The first time I put on the PSVR headset, was like the first time I played the NES. It could also be likened to the first time I played Super Mario 64. It really was something I hadn’t seen or experienced before. I know people are quick to dismiss VR as a fad that will be gone in the next 2 years, but I hope they’re wrong. Right now we’re currently stuck with a ton of tech demos, with a few really great VR games peppered throughout its line-up (Resident Evil 7 is the only full fledged VR experience I know of that’s available right now), but there must be more “full” experiences in development. Currently slated for release on PSVR May 16th, Farpoint looks to be the one game that could be a system seller, and a step in the right direction for VR games.
Farpoint promises a single player campaign “set on a hostile alien planet. On a mission to pick up scientists studying an anomaly near Jupiter, a sudden rupture nearby sends you and their station crashing onto an unknown alien world.” It’s your mission to find these scientists and escape. It just so happens that there’s these spider-like (why does it always have to be spiders) creatures that reside on the planet that want you dead as well. The base game is $50, which is fully playable with a PS4 controller. The package you’ll want for the full experience is the Farpoint VR with Aim Controller Bundle for $80. The gun controller included comes with a joystick for full movement of your character, you even aim down the sights of the gun with your eyes in game for precision shooting. Pop a pair of surround sound headphones on, and watch yourself get completely immersed. It’s going to be something you’ll have to experience for yourself (watching someone play it on Youtube doesn’t count). If you have a friend that has PSVR as well you can play Farpoint online co-op with them.
The type of experience Farpoint is striving for, is what I want from VR. Batman: Arkham VR was cool, but short. Until Dawn: Rush of Blood scared the hell out of me, but it was strictly on rails. Playing Resident Evil 7 with a PS4 controller was fine, but imagine using your hands to open doors or pick up weapons while evading the Baker family. It would be awesome but my heart probably couldn’t handle the intensity. It’s this next level of immersion we need to see more of. I’m still waiting for that fantasy game like Skyrim. Travelling across a vast open world, exploring towns and talking to townsfolk or plundering dungeons with friends online (it gets me all giddy just thinking about it). I don’t know when we’ll ever see something like that, but hopefully someone’s developing it.
VR is still in its infancy (and costs a lot to get started), but it has the potential to be something truly great. Developers and consumers just need to embrace the tech. Farpoint could be the game to provide that true new experience, and encourage other developers to provide more “full” VR experiences. As long as we don’t end up with something like The Oasis from Ready Player One, VR is something we should continue to support. – NVJ
Farpoint releases May 16th on Playstation VR.