Playstation VR Hands-On Impressions

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The Sony booth at EB expo this year had a small portion dedicated to demoing the Playstation VR (also known as ‘Project Morpheus’). Although it was pretty much booked out by other (less capsule-based) media outlets and members of the general public, I succeeded on my charisma check and managed to squeeze myself into a session. After strapping myself in with the headset and headphones, I started on my (mis)adventure.

I was playing through The London Heist which seemed highly reminiscent thematically of British crime films and which had me start off in an interrogation in some manner of underground chamber. The room was dark and besides me, there was a burly British gentleman who was decidedly intimidating. After an awkward silence where we both sat and watched each other silently, he received a phone call in the middle of holding a blow torch up to my face. He was annoyed at this interruption but then proceeded to tell me that the call was for me and held out the phone. I was still getting a hand of the controls but after fumbling with the controls and caressing the bruiser’s hand lovingly for a moment; I picked up the phone and put it to my ear.I was impressed that the sound was localised to appear as though it was coming from the phone in my hand as the voice on the other end spoke to me and the scene melted into a flashback.

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I was now in a fancy office with a very grandiose writing desk. I was informed that I needed to find a diamond but that I would need a key to get at it. I began my search immediately and was impressed by how responsive and accurate the controls were at picking up my motions as I rummaged around. There were a couple of instances where I believe I may have stuck my arm out a bit too far in one direction and my hand started to glitch out, but it only happened once and for a split second during my playthrough. In my search I found a gun and ammo which I placed on the desk alongside the key I needed to open the safe with the diamond. Upon picking up said diamond, alarm bells started ringing and guards started running into the room. It was at that point that the gun I found earlier came in handy.

I had to manually load the gun by picking up a clip in one hand and loading it into the butt of the gun. The action was fairly smooth and not nearly as finnicky as the real thing but still a nice little representation. Firing the pistol was similarly smooth with the controller largely responding to my fine tuning quite well. The lack of recoil also meant I could fire the pistol sideways (real GANGSTA) without too much penalty.

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After engaging in a firefight with the guards who entered the room, my session ended. I was thoroughly impressed by what I had seen and experienced with the accuracy of the controls being something which particularly surprised me. I’m interested in seeing what else comes of this system and with the motion controls. My one concern for future release to the public would be the issue of space (not everyone has a nice big living room to swing around in) and safety (not everyone has a booth employee to make sure they don’t trip over wires).

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