SHORT REVIEW: PS4 VR
How many times can you say “It’s amazing sitting in this thing”, before a well deserved slap finds my face. Oh hum.
I can save you some time here. If you’ve already read the EVE: Valkyrie review, replace the word “spaceship” with “car”, jump to the score and nod approvingly.
Regardless I’ll try to keep it brief. These VR reviews are starting to congeal into a brown pool of review goo with the word immersive stuck in the top. Bit like the flake in an ice cream. An immersive flake.
Unlike EVE: Valkyrie or similarly full-priced VR games concentrating on multiplayer, Driveclub VR is a proper single player game with multiplayer elements included. It’s not an “experience”, nor is it full of short term gimmicks designed to distract you from a lack of content. Here we enjoy plentiful tracks, varied races and modes. A brief peruse of the options menu will show you this is the real deal. You sit in the car, peak at the wing mirrors, accelerate, whoop and wish you’d paid for a steering wheel and pedals.
So we give it a score of: –
Wait? Why is it just a 7?
There are several downfalls. Firstly the textures are blurry at distance, making it troublesome to see what’s coming. Additionally this is a pricey upgrade if you’ve already driven round these tracks with bog-standard Driveclub.
Hang on? What makes it good?
This is the fullest single player VR experience I’ve played so far. Comparable to none-VR games. This proves it can be done!
Sitting in a car is amazi-*SLAP* – “ouch!”
I’ve always hated in-car viewpoints. They’ve always feel so restrictive as you squint past the well-rendered dashboard, to the tiny, more important track. In real life we are blessed with peripheral vision and the ability to turn our heads, so Virtual Reality naturally makes the in-car view viable. Yes, even if it is a bit blurry. In fact, Driveclub VR reminds me of real life go-karting as you feel every turn. This is the first racing game where I’ve enjoyed a time trail as much as a race. Looking around the open road and judging upcoming corners continue to thrill.
Pre-race you can adjust your seat to cram your face into the windshield and of course, you can still change viewpoints in game. I’m happy to report I’ve not had any issues with the Virtual Reality tracking.
Much has been made by how ugly the game is. Normal everyday Driveclub is an unfeasibly good looking game with incredible lighting. It would be cruel to compare such a looker to any first generation Virtual Reality. Even if VR reduces beautiful dress Driveclub to romper suit Driveclub. These games can easily co-exist as they feel completely different. Yes, even with the same car handling, game mechanics and structure. Sitting in the car makes that much of a difference.
Quote from EVE: Valkyrie review applies here: – Much has been made of how Playstation VR games don’t look as sexy as your regular everyday games and that’s true. It’s also true regular games don’t strap your fucking head into a new world.
Lastly, if you do take the plunge, you must try the replay mode. Even if it’s just the once.
I’ve no doubt the definitive driving experience will find it’s way to Playstation VR, but this is a great start, even if it isn’t graphically optimised. If you love cars more than online spacecraft or robots, this will be the game you’ll return to time and time again. In the long term, Driveclub VR will hold it’s score of 7 because of the wealth of content provided; whilst its online contemporaries will depreciate in gaming value.