VR roundup #1

Okay, time to get this ball rolling again! While I am mostly active on Facebook these days (follow me on https://www.facebook.com/gerald.terveen ) and work on several games that I want to release in the coming months/years … I also want to go back to blogging.

I still get a lot of game keys in my mailbox and while I appreciate them a lot I barely find the time to play anything that is not Virtual Reality. So the good old days of me hunting through a ton of Xbox indies to find the gems are over, instead I will just write about stuff in the VR world. And about the occasional indie title that sparks my interest. Without a plan, without a mission … just because I care.

And I start with this little VR roundup of a few things I got to try lately:

zGame (alpha WIP)

This is a game in development by my friends from Stormbringer Studios and they send me a build of the demo above. It is a not very remarkable zombie shooter … except that it is very remarkable in that it solves locomotion in a very fresh way I had not seen before! You get open world exploration with actual movement instead of the teleportation that is so popular these days.
And that is a game changer as you no longer are on a rail or just can teleport away from enemies!
I loved the short time I spend with this early alpha so far and am very much looking forward to see more of it … and I am not a zombie shooter fan, so this is very promising.

Cosmic Trip (early Access)

A friend of a friend send me a key for this little gem and damn it is a really polished little indie that I can’t wait to play more with. I only gave it 20 minutes or so as the early Early Access state of this title makes it rather repetitive and I will certainly go back to it later, but I can already say it has a very uplifting feeling and in its current state lacks frustrating moments.
It is a very simple base defense type of game – build bot, have bot mine gems, build bot with lasers to defend against incoming waves of enemies. But it allows you to enter the action yourself by fighting at the base you currently occupy with so far two different attack mechanics. One is throwing rotating energy discs and the other is using a turret that also allows you to protect your bots from enemy fire.
It’s super polished and I have not noticed any annoying things like god rays, which is really important to me. But it is also a very early state, so do not expect a ton of variety or a challenge, this is just pure fun. You can check it out on Steam: http://store.steampowered.com/app/427240

Lune (release June 20th)

The developer behind this little amazing gem is Isaac Cohen, I met him a few years ago when I visited the Leap Motion headquarters. He was so kind to send me a key so I could check it out. This is not really a game, this is more of a crazy experience that I won’t go into detail with as the exploration aspect is an important aspect of it I think. It will be released on Steam on June 20th.
But what I can say is that it is a bit like what I imagine a drug induced dream might be – very surreal and quite artful. I played through it twice in a row and I think I will put quite a few people into the experience from now on … so the asking price of $3 might be a bit steep if you compare it to a Humble Bundle, but very well worth it if you compare it with the amount of alternatives to get such an experience (which to my count is currently zero).

Blarp

Isaac also send me a code for this little nugget and I wish I had more space to fully enjoy it. It has a very cool game mechanic where you get to control Blarps(?) by pulling them towards your controller and sling them around. You start with a single Blarp and have to hit an egg containing another Blarp … which then releases the next Blarp. So little by little your army of Blarps grows and also the virtual space you play in gets bigger and bigger.
I do have a lot of tech stuff standing around and am not good at holding myself back, so I had to stop playing this before I destroy anything (which sadly is true for a lot of experiences out there these days!). But I certainly had fun and will pick this up again once I moved into a more Vive appropriate space for stuff like this. It is highy experimental and simple – but well worth the $3 it is listed for on Steam here: http://store.steampowered.com/app/420840/

You can also visit Isaac’s website where you can find more experimental stuff (for free!): http://cabbibo.is/

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About Gerald Terveen

gamer, webdesigner, programmer, graphicdesigner, journalist, video editor, nerd, chess player, likes badminton, reads a lot of books, lives in germany, loves good gummi bears (not haribo), likes table top games, played a lot of pen & paper rpgs in childhood, East Frisian, mind ages slower than body, reads scientific papers for fun, very agile, writes short stories instead of keeping a diary, is keen on photography, hears music from classic to punkrock, blogs, the glas is half full kinda guy, watches a lot of tv series, hates dubbed movies, likes animes but not mangas... and is still a lot more complex than this!

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