The Japanese company is the undisputed leader in the field of virtual reality, because she managed only a few months to beat the sales of VR headsets of their main competitors in the face of Oculus and Samsung on the market of virtual reality for more than a year. Although gorgeous AAA-level projects Resident Evil VII do not go as often as we would like, Sony continues to delight users of the small but extremely fun games. One of these games is StarBlood Arena, released today exclusively for the PS4 console and a helmet .
For the development of StarBlood Arena answered the internal game division as Sony SIE San Diego Studio, a famous series of baseball simulation MLB, as well as such games as ModNation Racers and Sports Champions. But the main work on the project lay on the shoulders of a small California Studio WhiteMoon Dreams, whose staff is composed of people who worked on the Fallout series, Ratchet & Clank and Medal of Honor. You can feel that the developers approached the game with great enthusiasm. That's right feel the love they created the characters and had meticulously checked the nuances of the gameplay. But all worth telling in order.
The Game is an arena shooter that is clear from the title of the project. The plot of the game is not as such, but instead, we are told that was organized by the intergalactic tournament StarBlood Arena, which the pilots flock from all corners of the universe in search of glory, prize money and the opportunity to shoot their guns. The battle ships inside confined spaces are broadcasted on the television network StarBlood Network, and comment on everything that happens leading two fat alien Grox and the robot J3-RY.
If you remember the old game Descent, released in 1995, you can roughly imagine how the control of military ships in the StarBlood Arena. Yes, you have complete freedom of movement thanks to the six degrees of freedom. This game will force you to briefly retreat from the model of 2D thinking. It will need to not only move left/right and forward/backward but also up/down and turning around several axes, not forgetting the roll angle of the ship, just like in any simulator adjusted to weightlessness. In some moments of the game I understood that completely disoriented in space and did not guess where the top and bottom where. In General, modern developers rarely resort to such schemes, in an effort to make life easier for gamers. Employees WhiteMoon Dreams have decided to go their own way.
After a short introduction and briefing about the ship, the player gains access to several game modes. Of online modes that the game places special emphasis, you may use "Massacre" — deathmatch for eight players and a "Team carnage" — the same, but with two teams of four people each. Mode "Spaceball" offers you to battle with other players in some sort of cosmic football when you grab the ball and shoot them in the gates of power, simultaneously fighting off rivals. A fourth mode of the game "Invaders!" is a cooperative opposition to the waves of hostile aliens shoulder to shoulder with three other players.
If you don't want to fight with unfamiliar people, you can always configure a private lobby and invite your friends. If the fights online, you do not draw, you can always use in the game single-player modes. In addition to the modes mentioned above, only with AI bots instead of real people, you are also available in the mode "hell" — a tournament consisting of several matches in which the player must take the first place. After the first tournament, you will receive access to the "ultimate" version, which rivals significantly more professional, and the prizes are much more serious.
The game features nine different pilots, each with unique combat ship. And here I applaud the developers for standing up. Each character is drawn and animated with great love and attention to detail. Each pilot has unique weapons and their pros/cons. For example, someone particularly good in melee, and someone – on the contrary, are ideal for distance fight. Redhead girl Alice, dressed in a leather jacket and old glasses, as if caught in a game of works in the genre of steampunk. Funny alien Tank loves giant guns and can activate a powerful energy shield. Alien of Gregg, dressed in a stylish leather coat, able to hit enemies with your rifle, even through walls, but it had a very weak defense. Robot Pescado draws energy from enemy shields, making it especially dangerous opponent. Cowgirl Apollonia knows how to place on the battlefield of energy traps, similar to the terminator character named Baron is a specialist in extra heavy weapons. Every pilot in the game are well voiced and constantly commented on everything that he sees around him.
As the game offers us a first-person view, you will see the bridge of his ship. Including the hand of the pilot holding the control stick. Each bridge is different from the rest. For example, Dregg instead of the usual joystick and uses touch areas, and the trio of tiny aliens Tik-tak-Tap separately control two levers and pointing guns at the target. To aim, by the way, in the game you need to turn the head. Don't forget that we are talking about the game for the headset virtual reality PlayStation VR, so the aim here is realized the most obvious way. Just look at the enemy and shoot him. Very convenient and no need to sharpen your accuracy in conjunction with the game controller.
By the way, about the prizes: for the fights you get local currency "blood bucks", which can purchase containers with loot. Inside the containers you can find a lot of interesting. First, it is options for coloring and various ornaments (even the funny hats!) for your vehicles, skins, pilots, toys that can be placed on the bridge of the ship, and other interesting items. But the most important thing you gain valuable experience, pumping his pilot. With new levels you get the modifications for a vehicle, which can increase your chances of winning. For example, one mod for 20 seconds increases the level of protection or speed up the missile guidance system. Each fashion in addition to advantages, there are tangible downsides. For each vehicle in the game includes twenty different modifications. By the way, despite the presence of in-game currency, the game does not even hint at microtransactions. On the other hand, things can change in the future.
The Battle takes place in 12 arenas. Here you and stone catacombs, and a space station on an asteroid, and an abandoned factory, and spaceship graveyard. Each location is researched and thought out quite well, allowing players to develop their own strategies of warfare, ducking for cover or even sneaking up to enemies from behind, using workarounds. While in the arena and then there are different events. For example, suddenly appear a minefield, aggressive drones or turrets. But sometimes, flying repair drones and repairing your battered ship, or there are containers with extra ammunition.
What really upset me in the game is very mediocre graphics. You come across a very low poly models, low resolution assets, and even shots from machine guns and does hurt the eyes, because they implemented a flat stretched textures. On the background of remarkably detailed characters and such moments look extremely inappropriate. Another noticeable disadvantage of the game is the lack of any story campaign. So I would right gladly took the game for each character to learn his story, understand his motivation. But such a possibility in StarBlood Arena.
Surprising is the fact that this VR game almost does not cause sickness. StarBlood, the developers Arena, seem to know some "special magic", because given what aerobatics has to make players, they should be sick and even occasionally Evert. But no! At first you experience minor discomfort of disorientation in three-dimensional space, but no more. The game is wild, fun and even a little crazy. But no traditional VR inconveniences you do not feel. In the settings, not even the usual options to improve the comfort of users. Amazing! Other developers of VR-projects should learn from WhiteMoon Dreams.the
Sometimes the player can experience disorientation in space. the
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