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  • Something for the Weekend: PlayStation VR Discounts Build that content library up with these latest offers.
  • Hands-On: Mini-Mech Mayhem Is A Strategic And Hilarious Ode To Tabletop Gaming
    Hands-On: Mini-Mech Mayhem Is A Strategic And Hilarious Ode To Tabletop Gaming

    Reassuringly, FuturLab knows what makes it FuturLab. This is a studio that’s rightly proud of its criminally addictive arcade titles like Velocity and its sequel, immaculately-produced gems with pinpoint mechanics that you can jump straight into but spend weeks attempting to master. Mini-Mech Mayhem is an interesting one, then. It’s entirely different to anything you’ll find in the company’s 15-year history and yet, without question, still a FuturLab game.

    Instead of tying your fingers in knots, Mayhem is more interested in getting your brain in a twist. It’s a tabletop multiplayer game that comes to life in VR; you command a little robot buddy across a square grid, telling him where to move and when to shoot. Each player does this, but the order in which each turn plays out is determined by how far the player wants to move and which body parts they aim for.  Want to sprint to the other side of the map and pop off a headshot? You’ll probably move last in the current turn if so and, by the time you’ve done it, your opponent might not be standing where you thought they’d be anymore.

    Taking out your opponent’s mech isn’t the only goal; you’re trying to collect points that will appear in random places on the map. You need to anticipate if your enemy is going to make a sprint for an area and how to stop him if so while they’re doing the exact same thing. Hitting certain body parts will cause enemy mechs to change direction and even be bumped back a square. It’s a game about prediction, risk-taking and, most importantly, the hilarity of unexpected chaos.  Above all, though, it’s a lot of fun.

    Mini-Mech Mayhem isn’t FuturLab’s first encounter with VR or multiplayer; the studio also developed last year’s Tiny Trax, a likable if somewhat inaccessible take on Scalextric on PSVR. It retained the team’s core design philosophy of arcade gameplay that’s hard to master, though perhaps adhered to that a little too much. Studio founder James Marsden tells me that game’s development marked a turbulent time for FuturLab, but it’s helped them to come out swinging with their next attempt.

    “We learned so much on Tiny Trax about what makes a good, immersive VR experience,” Marsden says. “What really worked was the idea that you’ve got your toys coming to life. And in Tiny Trax it was toy cars and we’ve all been fans of Warhammer, painting miniatures or collecting expensive figurines that aren’t just toys. Taking those pristine models that come to life was an idea that we all fell in love with.”

    As the name suggests, then, Mini-Mech Mayhem stars a cutesy companion you can fit in the palm of your hand. It’s fully customizable with hundreds of cosmetic options (as is the player’s own avatar), but it’ll also interact with you in adorable ways like giving you a fist-bump when winning a match or dancing for you when standing on a podium. Think Astro Bot or Moss (two games Marsden repeatedly references

    The post Hands-On: Mini-Mech Mayhem Is A Strategic And Hilarious Ode To Tabletop Gaming appeared first on UploadVR.

  • AltspaceVR Offers Social Reach For Organizers In VR

    Altspace, the popular social VR app that is most notably compatible with both 3DOF and 6DOF VR headsets, is becoming efficient for users looking to get groups of people to connect and organize within VR. On a technical level, AltspaceVR has received a series of updates designed for event organizers to host audiences on stages

    The post AltspaceVR Offers Social Reach For Organizers In VR appeared first on VRScout.

  • Harry Shotta’s Latest Track ‘Virtual Insanity’ Goes for a VR Tech Vibe His latest video mixes both 360 content with the virtual.
  • Get Some VR Excitement in Your Life With Forklift Simulator 2019 The Early Acces title currently supports Oculus Rift and HTC Vive.
  • The Biggest VR Releases Of The Week Of 12/02/18
    The Biggest VR Releases Of The Week Of 12/02/18

    Whoever said the end of the year would be quiet? New releases are pouring on in as 2018 draws to a close and, while they’re not all home runs, there’s definitely some interesting stuff to check out here.

    What else is to come? You can find out right here in our December games list.

    Gungrave VR, from Iggymob
    Price: $39.99 (PSVR)

    The long-awaited next entry in the little-known Gungrave series is finally here and it’s, well, it’s not brilliant. Gungrave VR takes the ‘gun fu’ mechanics of the PS2-era originals and dressed them up in a brief new campaign that doesn’t really translate very well to headsets. If you’re a die-hard fan of the series you may find something to like here but everyone else best steer clear.

