This week, I have been mostly playing…

…with balls on sticks.

By which I mean, glowing balls on sticks. Like these:


Although I got a PSVR headset on release day, I was a bit slow in snapping up a pair of Move controllers to go with it … principally because I wanted to be sure the PSVR wasn’t going to be a blur-o-vision-vomit-torture-machine before throwing more money at my set up. By the time I’d decided that it’s actually a pretty impressive bit of kit, and had seen enough non-nausea-inducing titles to keep me happy, all of the move controllers in the UK had sold out, and the price-gougers had moved in. So I put myself onto the Amazon waiting list, and amused myself with non-move-controller VR experiences in the meantime.

Fast forward a couple of months… and on Christmas Eve (great timing!) a parcel arrived at the Shepherd household, containing the aforementioned devices!

So far, I’ve tried 3 move-controlled games…

The London Heist is part of the “Playstation VR Worlds” collection (essentially, a disk full of tech demo mini-games). It’s the only title on the disk which benefits from Move Controllers — so I’d completely avoiding playing it until the Move wands arrived.

It’s good fun, but — as expected — feels more like a VR demo than a full game. It’s a short London Gangland romp, which alternates between various characters shouting expositional dialogue at you in cockney accents, and first-person-on-rails shoot-the-enemies levels. That said, the finale — a high-speed shoot-em-up in the passenger seat of your getaway van, is absolutely glorious; using one hand to fire your machine pistol, while the other hand grabs ammo clips and feeds them into the gun is a great gaming experience. But it takes a while to get to the good bit, and it doesn’t last anything like long enough 🙁

Next up, Holoball. Holoball is — to my knowledge — the only room-scale VR experience on PSVR. It’s basically like playing 3D pong, with dual-wield tennis rackets, in a distinctively TRON-like environment.

It’s beautifully fluid, the controllers track brilliantly… and I managed to play it for all of 10 minutes before smashing my hand into a real-world light fitting and getting very disapproving noises from Mrs S. Fortunately, nothing was damaged. But that one probably isn’t getting played again until we move house. Oops.

Finally: Until Dawn:Rush of Blood. It’s an on-rails twin wielding shooter (literally, on rails, as it’s set on some kind of crazy ghost-train roller-coaster), and it is the single most terrifying entertainment experience I’ve had in years.

Seriously, just watching that video gives you no idea just how much your fight-or-flight instinct kicks in when those things get RIGHT UP IN YOUR FACE, in glorious 3D VR. The move controller integration works brilliantly. It’s terrifying, visceral, and very very scary indeed.

So, yeah, so far, I’m impressed. The move wands might not be as feature-rich and high-tech as the HTC Vive controllers (the only other VR-specific controllers that I have any experience with), but for a cheap-and-cheerful, consumer-friendly console game controller, they’re very impressive indeed. Good stuff! 🙂

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