A good VR game gets your blood pumping. A great VR game pushes you even further.
We're just getting started in the great wide world of Virtual Reality, and already there are lists of incredible experiences for every type of headset that is guaranteed to leave the wearer with more than a smile on their face. Great VR games are powerful, emotional experiences that put you in the middle of a situation and lets you act physically to deal with the challenge in front of you. Sometimes this means solving puzzles, sometimes this means watching a compelling story play out in front of you, and sometimes this means looking at Katniss Everdeen and Legolas and saying "up your game, kids" as you loose another arrow from your bow.
Today we're going to talk about that last experience. It's called Holopoint for the HTC Vive, and it is without a doubt one of the most engaging, thrilling experiences available on Steam VR today. It's also, unbelievably, only $8.
Holopoint couldn't be more simple. You're an archer in a simulation, and your targets are all around you. Each wave becomes more complicated, as the targets begin to fire back at you. Eventually those targets become simulated people, some with impressive armor and katanas and others with magic powers or projectile weapons. The mission is always the same, though. Eliminate all the targets, dodge the attacks headed your way, and get the highest possible score you can manage.
What makes this game so amazing is the HTC Vive. The controllers let you reach behind you to grab another arrow from the quiver you can't see, nock that arrow in the string on the bow in your other hand, pull, loose, and strike a target. It's a simple motion that, when combined with repetition and a constant need to dodge your targets, quickly becomes a deeply physical game. By the time you get ten waves into this game, you are constantly moving in order to survive.
The need to push yourself and continue to compete is incredible.
The emotional component in Holopoint is largely self-created, but no less important. There's no story or plot to work with, but as your opponents take human shape it's easy to be startled by one sneaking up behind you. Spatial audio makes the virtual floorboard creak when one gets near, but it's no less jarring to see one about to swing a sword into your face. When you combine this with a global and community scoreboard, which ranks your performance against every other Holopoint player as well as every Holopoint player you know on Steam, the need to push yourself and continue to compete is incredible.
Holopoint would be an incredible game for $30, one that has fans aggressively one-upping one another for months to come. It's almost enough physical activity to count as a cardio session when you get into the final waves of the game, and that alone is a valuable experience for some (though soaking your headset pad with sweat is still super gross). Holopoint doesn't cost $30, though. It only costs $8, and that price hasn't stopped the developer from constantly updating and improving the experience. Visuals are regularly enhanced, settings have been added, and the developer is clearly listening to feedback as the userbase grows. For that reason alone this game deserves to be in every HTC Vive owners Library on Steam, but it's also just an incredible experience that deserves to be played by as many people as possible. Give Holopoint a try, I promise you won't be disappointed.