    Arca’s Path from Dream Reality Interactive
    Price: $19.99 (Rift, Vive, Windows VR, PSVR, Go, Gear)

    The debut VR game from DRI is finally here. Arca’s Path is an engaging VR marble maze with an enjoyable story and gorgeous presentation. You simply need to look in the direction you want your ball to travel but it’s not long before things get tricky with environmental obstacles and other issues. This is an enjoyable VR time-killer that does a great job catering to both newbies and veterans.

    Awake: Episode One, from Start VR
    Price: $7.99 (Vive)

    A brilliant new short film that makes great use of volumetric capture to tell an emotionally overwhelming story. Awake follows a tortured soul as he digs into his past to uncover the mystery behind his missing partner.

    Make Noise, from the BBC
    Price: Free (Go)

    The BBC’s latest VR experience is a vibrant celebration of the suffragette movement. You use your own voice to interact with the experience in clever new ways.

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    The post The Biggest VR Releases Of The Week Of 12/02/18 appeared first on UploadVR.

  • StarVR Developer Program Officially ‘on hold until further notice’ Things are not going well.
  • VR Meditation Could Take The Misery Out Of Long-Haul Flying

    Using immersive tech for meditation is becoming more popular, but can it make flying in economy feel bearable? Keen to explore the potential of immersive technologies to enhance passenger wellness during long-haul flights, StoryUP has partnered with French-American company Skylights, which has recently utilized cinematic VR as premium passenger entertainment to work towards integrating its Healium

    The post VR Meditation Could Take The Misery Out Of Long-Haul Flying appeared first on VRScout.

  • StarVR Developer Program ‘On Hold’ Due To ‘Uncertainties With Shareholder’
    StarVR Developer Program ‘On Hold’ Due To ‘Uncertainties With Shareholder’

    Less than a month after StarVR started accepting applications for its $3,200 developer kit program, the company has confirmed to UploadVR that it’s putting the process ‘on hold’.

    Last month, StarVR stated that its first production units for StarVR One were ready. Developers could apply to purchase the headset, which featured 210° horizontal × 130° vertical field of view, dual AMOLED panels, integrated eye tracking and SteamVR 2.0 tracking (though no SteamVR base stations to actually track the device). Yesterday we also reported on the StarVR’s claims that its headset would be the first to support the new VirtualLink standard.

    But trouble was brewing surrounding the announcement. Ahead of the launch, StarVR announced that it was delisting StarVR from the Taipei Exchange Emerging Markets board, citing the current state of the VR industry as one reason. Then, earlier this week, we learned that headset creator Starbreeze, which now owns around a third of StarVR (the other two-thirds belonging to Acer), had filed for reconstruction with the Stockholm District Court. Its offices have been raided this week, leading to one arrest linked to insider-trading.

    Today a StarVR spokesperson provided UploadVR with the following statement: “We believe it is the most responsible course of action to put the StarVR Developer Program on hold while there are uncertainties with our key overseas shareholder, and also while our company is in the process of going private, which may entail some changes to our operations.”

    The same message has been sent to anyone that had enrolled in the program thus far. The statement certainly seems to refer to Starbreeze’s current difficulties.

    It’s uncertain what this means for the future of the VR headset, which had been designed for location-based and enterprise experiences. One thing is likely; developers will have to wait at least a little longer to get their hands on the hardware if it does indeed ever reach their doorsteps.

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    The post StarVR Developer Program ‘On Hold’ Due To ‘Uncertainties With Shareholder’ appeared first on UploadVR.

  • Gungrave VR Review: Better Left Buried
    Gungrave VR Review: Better Left Buried

    I’m not sure exactly who was campaigning for a Gungrave resurrection, let alone one in VR but, judging by just how ludicrously detailed the game’s Wikipedia entry is, they’re out there. If you are one of the few waving that flag then best strap yourself in; this is not going to be pretty.

    Gungrave VR is probably the worst game I’ve played in VR this year. It’s a stripped back PS2-era shooter that can be beaten in less than an hour and has absolutely no reason to be in VR. It’s entirely incoherent, utterly devoid of intrigue and, despite releasing in Japan last year, plays like it’s half-finished.

    This isn’t a port of the original game, though it may as well have been. In the 14 year gap between releases developer Iggymob hasn’t made a single change to the way you control protagonist Grave, who uses all of the same animations from the 2002 original let alone the 2004 sequel. For the most part, you run around in third person, dodge incoming bullets and then return fire by holding R2. The only difference between playing in VR and the old games is that you now aim with your head.

