This month’s immersive offerings include squad-based combat, post-apocalyptic archery and a parkour puppy.
Now that there’s finally a healthy ecosystem of VR headsets competing for the affection of users, we’re thankfully at the point where we’re regularly being treated to a constant flow of both polished and unpolished VR experiences. Afterall, the only thing more important than the hardware itself is the content to experience.
That being said, let’s take a look at five of the more prominent VR releases for March:
Apex Construct (HTC Vive, Oculus Rift, Windows Mixed Reality)
Available on all major headsets for $29.99, Apex Construct is a fully-developed solo experience that thrusts users into a post apocalyptic future controlled by ferocious synthetic beasts. The last human in a world destroyed by mankind’s reckless experiments, you must uncover the truth about your species’ near-extinction using only your bow and cunning to survive.
Along with a captivating plotline, Apex Construct boasts a wide array of features from a flexible weapons system and multiple hidden pathways and puzzles, to a fully customizable homebase.
Apex Construct is available now for all major headsets via SteamVR.
Ark Park (HTC Vive, Oculus Rift, PSVR, Windows Mixed Reality)
Although it was met with mixed reviews, Ark Park is still the closest you’re going to get to a full-fledged Jurassic Park VR experience. A standalone expansion of the popular Steam title Ark: Survival Evolved, this VR rendition brings that same dino-breeding action in the form of 10 unique locations bursting with over a hundred prehistoric creatures.
However, your enjoyment of this experience fully depends on your understanding that this is NOT a full VR recreation of the original Ark: Survival Evolved. Ark Park is more of a tight concentration of the original games most appealing features repurposed for headsets and motion controllers. You’ll still be collecting DNA, trading engrams at your base, discovering and hatching your own companions and defending vital technology from moraogin hordes of wild dinosaurs with your fellow adventurers.
Unfortunately no free locomotion, teleportation only.
Bravo Team (PSVR)
Cinematic action comes to the PSVR in the form of Bravo Team, an intense single player/online 2 player coop experience chock full of explosions, fire and of course plenty of bullets. Best used with the Playstation aim controller, players must peak around corners, hunt enemies with their guns sight and even blindfire over cover to secure the battlefield. Multiple pathways mean multiple outcomes, highlighting the importance of split second decision-making and constant communication.
Impressions have been mixed, but if you’re looking for an intense arcade shooter to enjoy with a buddy, this may be the casual VR shooter you’ve been looking for.
Bravo Team is available now for $39.99 via the PSVR.
Arguably the most unique VR experience on the list, Golem not only takes VR in a new direction, but storytelling as a whole. Playing the role of an injured young man sequestered to your bed, you eventually develop the ability to create and puppet mysterious stone beings known as “golems.”
Seeing through their eyes, the boy is able to first explore the entirety of his room using several toy-sized golems. However, as is ability develops the boy is eventually able to conjure enormous 15-foot golems capable of navigating the abandoned city outside the safety of his room. There you’re stone puppets will navigate the ancient world, encountering various dangers along the way.
On top of this unique gameplay, Golem features original music from the award-winning composer Marty O’Donnell of Halo and Destiny fame, as well as lean-based “incline VR controls” by Jaime Griesemer, game designer on Halo, Destiny and Infamous Second Son.
Golem is available now for PSVR.
VR Soccer Training (Windows, Oculus Rift)
Ok, so while it may not be a AAA VR title per say, it’s hard to ignore an experience with controls as unique as VR Soccer Trainer. Available now for PC and the Oculus Rift, this bizarre soccer “simulator” does away with motion controls in favor of full-body interaction. However, whereas most VR experiences with full-body integration would most likely use a tool such as the Vive tracker, VR Soccer Trainer instead employs the use of the long-forgotten Microsoft Kinect.
Using the motion capture technology featured in the abandoned device, users can use their entire bodies to perform free kicks, shoot targets and even block shots on goal. Is it a fully-fleshed out title? No. Is it an interesting use of “obsolete” technology once thought dead? You bet.
So if you happen to have an old Kinect stuffed away somewhere, why not dig it out for a couple rounds of indoor training? After all, it’s free.
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