Now that South Africa has hit junk status and the rand is spiralling ever further downward, videogames and gaming in general are about to get a lot more expensive.
It’s not like anyone other than the richest of punters could roll down to a games shop or hit up Takealot for a smorgasbord of games to begin with, but with the rand losing value day by day against the dollar, players are going to have to become meticulously selective about which games they shell out cash for.
In a way, it may revitalise the readership for game reviews; when your entertainment of choice costs the same as two week’s worth of groceries, you tend to put a lot more research time in ahead of handing over your money.
So with all that said, it’s incredibly hard to justify PS VR Worlds as a standalone purchase. As a tech demo, it’s fine, but it boasts little to no replay value whatsoever after an initial play-through.
PS VR Worlds Review – Small package
PS VR Worlds should’ve have come free with the PS VR headset. It’s not the first game released to show off the capabilities of a new piece of kit that’s sold separately – Gears Of War and Kinect Sports leap to mind – but unlike those games, there’s no reason to keep playing once every piece of content has been explored.
It has more in common with 1-2 Switch – yet another title that should’ve arrived bundled with the kit it demos – although when compared to that game’s 28 mini-games, the content in PS VR Worlds seems positively anorexic. There are just five games contained in this package, and to be brutally honest, only two of them are worth playing.
PS VR Worlds Review – The good
Those two mini-games are The London Heist and Danger Ball and they’re head and shoulders in quality over the three other games they’ve been packaged with.
Danger Ball is essentially a first-person version of Pong in which players try to out play an AI opponent in a neon-soaked tunnel. To make things a little more challenging, players return the ball using their head and the AI isn’t exactly a slouch so victory requires them to bank the ball off the tunnel’s sides. It’s fun in short bursts and may bring uber-competitive players back for more than a second helping.
The London Heist, for its part, tells the story of a diamond robbery that goes wrong and it comes across like a diet version of Time Crisis with the characters of the first couple of Guy Richie films tipped into it. Players essentially watch a series of one-sided conversations with Cockney gangsters play out in a series of environments. Other than that there are a couple of shooting gallery levels – one in a mansion and one in a van speeding down a motorway.
The whole thing’s over in less than an hour and then players can test their skills in a separate shooting range mode. Really, it feels like a demo for a full game that hasn’t been made yet. It can be played with either a Dual-Shock or PS Move controllers and, despite its brevity, it’s arguably the strongest entry here.
PS VR Worlds Review – The bad
VR Luge, on the other hand, is tripe. Players are dropped into the pants of some nutcase who has decided to luge down a busy highway. While this sounds exciting, the experience is hampered by the fact that players move from side to side in the road by moving around their heads. It doesn’t really feel like anything close to the real thing and it’s made worse by the fact that occasionally there’s a disconnect between the player’s movements and their avatar’s.
Scavenger’s Odyssey is another clunker, in which players pilot a mech around in space by jumping from asteroid to asteroid while shooting at little aliens. Played with a Dual-Shock controller, it offers 360 degree movement – rather than the on-rails experience in many of the other games – that can feel disorienting and queasy at times. Once again, this is a tech demo with zero replay value.
PS VR Worlds Review – The ‘meh’
Ocean Descent is the tech demo you hand to your parents. Or grandparents. Or someone who has never played on a console in their lives and finds the idea of holding a Dual-Shock controller intimidating.
This game takes players to the ocean floor in a shark cage and they are able to look at aquatic life. That’s pretty much it and, apart from an episode in a which a shark becomes a little to enthused with tearing apart the cage surrounding the player, this is pretty average throughout.
PS VR Worlds Review – Verdict
PS VR Worlds does a great job showing what’s possible with the PS VR, but with a package that doesn’t really explore much of this potential. At best it feels like demos for better, lengthier games that haven’t been made yet. At worst it feels like something of a cash grab because after forking over the required dosh for a PS VR, this really should’ve been included with the headset.