Launched today, the PlayStation VR is already making waves as the best virtual reality gaming experience yet. While not ahead of the Oculus Rift and the HTC Vive in terms of technical advancement, it’s the games selected for the platform that make the difference.
It’s not yet clear if all the 50 games promised by Sony will actually be available for the PlayStation VR by the end of the year. However, one small gem has already caught everyone’s attention, not least for the fact that it’s already 15 years old.
A Masterpiece Remastered For The PlayStation VR
Developed by Sega’s United Game Artists, the original Rez was launched in 2001 for the Dreamcast and PlayStation 2 consoles. Rez is a rail shooter, a genre popular at that time in arcades, and even on home systems. This means that the game has a predetermined path for you, sort of like a rail. You can control where you look, but you can’t control where you are going.
While playing, you control a hacker avatar, roaming through the virtual world of a computer named Eden. You’re not really there to destroy or steal anything from the computer, but rather to save it and get rid of the viruses that populate it.
But the simple story isn’t what gives Rez its positive trance-like vibe. Those can be attributed to its art design and gameplay. Moving through abstract vectored shapes would have been trippy enough for any game. But Rez takes things a bit further when it makes its soundtrack completely interlinked with the gameplay.
A Musical Shooter
When shooting at the viruses, and subsequently destroying them, instead of more aggressive death sounds, you get music. There are five levels, each with their own harmonics that can only be improved by your actions. The game has a target-locking system that lets you shoot up to 8 targets at once.
While Rez didn’t sell millions, it was critically acclaimed and is placed among the best video games of all times. The name under which you can find it for the PlayStation VR is Rez Infinity, an HD remake of the original. Along the five standard levels, you also get to play in Area X, which, for a change, lets you “off the rails,” allowing you to control where the avatar goes.
This is probably your best choice, should you buy Sony’s new virtual reality system. Among other games you can get for the PlayStation VR are the space dogfight simulator EVE: Valkyrie and the horror rail-shooter, Until Dawn: Rush of Blood.
Image source: Flickr