    But what was an already-dated design is made worse here. At least the original Gungrave had a simple linear level structure and some impressive destruction, for the time. Gungrave VR’s three on-foot missions consist of, at most, three tiny areas in which you’ll just need to shoot enemies that pour in to set points until you’re allowed to move on. The destruction is completely gone and, aside from text-based mission briefings that you’ll miss if you don’t return to the main menu between levels, there isn’t any explanation for the different scenarios you’ll suddenly find yourself in.

    It was a random, lifeless hour I spent inside VR.

    There are missions that implement on-rails first-person shooting but they’re entirely unremarkable, lacking any sort of punch to its presentation and relying on the same basic set of enemies from start to finish. Perhaps the one level with some semblance of justification for being in VR is a mission on an air bike in which you face off against a massive blimp. But the game switches between fighting the blimp and fighting regular enemies at random. The blimp just suddenly disappears and then there are new enemies in front of you. It’s dizzying and disjointed nearly to the point of being unplayable.

    All of this might be forgivable if the core ‘gun-fu’ aspect of the game was at least fun to play. In reality, Gungrave VR is one of those ugly reminders that some games don’t play as well as you remember them. The controls are stiff and animations have to be seen through before you can attack enemies as they arrive. Though the entire campaign is quite easy on Normal difficulty, there are some boss fights that will lock you into cheap attacks that push you over, repeating them until you die (at which point you need to start the level over).

    The post Gungrave VR Review: Better Left Buried appeared first on UploadVR.

  • Gungrave U.N. Review: Somehow Worse Than Gungrave VR
    Gungrave U.N. Review: Somehow Worse Than Gungrave VR

    I’m left somewhat lost for words by Gungrave U.N.. It’s a standalone ‘sequel’ to Gungrave VR which I just called maybe the worst VR game to release this year. That game comes and goes in 50 minutes without making any hint of an impression on you. U.N. does that all over again, this time in about half an hour.

    I couldn’t work out what twisted reality I’d stumbled into when I booted up U.N. to discover it recycling the same main menu. Oddly enough, the third-person gameplay that forms the bulk of Gungrave VR is given slightly more polish here; your attacks seem a little faster and more lethal and levels are actually linear environments you have to shoot your way through. It’s still largely pointless, stiff and pretty much without merit, but it is just an inch better than the main game.

    Just when I thought this expansion might come out on top over the original, though, U.N. introduces its side-scrolling sections.

    Yup, the game’s mainly comprised of a barebones side-scrolling shooter in which you use your headset as a cursor to aim. The controls remain exactly the same and you just fight the same type of enemies over and over again for another 30 minutes, aside from three more forgettable boss encounters.

    I really don’t know what to say at this point other than there is literally no reason to put yourself through playing these levels; they find even less purpose for being in VR that the traditional sections do. You slog through one side to the other, your brain wondering off elsewhere for the duration.

    Final Score: 3/10 – Bad

    Gungrave U.N. is a leaner version of an already short game with utterly vapid side-scrolling sections and the same dated design as its predecessor. Don’t do it to yourself.

    Tagged with: Gungrave VR U.N.

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  • Battling Zombies is Easier With Mates, buy one get one Free With Arizona Sunshine The videogame is celebrating its second birthday.
  • 10 Great PC VR Games Confirmed Or Hinted For Oculus Quest
    10 Great PC VR Games Confirmed Or Hinted For Oculus Quest

    In Spring 2019, Facebook will launch Oculus Quest– an all-in-one (standalone) VR headset with room-scale positional tracking and Oculus Touch controllers.

    The company is primarily marketing Quest, which will start at $399, as a games console. Oculus CTO John Carmack sees it as competing with the Nintendo Switch in the market. Boasting a wire-free experience with similar tracking capabilities to the Rift, Quest could be a big leap forward for gaming. As such, Facebook has invested money in porting some of PC VR’s best games to the headset. Here are 10 great games either confirmed or heavily hinted getting a port:

    Superhot VR

    Superhot VR is a unique shooter experience where the faster you move, the faster time moves. If you keep completely still, time will freeze. It is a perfect blend of mental and physical challenge, and perhaps one of the best VR games ever made.

