This game is the definitive reason on why and how VR should work.
When it comes to horror, Capcom are cracking down on the scares when it comes to freaking us out, especially in virtual reality. With the announcement of an all-new updated demo of Resident Evil 7: Biohazard on PS4, PS4 Pro, and playable on PSVR at this years PlayStation Experience, it was time to dive right in and let the world of this classic franchise consume our life on the show floor.
PlayStation VR gives a world of difference when it comes to gameplay in the world of immersive gaming. Not only are you playing a game that is right in front of your face, but it gives the impression that you are right there inside, manipulating it, controlling it, allowing it to do as you wish. Resident Evil 7 in VR feels authentic, as though you’re walking through the world they designed. However, when it comes to horror games you should never feel as though you’re in control of any given moment. You’re free to explore and discover, but what this classic horror franchise has in store will come at you when it wants to and that’s usually when you least suspect it.
"Resident Evil 7 on PSVR is surprisingly accurate and unrealistically real."
After putting on the PSVR headset, I was instantly transferred into this world of being in a house deep in the bayou. Decrepit and creaky old floors could be heard below my feet as though I was standing in this house. Resident Evil 7 doesn’t require the player to stand, but rather sit and enjoy the ride. As a decades-long gamer I took the PS4 controller in my hands and tried to move the camera left and right to get a sense of my surroundings. Nothing. The camera was an invalid option. The right analog stick did nothing. As I began to realize that turning my head left, right, up and down was the only way for me to see what was going on around me.
It was surprisingly accurate and unrealistically real. As though I was truly in this house. After receiving very few clues as so what exactly was going on, it was time for me to move on. A TV tuned in to static with a VCR nearby. There was nothing to play in it. The silence in the still air sent shivers down my spine, it felt like something was watching me walk through this decrepit, old house that wasn’t mine. I was an intruder encroaching in on some dirty deeds that were none of my business. The skinned animals puddling their blood on the rickety floors were disturbing enough, but when the dolls fall down from the ceiling, it’s time to go.
In such an unwelcoming place I headed for the door. Of course it was locked, I had to find the key. Turning around each corner was grueling — and I don’t mean it was hard to control. Quite the contrary. Perfectly framed sensitivity made the transition into VR smooth and I didn’t feel as though adjusting anything was necessary. No, what made it so hard to turn the corners was the fact that I had no idea what was going to be around the bend. What eerie manifestation would come jumping out at me? Well, nothing did actually.
"Was something coming to get me? It sure sounded like it but I just never knew when or where. And that’s exactly how a horror game should be."
After walking through a rancid kitchen filled with blood and gore, making my way upstairs and seeing a bunch of disturbing mannequins, and a few more searched around the house, I found the VHS tape for the VCR. I then headed back to the room I started in and played the tape.
A disturbing recollection captured on tape showed the story of two men entering the bayou ridden home in black and white and trying to figure out its meaning.
What’s interesting is the inclusion of the surround sound from the headset provided while playing the game. From every angle I could hear everything around me. Was something coming to get me? It sure sounded like it but I just never knew when or where. And that’s exactly how a horror game should be. A balance of a false sense of security and then a load of survival aspects thrown right in front of you making it seem as though there is no way out.
The demo was very short, but the experience will last a long time. I can most definitely say that I will be experiencing Resident Evil 7 on PSVR next year. The demo is totally separate from the main game itself, so downloading the demo and playing it will not ruin the main game for anyone at all. And with the new, updated demo that just landed it’s going to be more added fun for everyone. This game is the definitive reason on why and how VR should work.