the Vita and offer minimal support for the device. It’s obvious now that’s the furthest thing from the truth and Sony is in for the long haul. As more VR titles start to feel like games rather than tech demos, I’m starting to become more of a believer in what kind of experiences will come with VR and am really glad to see Sony leading the charge on consoles.