    When we reviewed the game on Rift we gave it 9/10, concluding:

    SUPERHOT VR is a pure, distilled, injection of unadulterated adrenaline that will get your blood pumping just as quickly as time stops in the game itself. With every movement you make, time creeps forward ever so slightly, and everything from the level design to the way it feels to dodge a series of bullets in slow-motion is orchestrated to reinforce the core ideals of the experience. From start to finish it plays out like a fantasy ripped from the screen of every action movie; an indulgent cacophony of visual and gameplay excitement.

    We got a chance to try out Superhot on Quest at OC5. There was no noticeable difference in graphics, and with no cable to restrict your movement it felt “amazing and freeing in a way VR hasn’t really yet”.

    Beat Saber

    No VR game so far has quite captured public attention as much as Beat Saber – the musical experience where the player slashes incoming blocks to the beat of a song using lightsaber-like energy blades. When we reviewed the PSVR version of the game we gave it an 8.5/10, calling it “the most addictive VR game to date”.

    Since its initial PC VR release in May, Beat Saber has become one of the most popular VR games with over 6000 Steam reviews, as well as being an audience favorite among VR streamers and YouTubers.

    When asked on Twitter whether the game would come to Quest, the developers replied “😏😏😏”. This seems to be a good sign although not a confirmation. Representatives from Beat Games, the company behind Beat Saber, declined to comment further on the possibility.

    Robo Recall

    Robo Recall was the Rift’s flagship game for 2017. Developed by Epic Games and funded by Oculus with an estimated budget of up to $10 million, the game has some of the best gunplay mechanics seen in VR to date.

    When we reviewed the game for Rift, we were impressed, giving it a 7.5/10, noting that “frantic moments of shooting action are so thrilling that you are just swept up in it”. It almost feels like being inside an arcade

    The post 10 Great PC VR Games Confirmed Or Hinted For Oculus Quest appeared first on UploadVR.

  • Why A Fisherman’s Tale Is One Of Our Most Anticipated VR Games Of 2019
    Why A Fisherman’s Tale Is One Of Our Most Anticipated VR Games Of 2019

    A few months ago I bumbled along to a Gamescom appointment to see a new game from Innerspace, a VR developer I’d grown much respect for after experiencing its Firebird series. I’d assumed there would be another delightful little experiment to enjoy in its latest title, A Fisherman’s Tale, but I wasn’t quite prepared for the degree at which the game would break my brain.

    Four months on and I’ve just played it again. Much to my relief, it still manages to amaze me.

    In A Fisherman’s Tale you play as a puppet fisherman that’s confined to his cozy lighthouse home. He awakens one night to find that all is not right with his comfy abode, and sets out on a supernatural adventure unlike anything else you’ve seen. I played through the game’s second chapter last week and instantly fell back into my state of enamored admiration for what Innerspace is trying to do. Here’s why.

    There’s An Incredible Central Mechanic

    The first two chapters of A Fisherman’s Tale revolve around one of the most immediately engaging and mind-blowing concepts I’ve seen in VR. Inside the fisherman’s lighthouse there is a model of… the fisherman’s lighthouse. But this is no simple diorama; remove the roof of the hut and you’ll see the ceiling above you disappear. Peer down into the model below and, sure enough, there’s a miniature version of yourself mirroring your every move. Open the window and you’ll look out to see a bigger version of the room surrounding you.

    It takes a few minutes to fully adjust to the eye-opening ramifications of this mechanic (during which you’ll probably try and poke yourself with your own giant finger) but once you manage to get a grasp on it, it gives way to some truly impressive puzzling. Need a smaller version of an item to solve a puzzle? Reach into the model and pull the mini-me edition out. Need something bigger? Drop that item into the scene from above and it’ll fall right in front of you at an enlarged sign.

    It’s difficult to believe that it works so well, but it really does. And the game puts it to great use in the first two chapters, twisting the concept in several ways and mining it for all it’s worth. And it all works so well because you simply believe that there are worlds within worlds around you.

    But It Promises Not To Overuse It

    As captivating as this device is, though, I could easily see it running thin before the game’s credits roll. Fortunately, Innerspace has reassured me multiple times that the remaining chapters will introduce some new twists of their own and won’t lean as heavily on this concept. Wondering what other kinds of virtual acid trips the developer is preparing for later on has me very anxious to get my hands on the full game.

    There’s a lot that Innerspace could do with this world beyond that initial idea. In my first two demos I moved between two rooms of the lighthouse and met some

    The post Why A Fisherman’s Tale Is One Of Our Most Anticipated VR Games Of 2019 appeared first on UploadVR.

  • Preview: A Fisherman’s Tale – Angling for a Unique Experience Seeing more of the title has just increased the interest.