Greetings, adventurers! Yesterday I talked about my first experience with virtual reality courtesy of Playstation VR. Getting to check it out got me thinking about what kinds of games I would actually want to get the VR treatment. And I naturally gravitated to some of my favorite games – surprise, surprise – from Nintendo. Right now Nintendo doesn’t have VR and they aren’t working on it (supposedly), but hey, this is just me saying what games I personally would like to experience in virtual reality, not which ones I think will legitimately happen. So without further ado, let’s start with Game #1!
GAME #1: The Legend of Zelda
Zelda is a game where the player character is literally named “Link” because he’s supposed to be your representative in the game world. So why not just skip that step? Give me a sword and shield, a bow and arrow, and throw me directly into the depths of Hyrule to fight Ganondorf face-to-face. Skyward Sword already led us one step in that direction, so let’s take the next step and totally immerse the player in the world of Hyrule. Being able to strategically hack your way past enemy defenses, solve puzzles in dungeons, and claim the Triforce in your own two hands would be pretty awesome. I imagine that this would be a sort of side-game in the vein of TriForce Heroes, probably focused on the Link of Skyward Sword dealing with some small-time villain that rises up during the aftermath of Demise’s…well, demise. Either that, or the game should hardcore bank on nostalgia and be set in Ocarina of Time’s Hyrule and allow you to explore those locations in first-person. Either way, I’d be down for it. Of course, this prospect is mostly just because I love Legend of Zelda and think it would be really cool to get to experience it with that level of immersion. There are some other games that I think would be a more legitimate fit for the VR experience. Such as…
GAME #2: Zero Escape
No, this has nothing to do with the fact that I am currently playing through Zero Time Dilemma. The premise of escaping from a vicious serial killer by solving a series of deadly puzzles, in hopes that the other captives won’t betray you to gain their freedom – it’s perfect for VR. Imagine how much more you’ll hate someone who betrays you when they are personally betraying YOU, literally stabbing you in the back or causing you to receive Zero’s harsh punishment. Imagine how much clearer (or not) you would think about the puzzles if there was a legitimate feeling of dread you were experiencing because the “physical” consequences would fall directly on you. VR would be an incredible way to play out a Zero Escape scenario. Heck, there are already places you can go to volunteer to be “locked” into a room with only an hour to make your escape. Why not take that to the next level by making it as scary as Hell?
I think for this to really work, though, the technology running VR would need to be upgraded. I mentioned in my post yesterday that I feel like a “glove controller” should be developed that allows you to legitimately use your hands to interact with the game. That sort of technology would be pretty much a requirement to make a Zero Escape game run well. Trying to do puzzles with those awkward Move controllers would be flat-out awful. They aren’t designed for that sort of finesse experience. But having the ability to pick up and grab things, press buttons, roll dice, operate weapons, and turn handles or pull levers would really make the game world feel real – and thoroughly terrifying. Nothing scarier than knowing one wrong move with a wire cutter is going to blow you and your teammates to smithereens.
GAME #3: Metroid
Okay, so this suggestion is my legitimate “this is the first game I thought of when I started thinking about what games would be cool in VR” game. If you’ve played a Metroid Prime game and you’ve also experienced a shooter in VR, you probably understand where I am coming from. The control setup – as is, no future technology required – is perfect for a Metroid game. The prime series is all about immersion into an alien world, desperately struggling against fearsome creatures and navigating fascinating but dangerous wilds in order to survive and accomplish your mission. It’s already in first person, it already utilizes the sort of control scheme that current VR uses, and the type of story that the game tells is perfect for the VR experience.
Imagine it. You start out in the remains of a crashed Federation vessel, accessing the log computers with your Scan visor to find out what happened to the men and women on board. Lo and behold, you find evidence of Space Pirate attack and even get into a small skirmish with a nearly-dead pirate. You discover that the pirates are camped not too far from the crash site, and that they stole precious Federation research that could be weaponized in the wrong hands. While you’re heading to the pirate camp, you face off against terrifying enemies like war wasps and shriek bats as you desperately work to use your available tech to make your way through the wilds. When you reach the pirate camp, there are too many to fight, so you’re forced to stealthily make your way through to where the research is held. Just when you think your mission has been successful, an alarm goes off as a group of freshly-hatched Metroids escape their tanks and begin to wreak havoc on the camp.
I can very easily see this scenario playing out not only in Metroid itself, but also in a virtual reality setting. About the only thing about Metroid that isn’t perfect would be the Morph Ball transformation. However, I think a shift in perspective that realistically animates the surroundings at the eye level of the morph ball could work. Besides, how awesome would it feel to be playing as Samus Aran in her morph ball? Answer: very!
While I don’t think I would buy a VR headset just for this game, Metroid is exactly the kind of game I’d want to play as a VR experience. Immersive, intense, a little scary, and full of action from start to finish.
What are your thoughts, adventurers? What series or game would you like to see get the VR treatment? Feel free to comment with your own ideas, and who knows – maybe we’ll be giving some ideas to a few developers out there.