Welcome to CoLab, the world's first VR reality game show! Well, sort of...
Sometimes you want to sit down and listen to witty banter while working out your brain. If that's the case, then it's time to check out the hilarious and brain teasing CoLab. You'll have to figure out dozens of different puzzles to move from room to room in the hopes of winning the grand prize. The entire time that you're playing, you'll be getting constant direction and witty banter from the robot who works as the host for the show. It's a ton of fun, and plenty easy to jump into, now we've got all the details for you here.
Things look pretty run down here
When you get started in CoLab things aren't looking so good. You find yourself in a very bare looking room with a few buttons on the wall next to a door, and a robot who begins to speak to you. The first thing that you'll probably notice is that things don't exactly look kept up. In fact, it's very much the opposite.
The walls look stark and grey, there are old items thrown into corners, and the walls themselves look like they might be at home in a storage container or forgotten warehouse. In fact, the general aesthetic may end up reminding you of another robot narrator in a game that requires some puzzle solving.
CoLab cultivates an atmosphere that says that the VR reality game that you're competing in has seen some better days. You'll get the same idea from some of the comments that you robot narrator throws out at you. The audition areas are in far worse shape than the main areas of the game, but you still get the feeling that CoLab has seen some better days.
Puzzles, Puzzles, everywhere
The gameplay inside of CoLab is fairly simple, but varied at the same time. That's because room by room, you'll be solving a variety of puzzles. Each puzzle is a little bit different, and all of them use the Gear VR headset without a controller to complete. It uses head tracking, as well as the touchpad, and works fairly intuitively.
When you first get started, you'll need to complete the audition to get onto the main show. This entails racing against a 10-minute timer to complete a variety of tasks. These include knocking chairs out of the way, juggling an item in the air, pushing buttons to open doors, and even a tile image puzzle which is a serious pain in the ass to complete.
These initial stages work as the tutorial for the rest of the game.
During all of this your narrator will be constantly talking. Sometimes this is in the form of giving you directions where to go next, although he does on occasion lie to you. He'll also explain what you need to do in each puzzle in order to move to the next room, during all of this, that timer is still counting down reminding you there are only 10 minutes to complete things.
These initial stages work as the tutorial for the rest of the game. It gets you used to how you'll interact with the game, and sets you up for some of the puzzles that you may encounter. Since everything is controlled by either your touchpad, or head movement, it's pretty easy to get the hang of the controls. Whizzing through each level without issues isn't going to be as easy as all that though.
Some levels are easier than others, like connecting the flow between boxes, or juggling items. In others though, you'll need to redirect lasers or deal with actual puzzles that will have you scratching your head or glaring at the screen. For the most part taking a few minutes to think through everything will let you figure out what you need to do.
Movement is a little bit wonky within CoLab. That's because you don't really move much when you are completing a puzzle. When it is time to move, you'll need to focus on the floor where you want to move. A yellow indicator circle will pop up and if you tap on your touchpad, you'll teleport to that space. The first few times you need to move around it can be pesky, but I got used to it by the third puzzle.
Each puzzle also has it's own level. This means that it's easy to jump in for just a few minutes, or you can play for a longer stint. Once you've gotten past the audition puzzles, you'll get access to the full game. It's broken into two different episodes, with a number of stages to get through in each of them.
CoLab is a fun, mind bending game that will draw in fans of Portal 2 and puzzles alike. Your narrator is quirky, and fun, making sure there is always banter while you're trying to figure out the next stage. The controls are simple and intuitive, and the actual gameplay is challenging without becoming too frustrating in the process. Best of all, it's available on the Oculus Store for a mere $4.99.
- Easy and intuitive controls
- Short stages for each puzzle
- gameplay that keeps challenging you without becoming too frustrating
- Movement and physics can be a bit wonky
- Your narrator's banter can be repetitive and irritating if you get stuck on a level
CoLab does an awesome job of delivering dozens of puzzles at a great price.